Editorial

SAJTH, January 2017, Vol. 10, No. 1

Tourism has various consequences, which are influenced by a large
number of variables, especially the ability and willingness of the
community to accept changes. For some communities, tourism is one
of the few options for economic survival while for others tourism is a
combination of positive and negative factors .Tourism development
should be part of an economic development and must be done in a
manner that is sustainable. Tourism has often been associated with
the contact between cultures, behaviors, values and traditions.
Tourism is considered a framework where hosts and tourists can
learn better about from each other, through direct interaction. Also,
tourism requires host communities to be more responsive and
educated to provide quality services to tourists. In addition,
interactions between locals and tourists generates the emergence of
new ideas, values and motivations for social and economic progress
There are authors who argue that consumerism destroys culture
and generates environmental and social problems: traffic congestion
and queues at natural and man-made attractions. An example of this
is Venice, which is overwhelmed by tourists, generating an
increasing number of environmental and social issues. “Venice is full
of tourists. The invasion of tourists in San Marco Basilica caused
damages to the frescoes due to the condensation created by the breath
of the visitors. Also, the stone floor was constantly eroded by the river
of travelers. Unfortunately, this type of problem is often accepted by
tourists as an important part of the personal experience. Tourism is
one of the most important components of the global economy. It
generates billions of dollars in revenues and millions of jobs
worldwide. It is considered by many communities, especially in
emerging countries the only tool for development, and the only
chance for increasing the quality of life. Thus the tourism industry has
stretched from seaside to mountain resorts and from small villages to
big metropolises. But at the same time, tourism started to show its uglier
side. Both the actions of investors and of tourists are having negative
impacts on the socio-cultural values and environmental assets of host
communities all over the world. In the present paper we are trying to
observe the impacts of tourism on society from three perspectives:
economic, social and cultural, and environmental. From the economic
perspective, tourism generates wealth and jobs, but the wealth leaks
from the community and the jobs are mainly low-income. From the
socio-cultural perspective, tourism brings together people from
different backgrounds, cultures and traditions and promotes peace.
But at the same time, due to globalization, many communities have
lost their cultural identity and gave way to a Disney-fiction of their
village or town. Last but not least, tourism helped create national
parks and protected areas, where unique examples of flora and fauna
can be found. But tourists have been proven to be a problem, because of
the pollution they generate. Tourist entrepreneurs can also be blamed
for a total disrespect to local traditions and the environment. The main problem from these negative impacts is that the local community is the only side
that picks up the check for all the damages on the culture, tradition and, most
importantly on the environment.

Globalization is accused of destroying the socio-cultural identity of the local
communities and indigenous values, traditions and lifestyle.. Diversity gives way to
efficiency and local culture to global culture. A small village, which is facing many
economic problems can succeed a change of 180 degrees, by capitalizing on several
features: beautiful scenery, tranquility and lack of congestion. In rural areas,
land and coastal areas are purchased by developers / investors, who transform
farming and fishing communities in tourist resorts, replacing farms and forests with
apartments or shopping centers. Modern hotels, highways and recreation centers have no local charm. All the resources that have attracted tourists in the beginning – the beauty of the landscape, peace and tranquility – are continuously eroded by tourism development and the rapidly increasing pace of life. For this reason, the meaning of local culture might dilute and dissolve.

Dr Abhinav Kamal Raina
Chief Editor