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An empowerment approach of Indigenous ecotourism in a Mayan community in Mexico
conference contributionposted on 28.11.2018, 00:00 by A Mendoza-Ramos, Bruce PrideauxBruce Prideaux
Indigenous ecotourism in the Mayan rainforest is virtually unknown in the literature. As a result of the course of tourism in the region, this study assessed the level of empowerment in Coba, a Mayan village surrounding a major archaeological site and tourism attraction in Mexico. An empowerment framework was used to assess whether or not tourism develops in terms that ultimately benefit this community. Empowerment indicators identified from the literature were tested based on interviews conducted with indigenous ecotourism stakeholders in Mexico. Results indicate that local participation in tourism has stood out through a direct involvement in tourism, bringing economic profits and negotiation skills which have significantly empowered this Mayan village. NGOs have not participated in the local tourism development but tour operators and travel agencies have boosted local involvement in tourism and a few government programs have financially assisted the community to promote tourism.