Document type: DU ETD
Collection: Geology Theses  
Title Ecotourism and Sustainibility in Chicacnab, Guatemala: A Success Story?
Author(s) Bascomb, Bobby A.
Institution University of Denver
Degree Type Master's
Degree Name M.A.
Type of Resource text
Degree Date 2005 June
Digital Origin reformatted digital
Rights Statement All Rights Reserved
Reason for Restrictions No restrictions
Type of Restriction No restrictions
Abstract Ecotourism has enormous potential to bridge the gap between economic development and ecological conservation in the developing world. However, ecotourism programs frequently fall short of fully achieving established development and conservation goals. To be considered successful, ecotourism must be economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable. This research determines the relative success or failure of ecotourism in a specific case study. To determine the effects of ecotourism on families, community life, and local environment, I principally relied on ethnographic field methods. My results found ecotourism in Chicacnab to be economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable relative to other ecotourism projects described in the available literature. The negative effects at this time are limited to communication problems between hosting families and tourists, friction between tourist-taking families and non-participating families, and a littering problem as a result of the newly built tienda. At this time the benefits of ecotourism outweigh the negative effects. Ecotourism here encourages conservation of the resource upon which it is based. Participating families have discontinued slash and burn agriculture to better preserve the cloud forest to show paying tourists. The income from ecotourism also means that the male head of household no longer needs to migrate for wage work. Ecotourism in Chicacnab was planned in close cooperation with the community and is currently practiced on a small scale.
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