Selected Aspects of Sustainable Tourism in the European Union Countries form the Point of View of the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals

Iwona Bak, Malgorzta Kurtz
European Research Studies Journal, Volume XXIV, Special Issue 3, 114-129, 2021
DOI: 10.35808/ersj/2418


Purpose: The article aims to show which European Union countries deviate in plus and minus from the average level of selected variables characterizing the level of sustainable tourism and the links between countries from the point of view of the analyzed variables. Design/ Methodology/ Approach: The correspondence analysis based on a complex matrix of markers and Ward’s method was used in the study. The research covered the 27 current members of the European Union and the United Kingdom, which only in 2021 formally left the European Union. Findings: The research shows that EU countries are very diverse in terms of sustainable tourism, as evidenced by, among others, indicators of the quality of the natural environment and the intensity of tourist traffic used by the research. This diversity is related to the general socio-economic development of countries, the level of industrialization, the degree of urbanization, having natural assets, etc. No groups of countries would differ significantly in plus or minus from the average of all analyzed variables in the EU. Practical Implications: The presented results are important for individual countries as well as for global organizations. They can be helpful for entities involved in the development of tourism and, consequently, increase the innovativeness and competitiveness of economies that are at least partly based on tourism. Sustainable tourism, which preserves cultural integrity and biological diversity, can become an excellent alternative to mass tourism. Originality/Value: The article contributes to the most current European and world scientific discussions on the importance of sustainable tourism and highlights the most exciting problems and dilemmas that may become the subject of further research.

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