University of Oulu

Frederico Santarém, João Carlos Campos, Paulo Pereira, Dieng Hamidou, Jarkko Saarinen, José C. Brito, Using multivariate statistics to assess ecotourism potential of water-bodies: A case-study in Mauritania, Tourism Management, Volume 67, 2018, Pages 34-46, ISSN 0261-5177,

Using multivariate statistics to assess ecotourism potential of water-bodies : a case-study in Mauritania

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Author: Santarém, Frederico1,2; Campos, João Carlos1,2; Pereira, Paulo1,2;
Organizations: 1CIBIO/InBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos da Universidade do Porto, R. Padre Armando Quintas, 4485-661 Vairão, Portugal
2Departamento de Biologia da Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto, Rua Campo Alegre, 4169-007 Porto, Portugal
3Faculté des Sciences et Techniques, Université des Sciences, de Technologie et de Médecine de Nouakchott, Nouakchott, Mauritania
4Geography Research Unit, University of Oulu, Finland
5School of Tourism and Hospitality, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2018
Publish Date: 2020-01-08


Evaluating the ecotourism potential of sites is a key issue in tourism management. Multiple methodologies have been developed to assess the ecotourism potential of sites. However, there are many constraints affecting their quality. Methodologies independent of subjective criteria and weights are lacking, compromising following interpretations on where to allocate efforts for ecotourism development. We propose a new approach to circumvent these issues that combines independent statistical procedures to assess ecotourism potential. By combining multi-criteria with ordination and clustering algorithms, this two-stage statistical approach allowed identifying suitable water-bodies for ecotourism development in Mauritania and independently assessed which features are related with ecotourism potential. The method was able to group sites for different ecotourist demands, which has implications for policy makers and tourism planners trying to optimize investments while protecting biodiversity and supporting communities. We provide a framework that is scalable and applicable by stakeholders operating in ecotourism planning and management worldwide.

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Series: Tourism management
ISSN: 0261-5177
ISSN-E: 1879-3193
ISSN-L: 0261-5177
Volume: 67
Pages: 34 - 46
DOI: 10.1016/j.tourman.2018.01.001
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 519 Social and economic geography
Funding: Financial support was given by Rufford through a Small Grant for Nature Conservation (17893-1). FS, PP, JCC, and JCB are supported by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (PD/BD/132407/2017, PD/BD/128492/2017, SFRH/BD/87885/2012, and IF/00459/2013, respectively).
Copyright information: © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license