The psychosocial impacts of visitation and use in World Heritage areas: research and monitoring sustainable environments and encounters

Reser, Joseph P., and Bentrupperbäumer, Joan M. (2005) The psychosocial impacts of visitation and use in World Heritage areas: research and monitoring sustainable environments and encounters. In: Filho, Walter Leal, (ed.) Handbook of Sustainability Research. Environmental Education, Communication and Sustainability (20). Peter Lang , Frankfurt, Germany, pp. 235-263.

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Abstract

The research which informs this chapter constituted an interdisciplinary project addressing the biophysical and psychosocial impacts of visitation and use in the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area of Queensland, Australia. An immediate and pressing need was for a holistic framework and methodology which could encompass the scope of the research, and which was grounded in both theory and operational need and reality. A transactional biophysical and psychosocial impact assessment model was developed which distinguished and clarified differing types of impacts on the natural and built environment, as well as the differing impacts of the natural, built, and social environment on the behaviour and experience of visitors and local residents. This expanded model of biophysical and social impact assessment generated a more balanced suite of indicators for simultaneously monitoring the 'objective' and judged condition of the environment as well as the nature and quality of visitors' encounters and experience. Research findings documented a more adequate and complete picture of the multiple uses and benefits of such protected areas for both visitors and residents, and provided a sensitive and pragmatic set of procedures and measures for recording and monitoring a neglected aspect of environmental impact assessment, the impacts of a protected area environment on users and visitors, and the adequacy of management and agency presentation and protection policies and practices.

Item ID: 7371
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
Keywords: impact assessment; psychosocial factors; world heritage
ISBN: 978-3-631-52606-4
ISSN: 1434-3819
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2010 00:38
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050204 Environmental Impact Assessment @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960599 Ecosystem Assessment and Management not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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