Science Target Conference Systems, Ajman 4th International Environment Conference 2016

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SMEs AND SUSTAINABLE TOURISM - THE CASE OF AN INDIAN HIMALAYAN DESTINATION
Ravinder Nath Batta

Last modified: 2016-01-04

Abstract


Small and Medium Entrprises (SMEs) constitute life and blood of travel and tourism industry and strongly influence the development of a region, especially in the context of a developing country. With the mushroom growth of such  enterprises, the common pool resources (water, sewage treatment facility, solid waste management, parking and roads) at the destinations experience serious capacity strain leading to problems often associated with unsustainable development. while some literature on SMEs and tourism is available, studies on successful experiments on cluster formations and institutional arrangements relating to SMEs development and destination development are relatively scarce and relating this to sustainable tourism at the destination is an area still unexplored. This paper is an attempt in this direction.

This paper examines the impacts of unplanned growth of tourism SMEs on  infrastructure and the environment at Manali- an ecologically fragile area on the western indian Himalayas. Using indicator''s framework, impacts of tourism on the economic, social and environmental aspects are studied and it is seen that SMEs working in isolation are damaging the environment at the destination. For achieving sustainable tourism development at the destination through public private partnership, a community benefit tourism initiative model is developed and implemented that helps in generation of resources for green infrastructure, community mobilization for sustainable tourism development ultimately leading to green and inclusive growth of the local economy.