Tourism and development at work: 15 years of tourism and poverty reduction within the SNV Netherlands Development Organisation

J.A. Hummel, V.R. van der Duim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Over the last 20 years, international development agencies like SNV Netherlands Development Organisation have hesitantly become involved in tourism. This paper explains the complex and rarely researched political and technical issues behind the working practices, drivers and beliefs of an aid agency seeking to alleviate poverty via tourism development. Based on insiders’ commentaries and documentary sources, it presents five phases of the conceptual and material ordering of tourism within SNV. The phases took SNV from opposition to tourism work, through Community-Based Tourism (CBT), expansion, links to Millennium Development Goals, working in partnership with the private sector and an overall increasing need to deliver defined short term results – to closure. It explains how and why tourism became an important part of development work and how changing policy discourses and practices of international and national organisations influence the way tourism is practised as part of development work. It shows that SNV itself stimulated strong international debates about tourism and development. It concludes that relations between tourism and development remain highly contested and require the continual production of “success”. SNV is now gradually closing its poverty reduction through tourism work. The paper reflects on lessons that might be learned from the SNV story
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-338
JournalJournal of Sustainable Tourism
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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