Testing An Alternative Structural Model in Community Support for Sustainable Tourism Development in Sri Lanka

  • Ms. Shashini Gayanika ,Senior Lecturer / Head ,Department of Economics and Decision Sciences ,Faculty of Business

Tourism is one of the largest and fasted growing industries in the world and also in Sri Lanka. It is observed as a very important means of benefit to local communities. When examining residents’ support for sustainable tourism development, community empowerment plays a major role since to achieve sustainable tourism development, community leaders and developers need to view tourism as a “community industry” that enables residents to be actively involved in determining and planning future tourism development with the overall goal of improving residents’ quality of life (Franzoni, 2015). The community support models are widely tested using Social Exchange Theory (SET) over the years. However the basic assumption in SET is that power vested upon people is unidimensional whereas power is multidimensional as suggested by Scheyvens (1999).  Hence this study extend the existing residents’ support models in the literature by testing the empowerment scales suggested by Scheyvens (1999) using Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) and Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) through AMOS. The results revealed that the empowerment scales in tourism are valid and community empowerment plays an important role in gaining community support for sustainable tourism development.

Keywords— community empowerment, community support, sustainable development

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