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Sustainable Tourism in International Context: Solutions during and after the Global Pandemic Crisis

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2023) | Viewed by 53628

Special Issue Editors

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Global tourist arrivals have increased from 25 million internationally in 1950 to 278m in 1980, 527m in 1995, 1.32 billion in 2017, and are expected to reach 1.8 billion by 2030. How do we make global tourism sustainable, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic? The concept of tourism sustainability is progressively becoming a complex issue in relation to how companies, stakeholders, and governments meet the ever-growing demands and opportunities on a global scale. This approach, considered as an environmental management tool during the 1980s, is now appreciated as a crucial and dominant factor in modern business discourse. Furthermore, this issue has become an area of study that has been deepened with interconnected theories and approaches, such as in ethics, social issues management, green tourism, cause-related tourism, public policy, stakeholder management, and tourism accountability. These are only a few aspects used to illustrate the phenomena associated with sustainable tourism, thus making it a very multifaceted phenomenon.

Sustainable tourism, in fact, should integrate environmental, social, economic, cultural issues into its global operations. Sustainable tourism should be able to raise the collective consciousness and approach the individual consciousness towards climate change, pollution caused by tourism, atmosphere, water, wildlife, habitat, human, and tourism. Different consumer generations, especially Millennials and Zers, are becoming more and more concerned about sustainable issues and ensuring a sustainable society; their consumption habits and behaviors are becoming increasingly sustainable, as are their concerns regarding the environment, decreasing pollution, and for healthy food, thus allowing future generations similar access to resources as the present ones (Dabija et al., 2019). Young consumers are more reliant on sustainable development goals, being willing not only to sacrifice time and money for the sake of the planet but also to have their own contribution toward ensuring the prosperity of society and the planet. However, today’s challenge is “how to think beyond and outside current limitations to understand how to use and manage planetary resources, not just for the short term but with a view to future need” (Sustainable Development Goals, 2018) as well as how the tourism sector will recover after the global pandemic crisis and how will it be able to reinvent itself taking into consideration the global sustainable development goals.

The purpose of this call for papers is to address global economic, environmental, and social aspects of sustainable development in tourism through policies, best practices, strategies, and initiatives with all stakeholders, including indigenous people, local communities, visitors, industry and government. We aim to (i) understand the most important elements of sustainable tourism and connections among human development and the environment, (ii) how protecting the planet and maintaining resources could support the environment toward reaching inclusive and sustainable economic growth at the level of local destinations; promoting social inclusiveness, creating employment and aiming at poverty reduction in the tourism field; attaining resource efficiency, endorsing environmental protection and taking under control climate change; spreading cultural values, sustaining cultural diversity and raising awareness of heritage’s value; providing opportunities for mutual understanding, peace and security, considering tourism as a powerful tool for soft diplomacy; sustainable tourism strategies during/after the global pandemic crises; young consumers and their preference for sustainable tourism practices and initiatives. All these aims, if reached, will have the effect of decreasing the influence of the entire tourist sector on climate change and radically decreasing the strong reliance on non-renewable sources of energy since their tourism-related consumption has negative ecological consequences (UN, 2017; 2018; 2019) but, in concert, they will also help to break down cultural barriers and build bridges between tourists and hosts (SDG, tourism4development2019.org).

The correct consideration of the existing bonds between tourism, culture, economy, and the natural background is crucial in promoting successful sustainable tourism (Lee and Brahmasrene, 2013). For these reasons, it is important to find stakeholders able to spread through all kind of online and offline communication tools the sustainable tourism’s teachings, hoping that more and more people/stakeholders/visitors will be prone to following the approach and to put its principles into practice.

Recognizing the complexity and plurality at the heart of the global sustainable tourism discipline, this call for papers will fill a gap in the market by posing a number of original research questions on the intrinsic nature of sustainable tourism and to address gaps in knowledge in innovative ways to generate transformational change. In addition, it seeks to offer multiple, often competing answers to those questions by reviewing, in a different and integrated perspective, dominant existing themes with the literature and subjecting them to critical scrutiny through a multifocal perspective.

