Sustainable tourism entrepreneurs: values, motivations and implemented sustainability measures


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Currently, the tourism industry is not sustainable. It is responsible for about 5% of the global CO₂ emissions. Especially Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the tourism industry are lagging behind in their contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. The main aim of my PhD thesis was to develop a deeper understanding of the antecedents of SME tourism entrepreneurs’ sustainable behaviour and their influence on sustainable behaviour. Currently, little is known about how values, both independently and at their intersection, motivations to become an entrepreneur, and motivations to act sustainably influence the sustainable behaviour of SME tourism entrepreneurs. My thesis adds some interesting insights to the current body of literature, which may prove relevant in nudging SME tourism entrepreneurs towards more and better sustainable behaviour. For example, we found that, without recognizing it as such, SME tourism entrepreneurs conduct numerous sustainability measures that add value to the social dimension of sustainability. Relations near to them, such as their employees, local suppliers, and local neighbourhood, are particularly important to them. Similarly, the biospheric values that SME tourism entrepreneurs hold should not be underestimated, as we observed that the amalgamated biospheric value became a prioritised value. Thus, communication around and nudging for sustainability and sustainability measures to be implemented should not only be construed around a gain frame but rather also include social and environmental aspects.
Originele taal-2English
KwalificatieDoctor of Philosophy
Toekennende instantie
  • Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
  • de Jong, Gjalt, Supervisor
  • Cavagnaro, Elena, Co-supervisor
Datum van toekenning14-apr.-2023
Plaats van publicatie[Groningen]
StatusPublished - 2023

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