Identifying core indicators of sustainable tourism: A path forward?

Elizabeth Agyeiwaah, Robert Douglas McKercher, Wantanee Suntikul

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

130 Citations (Scopus)


Indeed, so many indicators have been developed that industry seems to be overwhelmed by choice, leading to inaction, poor decision-making or adoption of the easiest option. Perhaps, simplicity is the way forward. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate a number of studies that have proposed a variety of indicator themes to identify commonalities among them that may serve as a starting point for enterprises to move towards a more sustainable path. Seven key indicator themes emerged, including job creation, business viability, quality of life, water quality, waste management, energy conservation and maintenance of community integrity. The term ‘indicator theme’ is used for it identifies what needs to be assessed to monitor progress towards sustainable tourism, while simultaneously recognizing that specific measurement metrics may vary depending as they are site, context and enterprise specific.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-33
Number of pages8
JournalTourism Management Perspectives
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017


  • Indicators
  • Meta-analysis
  • Sustainability
  • Sustainable tourism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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