Jotunheimen Tracking is part of a PhD project: Nature based tourism in protected areas: tradeoffs and synergies among cultural ecosystem services.
Aims of the PhD
- Where tourists go. What we want to know with this PhD project is where tourist go, how they distribute in the landscape. By knowing this, it is possible to canalize tourists for example to avoid sensitive habitats.
- What tourists like/dislike. We also want to know what tourists like or dislike from nature and the experience they have on it. We want to know whether they react on other tourists, how they behave, what they expect from ecosystems, what types of activities they are looking for. If we know this we could improve their experience and create opportunities for a sustainable tourism.
- Impacts. Another important aspect of this study is to understand the impacts caused by nature tourists, and develop a set of indicators that can easily and quickly assess the situation. It is very common that in some places the identification of impacts takes a long time, and once they are detected it might be too late to avoid major consequences. Therefore, good indicators to detect impacts on an early stage are key to avoid the degradation of the ecosystems.
- Potential conflicts. The last aspect is the potential conflicts that tourism can have with local users. This is the area that will be most closely related to CultES. We want to analyze how locals and visitors use the landscape, if they have similar patterns or not, and what kind of ecosystem services they value. By spatially mapping these patterns, we believe it will be easier to avoid potential conflicts and manage the ecosystem sustainably.