Understanding Residentsâ€™ Perception of Rural Tourism Development in Central India: An Empirical Study
Keywords:Rural Tourism, Residentsâ€™ Perception, Rural Development, Local Community Empowerment, Policy Implications
Tourism is a dynamic industry which is continuously evolving in response to the changes in the micro and macro environment. Over the years, new forms of tourism have come up like medical tourism, sports tourism, eco tourism, rural tourism, etc. The development of rural tourism has come to be regarded as a potent tool to foster development of rural communities. It has led to extensive impacts on the local rural communities. It has been widely recognised that tourism development is a double-edged sword for host communities. Not only does it generate benefits, but it also imposes costs. By evaluating these benefits and costs, local residents develop their attitudes toward tourism. Numerous studies have examined how rural residents perceive such impacts in their communities. However, these research findings are often contradictory. As perceptions and attitudes of residents towards tourism are particularly important for the future success of the tourism industry, this study bases it focus on the perception of residents towards the rural tourism development in the central region of India. In the present study, six variables such as age, gender, education level, involvement in tourism, residential proximity and length of residence, were tested. It was found that none of these six variables had a significant difference existing in the perception of rural tourism impacts, both positive and negative.
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