FROM INTENT TO ACTION
Outlook Traveller|June - July 2024
IT'S DIFFICULT TO CONVINCE TRAVELLERS AND INDUSTRY PLAYERS TO PRACTICE SUSTAINABILITY. CAN THE FIELD OF BEHAVIOURAL SCIENCE SHIFT INDUSTRY-WIDE ATTITUDES TO MAKE SUSTAINABLE TOURISM THE NORM?
EISHA GUPTA
FROM INTENT TO ACTION

AS MORE TRAVELLERS UNDERTAKE journeys that have a minimal negative impact on the planet, hospitality businesses and tour operators are waking up to the economic and planetary benefits of travelling responsibly. However, it takes work to change mindsets and convert travellers and those in the travel industry to sustainable practices.

Behavioural science—a field combining anthropology, psychology, and sociology to study the workings of the human mind and people's interactions with the world—could help change attitudes by understanding the motivations behind human behaviour and harnessing them for change.

MAKING SUSTAINABILITY EASIER

Dr Milena S Nikolova, the founder of Behavior Smart, a Bulgaria-based organisation studying behavioural science methods in the sustainable tourism industry, said to OT that most tourists are mindful of their actions but often perceive sustainability as challenging to practise.

"Many of today's decision-makers were trained to treat sustainability as a niche market segment, so the way the tourism economy operates today makes sustainability difficult, complicated and requiring much effort," she said. "Someone on holiday is seeking to get away from the responsibilities of daily life. They are eager to enjoy some time off and share memories with close ones. We cannot expect them to put that aside and focus on responsibility."

This story is from the June - July 2024 edition of Outlook Traveller.

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This story is from the June - July 2024 edition of Outlook Traveller.

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