Tourism is among the largest global market forces driving both environmental and sociocultural change, and indigenous peoples residing in biodiverse regions are particularly vulnerable to this change. As indigenous people engage with global markets, questions arise regarding how different forms of tourism privilege particular indigenous knowledge, and how local communities proactively leverage their knowledge to improve the social and environmental outcomes of tourism. The aim of this ethnographic case study in the region around Misahuallí, Ecuador is to provide a thick description of the tourism-related social, cultural, and environmental changes being faced by this indigenous community, itself a microcosm of the challenges being faced by indigenous communities across the globe. Common pool resource theory and the concepts of subtractability and non-excludability are invoked to analyze the ways that tourism influences the management of traditional cultural knowledge, and alternatively, how this knowledge influences the ways that tourism manifests in the local community. This novel application of traditional ecological knowledge and common pool resource theory to tourism research provides a critical link between these theories, and it extends existing analyses of tourism’s influence on common pool environmental resources to common pool cultural resources, in this case, traditional knowledge in Kichwa communities.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Cultural Studies
- Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
- Nature and Landscape Conservation