Equitable Tourism Options

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Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) is a research, campaign and advocacy NGO working on social, cultural, economic and environmental impacts of tourism on local communities in India. Their work is directed towards enabling non-exploitative, equitable and sustainable tourism in India. They function out of Bangalore, India and were founded in 1985.[1]

Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS)
Logo of the non-profit organization Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS)
Founded 1985
Type Research, campaign and advocacy non-profit
Focus Impacts of tourism on local communities in India
Location
  • Bangalore, India
Coordinates 13°0′27.7″N 77°39′11.10″E / 13.007694°N 77.6530833°E / 13.007694; 77.6530833
Area served India
Slogan Who Really Benefits From Tourism?
Mission Tourism should be non-exploitative, equitable and sustainable
Website http://www.equitabletourism.org

About EQUATIONS[edit]

This NGO works towards awareness and mitigation of the negative impacts of tourism in India. They primarily provide analysis, initiate campaigns, advocate for law and policy changes, and network with other groups working on the issues of tourism. They rely on their network of grassroots organisations, local communities, activists, researchers, unions and experts to build perspectives from the ground.[2] The work of EQUATIONS can be categorised into six broad themes across regions of India.

Child and Tourism[edit]

EQUATIONS is a formal member of End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes - (ECPAT) International.[3] They work closely with ECPAT[4] on the mission to rid tourism of child exploitation.[5] Their main objectives are to advocate for social accountability and responsibility on the protection of children in tourism,[6] encourage collaborative and concerted action to combat the exploitation of children in tourism[7] and influence governments to incorporate child-friendly and gender-sensitive guidelines.[8]

Economic Impacts and Tourism[edit]

They evaluate the implications of international trade and economic policy on tourism development and consequent impact on local communities.[9] Since the early nineties, they have engaged with the issues of impact of globalisation,[10] trade and investment policies on tourism development.[11]

Ecosystems, Communities and Tourism[edit]

They examine tourism development from an environmental angle[12] and also linking it to the livelihoods, culture, way of living of communities dependent on natural resources.[13] They believe that tourism development must be environmentally just, respectful of the rights of local communities and sustainable.[14] EQUATIONS uses research grounded in grassroots realities and advocates[15] through networking with the government, the tourism industry, media, other civil society organisations and with communities.[16]

Governance, Law and Tourism[edit]

They monitor laws and policies and advocates concerns on the unregulated expansion of tourism in violation of rights of local communities and self governance at the grassroots level with various ministries and departments.[17] They also work with communities and individuals to build awareness and capacity towards exercising their rights in relation to tourism planning and implementation in their local region.[18]

Women and Tourism[edit]

Their work examines ways in which women can have greater access, control and ownership over livelihoods and natural resources as well as access to the benefits in the context of tourism.[19]

Tourism Education[edit]

They engage with students, academicians and tourism institutions to build awareness on tourism impacts, encouraging research and welcoming interns. Their attempt is to integrate critical perspectives on the impacts of tourism within tourism curriculum to further understanding of how tourism can be more equitable.[20]

EQUATIONS Vision[edit]

EQUATIONS envisions a just and equitable world, where all people have the freedom and the right to determine their lives and future. They envision forms of tourism which are non-exploitative, where decision making is democratised, and access to and benefits of tourism are equitably distributed. They believe in the capacity of individuals and communities to actualise their potential for the well-being of society.[21]

Campaigns and Advocacy[edit]

EQUATIONS initiates campaigns and supports people’s struggles, against unjust, undemocratic and unsustainable forms of tourism. They advocate people’s concerns with the local, regional and national government. Their advocacy aims for decentralised democracy and that communities should have a decisive voice in the access, control and ownership over their livelihood, natural resources and common resources. They try to ensure people’s experiences influences changes in tourism policies.[22]

Some of EQUATIONS campaigns and advocacy literature[edit]

  • Tourism Leave Our Coasts Alone! (September 27, 2010). On World Tourism Day 2010 they called for a re-examination of the claim that tourism and biodiversity are mutually dependent. Documenting instances of tourism's irresponsible development on the coast, they reiterated the need for stringent regulation to protect coasts and the rights and livelihoods of coastal communities in India.[23]
  • Concerns Intensify as Government Proposes to Amend Kerala Tourism (Conservation & Preservation of Areas) Act 2005 (July 7, 2010). They expressed concern over the Kerala Government’s move to amend the Kerala Tourism (Conservation & Preservation of Areas) Act 2005 through an Ordinance and later by a Bill in the Assembly in June 2010 on the grounds that it will usurp the powers and mandate of local self-governing institutions.[24]
  • Scrap the Islands Protection Zone Notification (June 3, 2010). This was a campaign expressing their concerns related to the proposed Islands Protection Zone (IPZ) Notification and highlighting the need to make the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification even stronger and ensure tourism is regulated in the fragile island ecosystems in India.
  • Zones of Contestation - Call for a Moratorium on Mega Resorts (February 24, 2009). They demanded an end to the global mega-resort boom to preserve and use wisely land and natural resources to benefit local communities.[25]
  • The issue of illegal reclamation of backwaters and Pokkali fields at Kumbalangi village in Kerala taken up by EQUATIONS played its part in getting building permits for resorts at Kumbalangi, Kerala cancelled.[26]