In view of the above, the proposed Special Issue aims to include the following topics and questions of interest, amongst others, in the cross-cultural study of the impact of sustainable tourism:

  • Sustainable tourism strategies after the COVID 19 pandemic
  • Human dimensions of environmental change
  • Consumer generations and sustainable tourism development
  • People, energy, and society
  • Planet, people, product, packaging, pricing, and promotion (6Ps) applied to tourism
  • Place tourism and smart growth
  • Place heritage
  • Place branding, community, image, and reputation
  • Public and brand engagement to sustainable tourism
  • Climate change, environmental auditing, and tourism branding strategy
  • Technology and innovation
  • Life cycle thinking and the circular economy
  • Waste management – reduction, recycling, and resource
  • (e)Healthcare and wellbeing
  • Digital tourism
  • Environmental law
  • Ecosystems and global change
  • Transitions to a low carbon economy
  • Global political ecology
  • Ethical implications

We would like to see profound and rigorous theoretical and managerial contributions that substantially advance and challenge existing theories used in global tourism and business research, performance, and competitive advantage. As such, articles must be able to demonstrate, clearly, a significant contribution to sustainable tourism management scholarship.

We have no a priori preferences regarding the theoretical stance or methodological approach. We welcome papers using traditional methodologies, survey, qualitative research as well as emerging innovative approaches including the use of algorithms, contrarian case analysis, and fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA).

Dr. Pantea Foroudi
Dr. Maria Palazzo
Dr. Dan-Cristian Dabija
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com 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.

Keywords

  • sustainable tourism
  • international context
  • COVID-19
  • global pandemic crisis
  • sustainability
  • tourism

