Sustainable tourism, justice and an ethic of care: toward the Just Destination

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

223 Citations (Scopus)


While a strong knowledge base has developed in sustainable tourism, theoretical links to justice and ethics have been slow to emerge at the destination level, especially about fairness, equity and justice for disadvantaged local groups, including poor, minority and indigenous populations. This paper draws upon, and justifies the use of several key philosophical traditions and social-political perspectives on justice to tackle this issue. A case study illustrates a range of justice issues experienced by local Mayan residents in Quintana Roo, Mexico, related to procedural and distributive justice, fairness and equity in the development and marketing of their natural and cultural heritage for tourism, as well as discriminatory and exclusionary practices toward that ethnic minority. Together, theoretical and empirical insights corroborate the need for a justice-oriented framework that addresses the social and cultural well-being of disadvantaged populations, and attempts to ensure that the poor are better off through tourism development and marketing. Following Rawls' concept of justice, and linked to Fainstein's Just City, a preliminary framework, based on a joint ethic of justice and care, is outlined to guide tourism development, marketing and policy making in the Just Destination and to offer performative resistance to a globalized culture of consumption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-30
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Sustainable Tourism
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Sustainable tourism, justice and an ethic of care: toward the Just Destination'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this