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Fijian culture and the environment: a focus on the ecological and social interconnectedness of tourism development

Movono, A, Dahles, H and Becken, S 2017 , 'Fijian culture and the environment: a focus on the ecological and social interconnectedness of tourism development' , Journal of Sustainable Tourism, vol. 26, no. 3 , pp. 451-469 , doi: 10.1080/09669582.2017.1359280.

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Abstract

Understanding the complex and adaptive nature of Pacific Island communities is a growing yet relatively unexplored area in the context of tourism development. Taking an ethnographic research approach, this study examines how over 40 years of tourism development have led to complex and multi-scale changes within an Indigenous Fijian village. The study establishes that tourism development has brought a range of ecological shifts that have, over time, spurred far-reaching changes within the embedded sociocultural constructs of the community. The development of the Naviti Resort, a water catchment dam, a causeway and a man-made island have created substantial changes in totemic associations, livelihood approaches, and traditional knowledge structures within Vatuolalai village. The emergence of internal adaptive cycles, and new behaviours, practices and values that redefine the cultural landscape will be discussed. This paper demonstrates the interconnectivity of nature, society and culture within Indigenous communal systems and asserts that ecological changes introduced in one part of a community stimulate complex, non-linear responses in other elements of the socio-ecological system of a Fijian village.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Movono, A and Dahles, H and Becken, S
Keywords: community development, cultural change, complex adaptive systems, social change, Fiji
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Sustainable Tourism
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 0966-9582
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/09669582.2017.1359280
Copyright Information:

© 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

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