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 4380 KiB  
Article
The Influence of a Country’s Sustainable Development on Likeability, Intention to Travel, and Country Image: A Case Study from Saudi Arabia
by Waleed Yahya Yousef
Sustainability 2023, 15(7), 5737; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15075737 - 24 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 982
Abstract
This paper discusses the impact of sustainable development on place likeability, intention to travel, and country image. The paper aims to find out whether the UK’s sustainable development encourages people in Saudi Arabia to visit the UK. A self-administered questionnaire was used, which [...] Read more.
This paper discusses the impact of sustainable development on place likeability, intention to travel, and country image. The paper aims to find out whether the UK’s sustainable development encourages people in Saudi Arabia to visit the UK. A self-administered questionnaire was used, which 320 respondents were asked to complete. The collected data were analysed using SPSS software. The results showed that the country’s sustainable development has a major influence on place likeability and intention to travel. The results also indicated that country image leads to country attachment. This paper provides a guideline for managers and policy makers who would like to consider the influence of the environment on their organisations. Additionally, managers can benefit from this paper by considering that country image, intention to travel, and happiness are correlated constructs that are influenced by sustainable development. Full article
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15 pages, 2173 KiB  
Article
Regional Differences in Tourism Eco-Efficiency in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei Region: Based on Data from 13 Cities
by Ying Zhang and Yunyan Li
Sustainability 2023, 15(4), 2907; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15042907 - 6 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1560
Abstract
In order to balance the economic development and ecological impact of tourism, it is essential to study tourism eco-efficiency in the context of sustainable development. This study analyzed regional tourism eco-efficiency based on the panel data of the 13 cities of the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei [...] Read more.
In order to balance the economic development and ecological impact of tourism, it is essential to study tourism eco-efficiency in the context of sustainable development. This study analyzed regional tourism eco-efficiency based on the panel data of the 13 cities of the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region using the super-SBM DEA model. Then, we analyzed the driving factors, compared regional differences, and investigated influencing factors of tourism eco-efficiency by applying the global Malmquist–Luenberger (GML) index, Theil index, and geographically and temporally weighted regression (GTWR) models. The results demonstrate the following: (1) The overall tourism eco-efficiency in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region between 2010 and 2019 was low, but it had an increasing trend. (2) The advancement of technological progress factors was mostly responsible for the increase in tourist eco-efficiency. (3) The results for tourism eco-efficiency were significantly polarizing, but the gap among the 13 cities is gradually narrowing. Regional differences are the main contributors to differences in tourism eco-efficiency. (4) Per capita GDP, the proportion of tertiary industry in GDP, the number of patents granted, and the proportion of urban population in the total population were the main factors affecting tourism eco-efficiency. This study could serve as a model for similar countries and regions seeking to enhance tourism eco-efficiency and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Full article
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21 pages, 7302 KiB  
Article
Sustainable Tourism Issues in European Countries during the Global Pandemic Crisis
by Maria Palazzo, Iza Gigauri, Mirela Clementina Panait, Simona Andreea Apostu and Alfonso Siano
Sustainability 2022, 14(7), 3844; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14073844 - 24 Mar 2022
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 4632
Abstract
Sustainable economic growth can be achieved through tourism by protecting the environment, maintaining natural resources, creating employment, improving cultural diversity, and recognizing cultural heritage values. The concept of tourism sustainability is gradually growing globally and becoming a dominant aspect in modern business, as [...] Read more.
Sustainable economic growth can be achieved through tourism by protecting the environment, maintaining natural resources, creating employment, improving cultural diversity, and recognizing cultural heritage values. The concept of tourism sustainability is gradually growing globally and becoming a dominant aspect in modern business, as companies need to meet stakeholders’ demands regarding environmental management. Sustainable tourism incorporates environmental, social, economic, and cultural issues into operations. The demand for green tourism, ethical consumption, protection of natural resources, and living close to nature is expected to increase. In particular, the latter gains more and more popularity due to the stress caused by the global pandemic and also because values have been re-evaluated at every level of society. In this paper, we explore sustainability in the tourism industry within the international context during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a specific focus on tourism in 35 European countries for the period between January 2020 and September 2021. We aimed to study the impact of tourism on sustainability based on the Eurostat database, using cluster analysis and descriptive statistics. The results indicate that tourism will recover slightly, even though the pandemic will continue, recording different effects in European countries. Furthermore, we highlight the relationship between income and tourism, the clusters on tourism being significantly different according to income. The results also identify potential recovery options to align this business area with global sustainable development goals, generate effective transformational change, and suggest how to create a viable growth process pushed by a glocal perspective. Full article
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18 pages, 302 KiB  
Article
The One Thing You Need to Change Is Emotions: The Effect of Multi-Sensory Marketing on Consumer Behavior
by Moein Abdolmohamad Sagha, Nader Seyyedamiri, Pantea Foroudi and Morteza Akbari
Sustainability 2022, 14(4), 2334; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14042334 - 18 Feb 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 10733
Abstract
Retailers are increasingly aware of the importance of store atmosphere on consumers’ emotions. The results of four experimental studies demonstrate that the sensory cues by which customers sense products and the amount of (in)congruency among the sensory stimuli of the products affect consumers’ [...] Read more.
Retailers are increasingly aware of the importance of store atmosphere on consumers’ emotions. The results of four experimental studies demonstrate that the sensory cues by which customers sense products and the amount of (in)congruency among the sensory stimuli of the products affect consumers’ emotions, willingness to purchase, and experience. In the presence of moderators such as colors, jingles, prices, and scent imagery, when facing sensory-rich experiential products (e.g., juice, coffee, hamburger, soda) with different sensory cues, consumers’ emotions, willingness to purchase, and experience depend on affective primacy and sensory congruency. The results (1) facilitate an improved consideration of the role of the interaction of sensory cues on customer emotions, (2) have consequences for outcomes linked with sensory congruency and affective primacy, and (3) help clarify possible incoherence in preceding studies on cross-modal outcomes in the setting of multi-sensory marketing. Full article
18 pages, 2261 KiB  
Article
Real Bounce Forward: Experimental Evidence on Destination Crisis Marketing, Destination Trust, e-WOM and Global Expat’s Willingness to Travel during and after COVID-19
by Murat Aktan, Umer Zaman, Pablo Farías, Syed Hassan Raza and Emenyeonu C. Ogadimma
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1111; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031111 - 19 Jan 2022
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3342
Abstract
The nexus of global tourism, disasters and sustainability have always been triggered by numerous crises, e.g., political unrest, wars, and pandemics. However, there is still fragmented research on destination crisis marketing, and its impact on willingness to travel remains largely unknown. To address [...] Read more.
The nexus of global tourism, disasters and sustainability have always been triggered by numerous crises, e.g., political unrest, wars, and pandemics. However, there is still fragmented research on destination crisis marketing, and its impact on willingness to travel remains largely unknown. To address this critical research gap, the present study used an experimental research design by framing destination crisis marketing campaigns (2 × 2 frames including DCM implemented versus DCM not implemented) and electronic word of mouth (2 × 2 frames including positive e-Wom versus negative e-Wom) to examine their impact on destination trust and global expat’s willingness to travel. Based on the experimental settings of global expats (N = 232; representing over 10 nationalities) with four framing groups (Group 1 to Group 4, configured in frames as ± DCM and ± e-Wom), the new evidence suggests that global expats who are provoked by positive crisis marketing campaigns and positive e-Wom (Group 4) have higher levels of destination trust than those who are exposed to either negative crisis marketing scenario and/or negative e-Wom (i.e., Group 1 to Group 3). The findings also revealed that global expat’s willingness to travel is significantly influenced by destination crisis marketing campaigns and e-Wom. Interestingly, for all framing groups (Group 1 to Group 4), the effects of destination crisis marketing and e-WOM on expat’s willingness to travel, was significantly mediated by destination trust. Utilizing prominent theories (i.e., signal theory, image repair theory and trust transfer theory), the study implications highlighted that crisis marketing and positive e-Wom could serve as the cornerstones for destinations to stay relevant, regenerate sustainable practices, as well as create new opportunities out of a crisis. Full article
