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Fijian culture and the environment: a focus on the ecological and social interconnectedness of tourism development


Movono, A and Dahles, H and Becken, S, Fijian culture and the environment: a focus on the ecological and social interconnectedness of tourism development, Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 26, (3) pp. 451-469. ISSN 0966-9582 (2017) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

DOI: doi:10.1080/09669582.2017.1359280


Understanding the complex and adaptive nature of Pacific Island communities is a growing yet relatively unexplored area in the context of tourism development. Taking an ethnographic research approach, this study examines how over 40 years of tourism development have led to complex and multi-scale changes within an Indigenous Fijian village. The study establishes that tourism development has brought a range of ecological shifts that have, over time, spurred far-reaching changes within the embedded sociocultural constructs of the community. The development of the Naviti Resort, a water catchment dam, a causeway and a man-made island have created substantial changes in totemic associations, livelihood approaches, and traditional knowledge structures within Vatuolalai village. The emergence of internal adaptive cycles, and new behaviours, practices and values that redefine the cultural landscape will be discussed. This paper demonstrates the interconnectivity of nature, society and culture within Indigenous communal systems and asserts that ecological changes introduced in one part of a community stimulate complex, non-linear responses in other elements of the socio-ecological system of a Fijian village.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:community development, cultural change, complex adaptive systems, social change, Fiji
Research Division:Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Research Group:Tourism
Research Field:Impacts of tourism
Objective Division:Commercial Services and Tourism
Objective Group:Tourism services
Objective Field:Economic issues in tourism
UTAS Author:Dahles, H (Professor Heidi Dahles)
ID Code:146169
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:40
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2021-08-24
Last Modified:2021-09-27

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