Recent Publications[edit]

EQUATIONS provides access to all their publications.

2010

  • Envisioning Tourism in India (June 2010) [29][30]

2009

  • The Challenge and Prospects of Tourism in Goa Today (November 2009) [31] and Claiming the Right to Say No (November 2009) [32][33]
  • Making a Difference - Dossier on Community Engagement on Nature Based Tourism in India (May 2009) [36][37]
  • Coastal Regulation in India - Why do we need a new Notification? (April 2009) [38]

2008

  • Redefining Tourism - Experiences and Insights from Rural Tourism Projects in India (November 2008) [39] and Sustainability in Tourism - A Rural Tourism Model - A Review Report (September 2008) [40][41]
  • IFIs and Tourism: Perspectives and Debates (March 2008) [46][47]
  • Public Purpose: How the Tourist Destination of Tomorrow continues to Dispossess the Adivasis of Narmada today (March 2008) [48]
  • Rights of the Child in the Context of Tourism (March 2008) [50]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "About EQUATIONS". Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  2. ^ Kunal N Talgeri (September 4, 2009). "Myriad Faces of Tourism". India: Outlook Business. 
  3. ^ "ECPAT International South Asia Directory". Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  4. ^ Joeanna Rebello Fernandes (July 18, 2010). "Male prostitution, it's common!". The Times of India (India). 
  5. ^ Alma B. Sinumlag (August 22, 2010). "Child exploitation advocacy campaign goes international". Northern Dispatch (nordis) Weekly (North Philippines). ; Jyotsna Singh (November 19, 2008). "Abuse of India's boys 'is rising'". BBC News (Delhi, India). 
  6. ^ S.Anil Radhakrishnan (December 26, 2008). "Clamping down on paedophilia". The Hindu (Kerala, India). 
  7. ^ M.G.Radhakrishnan (July 9, 2010). "Predators on the Prowl". India Today (India). 
  8. ^ "Centre’s code push to wipe off child sex tourism stain". Deccan Herald (New Delhi, India). February 2, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Peoples' Forum against ADB calls for mobilization against the Asian Development Bank at the institution's annual meetings in May". Bank Information Center. April 3, 2006. ; Imtiaz Muqbil (February 2, 2009). "Tourism And Its Impact". Bangkok Post (Bangkok, Thailand). 
  10. ^ "Slew of programmes on Tourism Day". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). September 27, 2009. 
  11. ^ "Long-term tourism strategy vital for sustainable development". The Hindu Business Line (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). September 9, 2006. ; Karma Samten Yangzom (August 25, 2010). "Focus on ‘Responsible Tourism' in N-E region". The Hindu Business Line (Gangtok, Sikkim, India). ; Sankar Radhakrishnan (May 13, 2008). "http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2008/05/13/stories/2008051350120900.htm". The Hindu Business Line (India). 
  12. ^ "Call for steps to mitigate climate change impact". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). May 24, 2007. 
  13. ^ "A voice for the voiceless Adivasis". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). November 6, 2007. ; "Forest dwellers for more rights". The Telegraph (Ranchi, Jharkhand, India). November 5, 2007. 
  14. ^ "Building permits for resort at Kumbalangi cancelled". Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India: Kerala Tourism Watch. August 4, 2008. 
  15. ^ "India’s tourism industry lacks accountability". OneWorld South Asia. September 29, 2008. 
  16. ^ Syed Liyakhat (March 31, 2007). "Tourism plans for Andamans go on, tsunami notwithstanding". India: Down to Earth. ; Pankaj Sekhsaria (June 24, 2004). "Biosphere in peril". The Hindu (India). 
  17. ^ "NGO expresses concern over tourism Bill". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). July 12, 2010. ; "Union Ministry of Tourism to evolve a Code of Conduct for all tourism service providers". India: Press Information Bureau, Government of India. November 23, 2009. 
  18. ^ "Responsibility in tourism should go beyond 3Rs". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). May 4, 2008. 
  19. ^ "Systematic ways needed to empower women". The Hindu. September 26, 2007. ; R.Ayyapan (October 19, 2007). "No Visuals that 'Commodify' Women". The New Indian Express (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). ; "Call for Databank on Women Working in Tourism". The New Indian Express (Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India). September 26, 2007. 
  20. ^ "Essay Writing and Innovation Presentation Competition for Students". September 27, 2009. ; "Tourism Education". 
  21. ^ "About EQUATIONS". 
  22. ^ "Campaigns and Advocacy". 
  23. ^ "World Tourism Day 2010 statement from EQUATIONS". UK: TourismConcern. September 27, 2010. 
  24. ^ "NGO expresses concern over tourism Bill". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). July 12, 2010. 
