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Overtourism Impact on the Environment: Searching for a More Environmentally Sustainable Industry

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Tourism, Culture, and Heritage".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2023) | Viewed by 1593

Special Issue Editors

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Guest Editor
Department Geography and Tourism, University of Coimbra, Faculty of Arts & Humanities and CEGOT - Centre of Studies in Geography and Spatial Planning, Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: safety in tourism; terrorism and tourism; consumer behavior in tourism
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Universidade Europeia and Centro de Estudos Geográficos do Instituto de Geografia e Ordenamento do Território da Universidade de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal
Interests: tourism marketing; digital marketing; knowledge sharing; networks
Department of Management Science, Tourism and Hospitality, Estoril Higher Institute for Tourism and Hotel Studies, 2769-810 Estoril, Portugal
Interests: consumer behavior in tourism; digital marketing and social media

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Guest Editor
GOVCOPP - The Research Unit on Governance, Competitiveness and Public Policies, Aveiro University, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Interests: accessible tourism; sustainable tourism; consumers behaviour

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleague,

Tourism industry, especially in the massified destinations, can have a significant negative impact in the environment. As a global activity, tourism can be one of the main responsible in the climate change and the environmental degradation. Managers and researchers in tourism have a crucial role in avoiding this negative impact. All the stakeholders in tourism should join and build strategies to build a greener industry.

This Special Issue focuses on the debate of the negative impacts of tourism in the environment, namely on the causes, consequences and specially on the solutions and strategies to make tourism industry more sustainable in the future. The special issue addresses a broad set of questions, including aspects related to tourism planning, management, and marketing in a time when tourism industry is facing a breaking point. Analysis of the impacts of tourism in the environment and the strategies for fight and recover from those impacts in order to achieve a more resilient and sustainable industry are also considered in this Special Issue. Several perspectives on this debate are welcomed: i) quantitative and qualitative research, ii) conceptual and theoretical approaches, iii) discussions focusing on economic, social, cultural, environmental, and technological aspects of the sustainable development of tourism, iv) debates on the strategies to recover from crises along with other relevant analyses or problems can be addressed. In this special issue, editors seek works from different disciplines, perspectives, and methodologies that search for answers in developing a tourism industry more resilient and sustainable in the face of the serious challenges.

  • Environmental challenges of tourism crises: environmental crises provoked by tourism activity; environment as a crucial asset to tourism industry; environmental crises impacting tourism industry.
  • Social challenges of tourism negative impacts in the environment: the relationship between tourism and residents; migrations and impacts in tourism destinations; social perceptions on tourism impacts.
  • Economic challenges of tourism negative impacts in the environment: how overtourism in impacting specific destinations bringing severe costs on governments and tourism organizations; economic responses to recover tourism industry.
  • Technological challenges of tourism negative impacts in the environment: technological solutions to tourism crises; technology serving a more resilient industry.
  • Strategies and solutions to build a more sustainable and greener tourism industry.
  • Exploring the perception of tourism and hospitality Human Resources about the industry’s impact in the environment; employees’ behavior and attitudes towards tourism negative impact in the environment.
  • Development of place Brand strategies to develop destinations and to create acknowledge of the guests toprotect the planet.
  • Development of marketing strategies to create new experiences to engage guests with the destinations, avoiding ouvertourism.
  • How Extended Realities realities can be used and applied to awaken the client of the destination, in the three phases of decision making: pre-consumpion, during and after the experience consumption.

The list above is for illustrative purposes only. We will also consider research proposals in related domains within the overarching theme of this Special Issue.

Dr. Cláudia Seabra
Dr. Sofia Almeida
Dr. Rita Peres
Prof. Dr. Susana Mesquita
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • environmental sustainability
  • overtourism
  • green tourism
  • responsible tourism

Published Papers (1 paper)

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19 pages, 2678 KiB  
The Effects of Tourism Development on Eco-Environment Resilience and Its Spatio-Temporal Heterogeneity in the Yangtze River Economic Belt, China
by Kun Wang, Xiangtai Chen, Zhenxian Lei, Songxin Zhao and Xiao Zhou
Sustainability 2023, 15(22), 16124; - 20 Nov 2023
Viewed by 666
Tourism sustainability is a significant approach to forming a synergistic model of industry and ecology in ecologically vulnerable areas. Scientifically detecting the effect mechanism of tourism development on eco-environment resilience is important in achieving regional social-ecological system sustainability. In this work, empirical exploration [...] Read more.
Tourism sustainability is a significant approach to forming a synergistic model of industry and ecology in ecologically vulnerable areas. Scientifically detecting the effect mechanism of tourism development on eco-environment resilience is important in achieving regional social-ecological system sustainability. In this work, empirical exploration is conducted on the tourism development index (TDI) and eco-environment resilience index (ERI) in the Yangtze River Economic Belt (YREB) to study the spatio-temporal heterogeneity of TDI’s effect on the ERI. The results indicate significant growth in the TDI in the YREB, with the formation of tourist clusters around Shanghai and Chongqing as the core. Although the ERI typically exhibits a declining trend, the rate of decline has notably slowed, forming a “high at the sides and low in the middle” spatial pattern. The TDI and ERI are spatially dependent in the YREB, with predominantly high-high (HH) and low-high (LH) clusters in Shanghai, Zhejiang, and Jiangsu. Conversely, upstream regions with strong eco-environmental foundations exhibit low-low (LL) and high-low (HL) clusters. In general, the TDI promotes the ERI, but there is significant spatio-temporal heterogeneity in the YREB. Positive impact regions are expanding, while negative impact regions are shrinking. These results could provide scientific evidence for differentiated classification and control policies in the YREB. Full article
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