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In Search of the Holy Grail: A Case Study of the Implementation of Sustainable Practices in the Accommodation Industry in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2007 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Cambodia differs from many other developing countries because of one specific asset which is tourism. The number of tourists in Cambodia is currently growing with a rapid pace due to the Angkor site near the city of Siem Reap.

The growing number of tourists has definitely created challenges for the accommodation industry in the Siem Reap region. This has created the need for achieving a delicate balance between the exploration of the region and how much the region can cater for regarding the environment, social and long-term economical benefits. This growth has however brought along many downsides such as economical, environmental, social, cultural, political, and technological. There are no previous studies done about sustainable practice in the accommodation industry in developing countries. This study examines the barriers for the implementation of sustainable practice among accommodation providers in Siem Reap.

The first step is this process was to determine the state of the environment. The second step was to determine the cause of the state followed by determining the process of change for sustainable development which can be regarded as the barriers. Previous studies have concluded that barriers of financial difficulties, the cost of change, lack of resources, the lack of information and support regarding sustainable tourism are common barriers for the implementation of sustainable practice. The barriers can be categorized into industry barriers related to industry specific characteristics and organizational barriers that refer to barriers due to characteristics within the firm.

This report is based on a case study in which hermeneutic and qualitative method was used. The data was based on a content analysis of reports published by the International Development Centre of Japan in cooperation with the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism and 14 interviews with accommodation providers in Siem Reap.

In many areas there was a lack of sustainable practices and many barriers could be uncovered. Barriers included among others lack of financial resources which restricted ownership, low awareness of the environmental state, lack of governmental support; an insufficient educational quality which limits management opportunities for Cambodians and insufficient quality in the environmental friendly products.

This study has expanded the knowledge of barriers for the implementation not only to include environmental sustainable practices but also to include barriers when it economical, social, cultural, political and technological dimensions. These barriers should be considered representative for barriers for the implementation of sustainable practices in the accommodation industry in developing countries, especially in contexts with a similar development pattern as Siem Reap.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Handelshögskolan vid Umeå universitet , 2007. , 82 p.
Keyword [en]
Sustainable development, Barriers, Sustainable tourism, Cambodia, Accommodation industry
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-1344OAI: diva2:140713
Available from: 2007-09-11 Created: 2007-09-11Bibliographically approved

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