Sustainable Tourism: Society & Environmental Aspects

6 Weeks 5–7 hours per week recommended

Please select the start dates for your courses below.

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About this course

Tourism isalready one of the world’s largest industriesand it’s still experiencing incredible growth.Industriesof major importance worldwide,Traveland Tourismdirectly contribute$1.4 trillion (U.S.)to the global economy.One intenof the world’s total jobs are in travelandtourism and that number is growing.

Join this course if youwantto learn where this growth is coming from and whatthe effectswill be on the social and natural environment. You’ll be challengedwith more critical reflections of an industrysteeped in comfort and enjoyment.

You’llalso discoverthat tourism is more than just a powerful economic force. Tourist activities affect the environment of travel destinations and influencecultures worldwide. Tourism is very sensitive to global transformations such as changing consumer behaviour, economic developments, climate change, epidemics, or acts of terrorism. Tourism is in fact a complex phenomenon.

Toexplorethe development of the tourism phenomenonand begin to build your own reflections on the industry, you’ll be exposed to a variety of weekly insights throughout the course. These include historical backgrounds,a variety of social science approaches, common theoretical constructs, related systemic observations, andexposure toenvironmental, social and economic implications of tourism.

Basedonweekly writing exercises,you’ll be challenged to form your own argumentfora specific tourism development of your choice. You’llalso help others in providing and receiving meaningful feedback on their critical reflections of tourism phenomena.

What you’ll learn

  • How to view tourism as a complex social and environmental phenomenon
  • An overview of global tourism development in its historical context
  • Ways to distinguish differences in the social study of tourism
  • How to conceive of the sheer size and systemic development of tourism
  • To analyse mutual relationships between tourism and its environment


  • None

Meet Your Instructors

Arjaan Pellis

Lecturer Cultural Geography at Wageningen University & Research
Within the Cultural Geography Group, I work as a lecturer. My personal research focusses on the role of conflicts in conservation tourism interventions across Namibia, Kenya, Spain and Portugal. By observing conflicts across these cases I aim to explore how conflicts help to shape conservation landscapes, tourism businesses, and wider social relations.

Jonas Skutka

Teaching Assistant for Cultural Geography Group at Wageningen University & Research
I work for the Cultural Geography Group within the department of Environmental Sciences to assist with developing Massive Open Online Courses on Tourism at Wageningen University & Research. The focus of my personal interest lies in societal and environmental issues connected to tourism, namely nature resource management, slow tourism and the Arctic.

Experience Level


Learning Partner

Wageningen University

Program Type

Professional Certificate


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