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19 pages, 2046 KiB  
Article
Does COVID-19 Affect Safety and Security Perception in the Hospitality Industry? A Romanian Case Study
by Silviu Gabriel Szentesi, Lavinia Denisia Cuc, Andrea Feher and Paul Nichita Cuc
Sustainability 2021, 13(20), 11388; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132011388 - 15 Oct 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 6111
Abstract
The objective of the article is to analyze, based on social exchange theory, the different risk and safety perceptions of employees and customers in the hospitality industry regarding the protections against the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in an emerging market, namely in Romania. To this [...] Read more.
The objective of the article is to analyze, based on social exchange theory, the different risk and safety perceptions of employees and customers in the hospitality industry regarding the protections against the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in an emerging market, namely in Romania. To this end, a questionnaire was administered simultaneously to both categories in Romanian hospitality units obtaining a sample of 561 employees and customers in the sector. While the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 virus has generated a lot of diverse research, studies focused on this particular topic, also regarding both customers and employees, were much less exploited. Therefore, eleven working hypotheses were formulated. It was highlighted that there is a positive perception of safety at work for employees, and jobs are protected from disappearance due to the pandemic through active measures taken by the organization. Employees do not show a significant desire to change jobs due to the new working conditions. The magnitude of safety measures taken had a positive impact on the customers, and customers do not pose a significant threat in hospitality industry units regarding the possibility of infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The paper enlarges the understanding of behavioral effects of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, while from a managerial perspective the results are particularly useful for hospitality industry owners in order to attract and retain employees and to communicate and develop better relations with customers. Full article
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20 pages, 2142 KiB  
Article
Past and Future Trends in Medical Spas: A Co-Word Analysis
by Alina-Cerasela Aluculesei, Puiu Nistoreanu, Daniel Avram and Bogdan Gabriel Nistoreanu
Sustainability 2021, 13(17), 9646; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13179646 - 27 Aug 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 4685
Abstract
The present paper consists of a co-word analysis of the previous research in the medical spa field published in the Web Science Core Collection database. The study’s main purpose is to identify the past trends in the medical spa field from the tourist [...] Read more.
The present paper consists of a co-word analysis of the previous research in the medical spa field published in the Web Science Core Collection database. The study’s main purpose is to identify the past trends in the medical spa field from the tourist and medical perspectives and to anticipate the future research focuses in the field. In this regard, the article is based on four objectives that create a descriptive picture of the research in the medical spa area, such as (i) studying the current state of the art, (ii) analysing the most visible articles in the field, (iii) highlighting the leading research interests in medical spa research and (iv) anticipating new possible research trends that link cost-effective medical spa activity to COVID-19 post-recovery treatments. A total of 627 articles, published between 1997 and 2021 (March), were analysed, and the data were interpreted using the VOS Viewer software. The study results indicate that high interest in medical spas started to become observable in 2015, when the funding bodies became interested in this field and began supporting publishing and research regarding medical spas. The main subjects investigated in previous studies were related to the specific issues of the industry and tourism activity. They also considered the medical approach of the spa and the use of natural resources in treating different diseases. Except for these main interests, since 2020, it has started to become evident that another approach in the published studies may lead to a new trend in research. The study results show that researchers have begun to investigate the possibility of using medical spa resorts to aid post-COVID-19 recovery, which is considered a cost-efficient option for completing traditional treatment. This new focus in research proves that the medical spa field can rebrand itself as playing a supportive role in national healthcare systems in countries with a long tradition in balneotherapy, and gives a new developing trajectory to the medical spa industry. Full article
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18 pages, 2158 KiB  
Article
Can the Diffusion Modes of Green Technology Affect the Enterprise’s Technology Diffusion Network towards Sustainable Development of Hospitality and Tourism Industry in China?
by Keke Sun, Xia Cao and Zeyu Xing
Sustainability 2021, 13(16), 9266; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13169266 - 18 Aug 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2891
Abstract
In the post-epidemic era, encouraging enterprises to implement green technology innovation in the hospitality and tourism industry is important, which can reduce resource consumption, decrease environmental pollution and promote sustainable industrial development. Based on evolutionary game theory and Exponential Random Graph Models (ERGM), [...] Read more.
In the post-epidemic era, encouraging enterprises to implement green technology innovation in the hospitality and tourism industry is important, which can reduce resource consumption, decrease environmental pollution and promote sustainable industrial development. Based on evolutionary game theory and Exponential Random Graph Models (ERGM), this paper develops an evolutionary game model between focal and marginal enterprises and analyzes the dynamic evolutionary process and the steady state of the evolutionary strategy of the major stakeholders. The impact of different technology diffusion modes on the enterprise’s technology diffusion network is quantitatively verified using ERGM and MPNet software. The results show that the neighborhood effect has a positive impact on the technology diffusion network of enterprises in the hospitality and tourism industry, the partner effect has a negative impact on the technology diffusion network of enterprises, and the social circle effect has a significant positive effect on the technology diffusion network of enterprises in the hospitality and tourism industry. This study can help governments to develop more targeted policies that can serve as a basis for enterprises to develop dynamic strategies and can further facilitate the implementation and diffusion of green technology innovations in the hospitality and tourism industry. Full article
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22 pages, 1213 KiB  
Article
Harmonization of Green Motives and Green Business Strategies towards Sustainable Development of Hospitality and Tourism Industry: Green Environmental Policies
by Zahid Yousaf, Magdalena Radulescu, Crenguta Ileana Sinisi, Luminita Serbanescu and Loredana Maria Paunescu
Sustainability 2021, 13(12), 6592; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126592 - 9 Jun 2021
Cited by 37 | Viewed by 6095
Abstract
This study aims to investigate the direct impact of green motives (GM) and green business strategies (GBS) on sustainable development (SD) in the hospitality sector. It explores the direct links between GM and SD. Moreover, the mediating role of GBS between GM and [...] Read more.
This study aims to investigate the direct impact of green motives (GM) and green business strategies (GBS) on sustainable development (SD) in the hospitality sector. It explores the direct links between GM and SD. Moreover, the mediating role of GBS between GM and SD was tested. The research relies on the stakeholders’ theory, which states that the organization’s success and future development depends on the satisfaction of stakeholders. Data were collected from 451 top managers and owners from 54 hotels (5, 4 and 3-star hotels) operating in Pakistan. Quantitative analysis including correlation, regression, confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation model techniques were used. The mediating role of GBS was assessed using the bootstrapping method. Results proved that GM and GBS enable hotel industry to achieve the targets of SD. Finding also proved that GBS act as a mediator between the GM and SD link. The hotel industry needs attention to achieve the targets of SD and customers’ inclination towards more hygienic and environmental issues after the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic situation has forced the hotel industry to adapt GBS initiated through GM. The current research articulated this upcoming issue and offered a SD model for the hotel industry. Full article
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Review

