Working Together: New Publications from EDST

A Geography of Ecotourism in Cambodia: Regions, Patterns, and Potentials
Pierre Walter and Vicheth Sen

Conceptualizing learning in the Climate Justice Movement
Jenalee Kluttz and Pierre Walter 

Host learning in community-based ecotourism in Nepal: The case of Sirubari and Ghalegaun homestays
Pierre Walter, Kapil Dev Regmi, Pushpa Raj Khanalb

Modernisation theory, ecotourism policy, and sustainable development for poor countries of the global South: perspectives from Nepal
Kapil Regmi and Pierre Walter


A geography of ecotourism in Cambodia: regions, patterns, and potentials

Pierre Walter and Vicheth Sen

Tourism visits to Cambodia have expanded rapidly, with over 5 million visitors arriving in the country by 2016. Angkor Wat remains the primary tourist attraction, but increasing numbers of  tourists also visit ecotourism destinations. This study draws on Weaver’s [(2002). Asian ecotourism: Patterns and themes. Tourism Geographies, 4 (2), 153–172] spatial and structural analysis of ecotourism in Asia as an organizing framework to develop a geography of ecotourism in Cambodia. In a comprehensive review of academic publications, reports, online ecotourism clearinghouses, and project websites, 30 Cambodian ecotourism sites were identified based on 5 ecotourism criteria. A content analysis of ecotourism project websites was then conducted to group together ecotourism sites with common characteristics in particular geographic regions. Each site was plotted on a Google Terrain map, and local and regional terrain, land cover, transport, and other physical features were analyzed, supplemented by detailed geographical data from Google Panorama, Earth, and Satellite map functions. Three relatively distinct ecotourism regions were identified: the (a) mangrove and rainforest region, (b) highland trekking region, and (c) wetlands and waterways region. For each region, tourism gateways and ecotourism development challenges and potentials are elaborated. The paper concludes with a discussion of study findings and their implications for ecotourism development in Cambodia.

Asia Pacific Journal of Tourism Research, in press, 2-15.  https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10941665.2017.1422771


Conceptualizing learning in the Climate Justice Movement

Jenalee Kluttz & Pierre Walter

This article extends Scandrett et al.’s conceptual framework for social movement learning to understand learning and knowledge creation in the climate justice movement. Drawing on radical pluralist theoretical approaches to social movement learning, learning in the climate justice movement is conceptualized at the micro, meso, and macro levels, along two continua of (a) norganized and organized learning and (b) individual and collective learning. Two critical themes of learning about power and learning about place are used as examples to illustrate learning across the three levels. Article conclusions discuss strengths and limitations of the conceptual framework and directions for further research to better understand adult learning within the climate justice movement.

Adult Education Quarterly, in press, 1-17:  http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0741713617751043


Host learning in community-based ecotourism in Nepal: The case of Sirubari and Ghalegaun homestays

Pierre Walter, Kapil Dev Regmia, Pushpa Raj Khanalb

Pushpa Raj Khanal is an Executive Officer at the Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development of the Government of Nepal (GON).

This study investigated host learning in two community-based ecotourism homestay villages in Nepal’s mountain trekking region. Homestays are an intense visitor-host contact zone, rich in learning, and important to the success of ecotourism projects. This was an interpretive case study used to interpret and test Billet’s (2014) theory of workplace learning, and offer insights into a new area of inquiry in tourism studies. This theoretical lens captured the complex, contextually-based curricular, pedagogical and epistemological practices of host learning in ecotourism homestays. Findings identified a homestay “hosting curriculum” comprising: (a) environmental cleanliness, sanitation and conservation; (b) the valuing of local culture; and (c) homestay management. The study showed the complex dimensions of host learning in a time of cultural, economic and social change occurring in both villages, and how local hosts adapted their beliefs, tourism practices and identities in response to these changes.

Tourism Management Perspectives, 2018, 26, 49-58. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2211973618300291


Modernisation theory, ecotourism policy, and sustainable development for poor countries of the global South: perspectives from Nepal

Kapil Regmi and Pierre Walter

Despite its popularity as a strategy for sustainable development in the global South, ecotourism has had a mixed record in enhancing the socio-economic conditions of the rural populace. We argue that part of this failure lies in the fact that the theory and practice of ecotourism, like conventional mass tourism, has been guided by a modernisation approach to development. In this paper, we outline the historical evolution of ecotourism policy in Nepal, review the present global policy agenda of ‘ecotourism for development’, and offer a critique of modernist forms of ecotourism. Using empirical research from secondary sources on ecotourism in Nepal, we then discuss the economic, social, educational, and environmental benefits of community-based ecotourism. We conclude that to achieve sustainable development goals in Nepal and other poor countries of the global South, the focus of ecotourism for development should shift from modernist, ‘economist’ forms of ecotourism to more locally controlled, participatory forms of community-based ecotourism for sustainable development.

International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, 2017, 24(1), 1-14. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13504509.2016.1147502