Social Impacts of Tourism as Perceived by State-planned Tourism Destination Residents: The Case of Huatulco, Mexico


Drawing from primarily quantitative data collected in 2010 among adult residents (n = 204) in the state-planned tourism destination of Huatulco, Oaxaca, Mexico, this paper examines the ways in which local residents perceive the social effects of regional tourism development. Currently, socio-demographic impacts of tourism are insufficiently addressed within developing economies and within tourism development initiatives crafted and implemented under state control. Field-tested questionnaire data and ethnographic fieldwork indicate that among Huatulco residents tourism is not viewed as positively associated with increasing rates of crime, prostitution, or drugs. However, increasing variables such as traffic, noise, littering, or population size are associated with Huatulco's tourism economy. Huatulco residents' views on population mobility are mixed. The results presented herein support previous findings within the literatures on tourism impacts, as well as challenge some existing assertions on the correlations between tourism development and social changes within host communities.


Sociology and Anthropology

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International Journal of Tourism Anthropology