Jump to: Research

27 pages, 3535 KiB  
Review
The Evolution of Food Security: Where Are We Now, Where Should We Go Next?
by Morteza Akbari, Pantea Foroudi, Mohana Shahmoradi, Hamid Padash, Zahra Shahabaldini Parizi, Ala Khosravani, Pouria Ataei and Maria Teresa Cuomo
Sustainability 2022, 14(6), 3634; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14063634 - 19 Mar 2022
Cited by 33 | Viewed by 9671
Abstract
Food security is one of the most challenging topics globally; however, the concept of food security has taken on additional dimensions that are general and are less detailed. This study aims to identify the intellectual structure of food security research and the changes [...] Read more.
Food security is one of the most challenging topics globally; however, the concept of food security has taken on additional dimensions that are general and are less detailed. This study aims to identify the intellectual structure of food security research and the changes in this structure. This paper analyzed 3169 documents from the Web of Science database through a bibliometric review. A review of the published documents shows an increasing trend over the past 46 years. In accordance with co-occurrence analysis, 125 keywords were grouped into five clusters: food security and sustainable development; food security and socioeconomic factors; food security policy and governance; coping strategies for poverty, inequality, and hunger; and modern food security management. This study identifies four streams within food security research: sustainability and environmental, socioeconomic, cultural, and political factors. The paper concludes that even though food security might investigate many significant areas, other new dimensions should still be considered. Further gaps in the literature emerge that present avenues for future research directions. Reviewing indicators and techniques of food security assessment and identifying high-risk groups should be a priority. Full article
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