Sustainable Rural Tourism: Lessons for Rural Development

Ruth McAreavey, John McDonagh

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68 Citations (Scopus)
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Rural areas are recognised for their complex, multi-functional capacities with a range of different interest groups claiming their rights to, and use of, different rural spaces. The current rural development paradigm that is evident across the globe is epitomised by the European LEADER approach. Using evidence from the proposed National Park in Northern Ireland, we ask the question: what is the potential of sustainable rural tourism to contribute to rural development? Within our analysis we consider the scope for adaptive tourism to overcome some of the ongoing challenges that have been identified within the LEADER approach. Four themes are revealed from this analysis: institutional (in)capacity; legitimacy of local groups; navigating between stakeholder interests; and sustainable tourism in practice. These issues, discussed in turn, have clear implications for the new rural development programme.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-194
Number of pages20
JournalSociologia Ruralis
Issue number2
Early online date24 Dec 2010
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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