  25. ^ "Zones of Contestation: Call For a Moratorium on Mega-Resorts". Kerala, India: Kerala Tourism Watch. Retrieved January 19, 2011. 
  26. ^ S. Anil Radhakrishnan (August 4, 2008). "Building permits for resort at Kumbalangi cancelled". The Hindu (Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India). 
  27. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Humanity-Equality-Destiny? - Implicating Tourism in the Comm". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  28. ^ "Commonwealth Games will not boost tourism, says report". The Hindu (New Delhi, India). July 28, 2010. ; Ambika Pandit (July 28, 2010). "Games rush claim exaggerated, says NGO report". The Times of India (New Delhi, India). ; "No tourists in sight – Commonwealth Games and Tourism". BBC News (Hindi) (in Hindi) (New Delhi, India). August 28, 2010. ; "1 lakh tourists for Games. Really?". The Hindustan Times (New Delhi, India). July 27, 2010. 
  29. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Envisioning Tourism in India". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  30. ^ "Envisioning tourism in India". India Environmental Portal. Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  31. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | The Challenge and Prospects of Tourism in Goa Today". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  32. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Claiming the Right to Say No". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  33. ^ "Tourism can promote good human relations". The Times of India (Panaji, Goa, India). December 6, 2009. ; "Tourism is a powerful tool". The Hindu. December 6, 2009. ; "In tourism, Goa church sees great new tool". Panaji, Goa, India: Thaindian News. December 15, 2009. 
  34. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Nature, Markets, Tourism". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  35. ^ "Nature, Markets, Tourism - Exploring Tourism's claims to Conservation in India". Global Focus Aotearoa. Retrieved February 1, 2011. ; "Ecotourism in India". Global Forest Coalition. Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  36. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Making a Difference - Dossier on Community Engagement on Nat". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  37. ^ "Making a Difference - Dossier on Community Engagement on Nature Based Tourism in India". The African Safari Lodge Foundation. Retrieved February 1, 2011. 
  38. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Coastal Regulation in India - Why do we need a new Notificat". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  39. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Redefining Tourism - Experiences and Insights from Rural Tou". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  40. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Sustainability in Tourism - A Rural Tourism Model - A Review". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  41. ^ Kunal N Talgeri (September 4, 2010). "Myriad Faces of Tourism". India: Outlook Business. 
  42. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Rethink Tourism in the Andamans-Research Report". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  43. ^ "Rethink Tourism in the Andamans". India: Express Travel World. July 31, 2008. ; Surabhi Agarwal (August 11, 2008). "Rethink Tourism in Andamans: report". The Financial Express (India). 
  44. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Unholy Nexus: Male Child Sexual Exploitation in Pilgrim Tour". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  45. ^ "Sin in sacred places". Deccan Chronicle (Secunderabad, India). November 29, 2009. ; "ECPAT International-South Asia Publications-Unholy Nexus". ; Chetan Chauhan (March 13, 2009). "Pilgrim sites turn sex tourism hubs". Hindustan Times (New Delhi, India). 
  46. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | IFIs and Tourism: Perspectives and Debates". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  47. ^ Anita Pleumarom (2009). Change Tourism, Not Climate!. Third World Network. ISBN 978-967-5-41210-3. 
  48. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Public Purpose: How the Tourist Destination of Tomorrow con". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  49. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Right To Information And Tourism". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  50. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Rights of the Child in the Context of Tourism". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  51. ^ "Equitable Tourism Options (EQUATIONS) | Impacts Of The Proposed Himalayan Ski Village Project In Kullu, Himachal Pradesh". Equitabletourism.org. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  52. ^ "Greenwash and bluewash and all at the same time, note the use of "eco" and "responsible" tourism". FairTourism?. 

External links[edit]