University of Oulu

Siamak Seyfi, Colin Michael Hall, Jarkko Saarinen & Tan Vo-Thanh (2022) Do international sanctions help or inhibit justice and sustainability in tourism?, Journal of Sustainable Tourism, DOI: 10.1080/09669582.2022.2069785

Do international sanctions help or inhibit justice and sustainability in tourism?

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Author: Seyfi, Siamak1; Hall, Colin Michael1,2,3,4; Saarinen, Jarkko1;
Organizations: 1Geography Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Department of Management, Marketing and Entrepreneurship, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
3School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, Kalmar, Sweden
4School of Tourism & Hospitality, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
5Department of Marketing, Excelia Business School, La Rochelle, France
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: embargoed
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Informa, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-10-28


Despite the expanded use of sanctions as a soft foreign policy tool in the post-Cold War era, there is yet little knowledge on the implications of this coercive tool in relation to justice, ethics and sustainability in destinations to which sanctions are applied. Using Iran as a case study and grounded in international relations and political science literature, this study used semi-structured interviews with tourism actors to assess the direct and indirect effects of sanctions on tourism with respect to justice, rights and sustainability. The informants suggested that sanctions have worsened mobility rights, rights to communication, and the economic and financial rights of tourism actors, thereby limited their capacity to contribute to inclusive and sustainable development. Distributive pressures within Iran arising from the sanction-driven economic disruption have clearly undermined the empowerment capacity of tourism to contribute to improve gender justice, thereby standing in opposition to the principles of justice and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, notions of justice and rights are uneven in space and time, with their application inherently dependent on its definition in particular contexts. By portraying new insights from the restrictions emanating from sanctions, this study contributes to a deeper understanding of a very popular instrument of foreign policy and its humanitarian and justice implications in destinations affected by sanctions.

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Series: Journal of sustainable tourism
ISSN: 0966-9582
ISSN-E: 1747-7646
ISSN-L: 0966-9582
DOI: 10.1080/09669582.2022.2069785
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 520 Other social sciences
Copyright information: © 2022 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Sustainable Tourism on 28 April 2022, available online: