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A critical review of alternative tourism: full fare tourism? A case study of Mundo Maya Johnston, Alison M. 1995

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A CRITICAL REVIEW OF ALTERNATIVE TOURISM: FULL FARE TOURISM? A CASE STUDY OF MUNDO MAYA by ALISON M. J O H N S T O N B A . The University of British Columbia, 1990  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT O F T H E R E Q U I R E M E N T S FOR T H E D E G R E E O F MASTER OF ARTS in T H E F A C U L T Y O F G R A D U A T E STUDIES Community & Regional Planning  We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  T H E UNIVERSITY O F BRITISH COLUMBIA October 1994 © A l i s o n M. Johnston, 1994  In  presenting  degree  at the  this  thesis  in  University of  partial  fulfilment  of  this thesis for  department  or  by  his  or  requirements  British Columbia, I agree that the  freely available for reference and study. I further copying of  the  agree  scholarly purposes may be her  representatives.  It  publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not  Department  of  be allowed  QOHMAOMlTM A f-e^lOMAt. PlAWA)iM^  The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  Date  DE-6 (2/88)  OOP  Library shall make  by the  understood  permission.  f  an advanced  that permission for granted  is  for  that  it  extensive  head of copying  my or  without my written  ABSTRACT  Many planners concerned about the serious social and ecological impacts associated with the tourism industry now promote a shade of tourism called 'alternative' tourism. The difference between regular tourism and alternative tourism is that the latter has the connotation of being 'full fare' or sustainable. Generally speaking, alternative tourism is no less exploitive than regular tourism. The set of tourism activities now labelled as 'alternative' is merely a sub-component of the notorious mainstream tourism model. It unleashes the same type of negative social and ecological impacts as regular tourism, because the same planning methodology is employed. Mundo Maya, an alternative tourism program launched in 1990 but marketed before proper planning had taken place, follows this trend. The problems arising from the tourism industry's interpretation of alternative tourism points to a need to revisit the theory of alternative tourism and look to the 'success stories'. If present forms of alternative tourism are not sustainable, then it is vital that a line be drawn between tourism purporting to be alternative tourism and true alternative tourism. Otherwise a valuable body of theory could be discarded on the basis of misguided implementation efforts and opportunistic marketing. Within Mundo Maya, several small-scale independent success stories exist. These illustrate the conditions under which tourism can be 'full fare'. When the gap between the theory and practice of alternative tourism is closed, alternative tourism is a viable and rewarding community development tool.  T A B L E OF CONTENTS  ABSTRACT.  T A B L E OF CONTENTS.  LIST OF T A B L E S . FIGURES & MAPS  LIST OF  ACRONYMS  G L O S S A R Y OF SPANISH TERMS  vii  ix  xi  INTRODUCTION.  CHAPTER 1: DEVELOPMENT PLANNING & SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT INTRODUCTION 4 I. Traditional Development Theory & Its Goals 5 1.1 The First Goal: Modernization 5 1.2 The Second Goal: Integration 6 1.3 The Third Goal: Higher Consumption & Economic Growth 7 II. The Reconceptualization of Development Under the NEP 8 2.1 Rethinking Economic Growth 8 2.2 The New Policy Direction 9 2.3 Synthesis of New Policy Direction by Tourism Industry 10 III. Sustainable Development 11 3.1 Definition of Sustainable Development 11 3.2 Planning Implications ...12 3.3 Sustainable Tourism 15 IV. The Ethical Dimensions of the Sustainability Debate 17 4.1 North vs. South 17 4.2 Equity 19 4.3 Power Differentials 21 V. The Role of Tourism in Development 22 5.1 Tourism as a Development Tool 22 5.2 Alternative Tourism as a Development Tool 24 CONCLUSION 26  CHAPTER 2: ALTERNATIVE TOURISM THEORY & PRACTICE INTRODUCTION 28 I. The History of Alternative Tourism 28 1.1 Green Consumerism 28 1.2 The Emergence of Alternative Tourism 29  28  - iv -  II. Evolution of the Alternative Tourism Concept 31 2.1 The Ambiguity of 'Alternative' Tourism 31 2.2 Alternative Tourism as a Response to Mass Tourism 32 2.3 Alternative Tourism as a Subversion of the D S P 33 III. Defining Alternative Tourism 34 3.1 The Theory of Alternative Tourism 34 3.2 Definition of 'Full Fare' Alternative Tourism 37 IV. The Different Shades of Alternative Tourism 40 4.1 Adventure Tourism 40 4.2 Ecotourism 40 4.3 Low Impact or Supply-side Tourism 43 CONCLUSION 44  CHAPTER 3: THE EARLY MANIFESTATIONS OF ALTERNATIVE TOURISM IN MESOAMERICA INTRODUCTION 48 I. Economic Diversification Through Alternative Tourism 48 1.1 Problems Facing the Mayan Region 48 1.2 Solutions Contemplated by Regional Planners 52 II. Regional Tourism Collaboration 54 2.1 Conception of La Ruta Maya 54 2.2 Description of La Ruta Maya 56 CONCLUSION 58  CHAPTER 4: THE CONCEPT & STRUCTURE OF MUNDO MAYA INTRODUCTION 60 I. The Concept Behind Mundo Maya 60 1.1 The Birth of Mundo Maya 60 1.2 Evolution of the Mundo Maya Concept 61 1.3 Objectives of Mundo Maya 62 1.4 Target Market of Mundo Maya 62 II. Structure of Mundo Maya 64 2.1 Organizational Framework of Mundo Maya 64 2.2 Involvement of the Private Sector 64 2.3 The Creation of Destination Circuits 66 2.4 Intra-Regional & External Technical Assistance 67 CONCLUSION 69  60  CHAPTER 5: POLICIES FACILITATING & INHIBITING MUNDO MAYA INTRODUCTION 70 I. Policies Facilitating the Achievement of Mundo Maya Goals 70 1.1 Complementary Policy in Mexico 70 1.2 Complementary Policy in Guatemala 73 1.3 Complementary Policy in Belize 79 II. Policies Threatening the Achievement of Mundo Maya Goals 80 2.1 Background 80 2.2 Cancun as the Gateway to Mundo Maya 80 2.3 Conflicting Policies in the Laconddn and Pet6n Rainforests 83  70  - V-  2.3(a) Road Building 85 2.3(b) Colonization 85 2.3(c) Cattle Ranching 87 2.3(d) Oil Exploration 87 2.3(e) Hydro-Electric Projects 88 2.4 Summary of Policies Threatening Mundo Maya CONCLUSION 92  CHAPTER 6: MARKETING MUNDO MAYA INTRODUCTION 94 I. The Alternative Tourist 95 1.1 Definition & Discussion of Alternative Tourists 1.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya II. Narrowing the Target Market of Mundo Maya 2.1 European Alternative Tourists 99 2.2 American Mass Tourists 101 2.3 Cultural Tourists: The Alleged Target Market 2.4 Archaeological Tourists: The Real Target Market CONCLUSION 105  90  94  95 97 99  102 104  CHAPTER 7: MUNDO MAYA PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS INTRODUCTION 108 I. Public Sector Brochures 109 1.1 Mexican Ministry of Tourism Brochures 109 1.2 Guatemalan Ministry of Tourism Brochures 109 1.3 Mundo Maya Organization Brochures 111 1.4 Summary of Public Sector Mundo Maya Brochures 113 II. Private Sector Brochures 113 2.1 Introduction 113 2.2 Smorgasbord Category 114 2.3 High-End Study Category 114 2.4 Action Category 115 2.5 Concerned Citizens Category 116 2.6 Committed Citizens Category 116 2.7 Volunteer Category 118 2.8 Summary of Private Sector Mundo Maya Brochures 118 CONCLUSION 119  CHAPTER 8: DEMAND-SIDE OR PSEUDO ALTERNATIVE INTRODUCTION 122 I. Visitation Levels 122 1.1 Industry Trends 122 1.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya II. The Social & Ecological Impacts 127 2.1 Industry Trends 127 2.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya III. Demand-Side Pricing & Profit Distribution  TOURISM  123  129 131  108  122  - vi -  3.1 Industry Trends 3.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya CONCLUSION  131 134 136  CHAPTER 9: SUPPLY-SIDE OR TRUE ALTERNATIVE TOURISM INTRODUCTION 141 I. Getting Mundo Maya Back on Track 142 1.1 Deliberate Policy 142 1.2 Integrated Planning 143 II. Bottom-up Development 144 2.1 Top-Down vs. Bottom-up Development 144 2.2 Models for Bottom-up Development 147 2.2(a) Equity Partnerships 147 2.2(b) Common Interest Partnerships 149 2.2(c) Community Ownership 152 2.2(d) The Imaginative Entrepreneur 154 CONCLUSION 160  141  CHAPTER 10: THE PREREQUISITES FOR S U C C E S S F U L BOTTOM-UP DEVELOPMENT. 162 INTRODUCTION 162 I. The Three Fundamental Pre-Requisites 162 1.1 Government Support for Grassroots Initiatives 162 1.2 Community Participation 164 1.3 Human Rights 168 CONCLUSION 173  CONCLUSION  BIBLIOGRAPHY  174  177  APPENDIX 1 207 Analysis of Private Sector Alternative Tourism Brochures on C a s e Study Region - Corporate Words vs. Deeds (Tables 6-11)  APPENDIX 2 213 Analysis of Private Sector Alternative Tourism Brochures on C a s e Study Region - Corporate Field Practices (Tables 12-17)  APPENDIX 3 Maps on C a s e Study Region  219  - Vll -  LIST OF T A B L E S . FIGURES & MAPS  TABLES: T A B L E 1:  Summary of Private Sector Brochures (p. 120, 121)  T A B L E 2: T A B L E 3:  Visitation Levels at Mexican Archaeological Sites - 1989 (p. 139) Visitation Levels at Mexican Ecological Sites - 1989 (p. 139)  T A B L E 4: T A B L E 5:  Park Fees in Worldwide Alternative Tourism Destinations (p. 140) Park Fees in Mundo Maya Alternative Tourism Destinations (p. 140)  TABLE TABLE TABLE TABLE TABLE  Smorgasbord Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 207) High-End Study Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 208) Action Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 209) Concerned Citizens Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 210) Committed Citizens Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 211 (a) and (b)) Volunteer/Genuine Study Category - Corporate Words Versus Deeds (Appendix 1, p. 212)  6: 7: 8: 9: 10:  T A B L E 11:  TABLE TABLE TABLE TABLE TABLE  12: 13: 14: 15: 16:  T A B L E 17:  Smorgasbord Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 213 (a) and (b)) High-End Study Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 214) Action Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 215) Concerned Citizens Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 216) Committed Citizens Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 217 (a) and (b) ) Volunteer/Genuine Study Category - Corporate Field Practices (Appendix 2, p. 218)  FIGURES: FIGURE FIGURE FIGURE FIGURE  1 2 3 4  FIGURE FIGURE FIGURE FIGURE  5 6 7 8  The Emergence of Sustainability Concerns (p. 13) Sustainability Criteria (p. 16) Alternative Tourism as an Inversion of Traditional Development Planning (p. 27) Conceptualizations of Tourism Under the Dominant Social Paradigm & New Environmental Paradigm (p. 36) Tourism Products Under the Dominant Social Paradigm (p. 46) The Alternative Tourism Sustainability Scale (p. 47) 'Full Fare' Criteria (p. 148) Tourism Products Under the New Environmental Paradigm (p. 161)  - VIII -  MAPS: MAP 1: MAP 2: MAP 3:  v  The Maya World (Including Archaeological Sites & Biosphere Reserves) (Appendix 3, p. 219) San Crist6bal de las Casas & Surrounding Towns (Appendix 3, p. 220) Biosphere Reserve Zoning (Appendix 3, p. 221)  - ix -  LIST OF  ACRONYMS  AT  Alternative tourism  CECON  The Centre for Conservation Studies, University of San Carlos (Guatemala)  CI  Conservation International  DSP  Dominant Social Paradigm  EEC  The European Economic Community  FONATUR  The National Trust Fund for Tourism Infrastructure (Mexico)  INGUAT  Guatemalan Ministry of Tourism  IAF  Inter-American Foundation  ICUN  International Union for the Conservation of Nature  IDB  Inter-American Development Bank  LICs  Lower-income countries  LIT  Low impact tourism  LRMCF  La Ruta Maya Conservation Foundation  NCPA  National Council for Protected Areas (Guatemala)  NECs  National Ecotourism Councils  NEP  New Environmental Paradigm  NGO  Non-governmental organization  OAS  Organization of American States  OMM  Mundo Maya Organization  PATA  Pacific Asia Travel Association  PEMEX  P&roleos M6xicanos (Mexico's state corporation)  petroleum  - X -  PIDER  Integrated Programme for Rural Development (Mexico)  PPP  Paseo Pantera Program  SECTUR  Mexican Ministry of Tourism  UNDP  United Nations Development Programme  UNEP  United Nations Environment Programme  UNESCO  United Nations Educational, Scientific, & Cultural Organization  U.S. AID  United States Agency for International Development  USD  American dollars  WWF  World Wildlife Fund  - xi -  GLOSSARY OF SPANISH TERMS  Cacique  The local political boss, usually ladino as opposed to indigenous (see Footnote 131)  Campesinos  Indigenous and ladino peasants  Ejido  Traditional indigenous village land, often communal (Mexico)  Gringo  Derogatory term used by Latinos to refer to Americans (Canadians usually grouped in this category as well)  Ladino  Traditionally implies mixed (i.e. white/indigenous) blood; presently refers to any Spanish-speaking Mesoamerican rejecting his/her indigenous heritage and/or values  La Ruta Maya  The Mayan Route program  Latinos  Latin Americans  Milpa  Small field, usually producing maize  Mundo Maya  Mayan World program  Organizacidn Mundo Maya  Mayan World Organization  Partido Revolucionario Institutional  The Institutional Revolutionary Party (Mexico's ruling political party for last several decades)  Paseo Pantera  Panther or Jaguar Path program  PGtroleos M6xicanos  Mexico's state-owned petroleum company  -1INTRODUCTION  This thesis examines the theory of alternative tourism ("AT") in relation to the Mundo Maya (Mayan World) program launched in Mesoamerica in 1990. I was moved by travels in the region to question how poverty and environmental degradation could be redressed in the face of the extreme power differentials and class conflicts there.  During this process, my own self-righteousness as a  tourist and a foreigner became apparent. The ethical dimensions of working as a planner hit home. Could one realistically expect a model for sustainable development like AT to work in a socially polarized situation? Controversial issues like human rights would have to be resolved in order for this to occur. I consider AT a promising tool for sustainable community development; notwithstanding, I share other academics' concerns about the transgression of its central principles during implementation. The purpose of this thesis is to pinpoint the gap between the theory and practice of AT and explore the philosophical and management issues key in closing that gap. To that end, I borrow the concept for 'full fare' tourism developed by Dr. Peter Williams of the Centre for Tourism Policy & Research at Simon Fraser University as an analytical framework. Wlliams' (1991) conceptualization of 'full fare' or sustainable tourism makes clear the bases by which AT may be considered an alternative to regular tourism. Evaluating Mundo Maya's performance against the criteria suggested by Williams' 'full fare' concept, and the goals outlined in Mundo Maya conceptual documents, reveals why different facets of the program are either succeeding or failing from a sustainability perspective. The questions asked in this thesis are policy-oriented.  This has shaped the research  methodology, since Mundo Maya is still too new a program to be analyzed to any significant extent in industry literature.  I conducted a literature review of industry and academic journals, tourism  conference proceedings, travel articles in newspapers and popular magazines, plus alternative travel guides and travel memoirs on the case study region. Even so, a large portion of the preparatory work involved primary research. I travelled to Mexico City in October, 1992 to obtain official conceptual, planning, and marketing documents for Mundo Maya (spanning 1982-1993) from the Mexican Ministry of Tourism ("SECTUR"). I then solicited brochures (1991/92) from 30 North American alternative tour  companies offering Mundo Maya itineraries. I also conducted interviews focusing on crucial issues identified through the literature review and my undergraduate background in Latin American studies. Due to limited time and financial resources, these interviews targeted three key informants: Alfredo Toriello, Guatemala's private sector representative in the Mundo Maya Organization ("OMM"); Ray Ashton, Regional Director of the Mundo Maya affiliated Paseo Pantera (Jaguar or Panther Path) program; and Betty Faust, professor of contemporary Mayan anthropology at Oregon State University. Each informant was asked a different set of open-ended questions according to their area of expertise. The first two were interviewed in person during the 1992 World Congress on Adventure Travel & Ecotourism in Whistler, Canada, with Mr. Toriello making himself available for close to ten hours of questioning. Dr. Faust, on the other hand, agreed to a series of telephone interviews. Through this thesis I set out to answer four main questions: What are the impacts of AT in the case study region? How does AT theory suggest these impacts be mitigated? Why does the theorypractice gap of AT exist? And how can true or 'full fare' AT be made a reality? These questions, seemingly concise, opened the door to a number of complex and inter-related issues. Topics such as sustainability, community participation, and human rights - each controversial in its own right - surfaced repeatedly in relation to one another. In the absence of a coherent body of literature tying these issues to Mundo Maya, I often had to formulate independent conclusions. The findings of this thesis are thus more speculative than conclusive. Above all, I hope that the document will provoke thought and feedback. Indeed, feedback is invited. The research questions are addressed over the course of ten chapters. Chapter 1 opens with a discussion of development and sustainable development theories, which is intended to sensitize the reader to the rationale behind AT. Chapter 2 presents the theory of AT and defines 'full fare' AT. Chapter 3 introduces the practice of AT in the case study region, paying special attention to the early manifestation of Mundo Maya known as La Ruta Maya (The Mayan Route). Chapter 4 summarizes  the concept and structure of Mundo Maya. Chapter 5 outlines the policies facilitating or inhibiting the realization of the goals outlined in Mundo Maya conceptual documents and clarifies the relationship between conservation (i.e. through parks and biosphere reserves) and tourism. Chapter 6 analyzes the marketing of Mundo Maya to determine how well present marketing policy facilitates 'full fare' AT. Chapter 7 assesses public and private sector brochures on Mundo Maya against my interpretation of Williams' (1991) 'full fare' criteria. Chapter 8 discusses the negative impacts of demand-side AT in Mundo Maya. Chapter 9 presents a supply-side (or bottom-up) prescription for getting Mundo Maya back on a sustainable track, giving concrete examples of the successful practice of 'full fare' AT. Chapter 10 elaborates upon the prerequisites for successful bottom-up development through the AT model.  Chapter 1: DEVELOPMENT PLANNING & SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT  Introduction  Alternative tourism ("AT") projects undertaken in lower-income countries ("LICs") are often billed as development (see SECTUR 1991 "D"). It is therefore quite difficult to discuss tourism policy in isolation from a country's overall development agenda. An integrated approach to development planning (see Chapters 5 and 9) precludes any such dichotomies. Development planners, though increasingly wary of the negative impacts of tourism , remain 1  aware of tourism's potential. Now the decision is not just whether to pursue tourism, but what type of tourism.  Many look with hope at countries like Costa Rica and Ecuador that have 'successfully'  pursued ecotourism. These countries seem to prove what recent literature argues: that ecotourism can foster sustainable rural development (Baez 1992). In Mesoamerica, planners are keenly aware of the development potential of tourism. Mundo Maya was designed specifically to promote the development of regions and communities that have traditionally been marginalized (see SECTUR 1992). An explicit goal of the program is to promote rural development (Toriello 1992 "B"). Many will argue that tourism, particularly AT, is a useful development tool; only true or 'full fare' AT, however, can foster sustainable development.  The criteria for sustainable development are  discussed below. These, combined with the following discussion of development theory, will sensitize the reader to the rationale behind AT.  • Tourism can register as a net benefit in the host country's bank account while actually eroding qualitative development indicators (Nash 1981; Srisang 1988). See Daly & Cobb (1989) argument as to why prevailing accounting methods fail to reflect the true costs of an industry such as tourism.  I. Traditional Development Theory & Its Goals 1.1 The First Goal: Modernization  Development planning conducted under the Dominant Social Paradigm ("DSP") stresses 2  modernization.  Since the 1950s the belief "What is best for the rich must be best for the poor"  (Schumacher 1973: 139) has been espoused by 'northern' and 'southern' politicians alike. LICs aspire to living conditions comparable to those in the United States and Europe (Marsh 1987). Development is generally seen as a desirable process (Marsh 1987; Loeb & Paredes 1991) "of replacing so-called 'backward ways,' that is, traditional culture, with 'modern, industrial ways' similar to those of Western Europe and the United States" (Loeb & Paredes 1991: 31; see also Stiles 1991). In this process, European concepts of order, progress, and culture are imposed on recipient communities (see Cohn 1988). More often than not this transfer of values is detrimental rather than beneficial to the recipient community (Kia 1984). In many instances, the results "...have been quite the reverse of community development. They have consistently and systematically destroyed existing traditional communities  2  In the course of this thesis, two opposing paradigms are discussed: the Dominant Social Paradigm ("DSP") and the New Environmental Paradigm ("NEP") (see Milbrath 1989). The former, which values "material acquisition, expansion, competition, and an obsession with 'hard technology' and 'hard science' (Capra 1988: 193-194; see also Berman 1988:189), has been entrenched for some time now through modern economic theory and its corollaries. The latter, a challenge and hence potential alternative to the DSP, is ascendant. Academics, significant portions of the conservation and development communities, and grassroots organizations are all forwarding arguments based on sustainability for acceptance of the NEP. Capra (1988: 30-32) and Daly & Cobb (1989: 6-8,146) describe this looming 'paradigm shift.' Academics have formulated various definitions of 'paradigm.' Cotgrove (1982: 27) refers to the DSP in stating that a paradigm "is dominant not in the statistical sense of being held by most people, but in the sense that it is the paradigm held by dominant groups in industrial societies; and in the sense that it serves to legitimate and justify the institutions and practices of a market economy." This conceptualization illustrates why "The struggle to universalize a paradigm is part of the struggle for power" (Cotgrove 1982: 88). It also explains why a paradigm shift is so slow to evolve. A paradigm is essentially ideology (Cotgrove 1982) and is thus encumbered with a vast socio-political machinery. Milbrath's (1989: 7) observation that" A social paradigm contains the survival information needed for the maintenance of a culture" points to why the NEP has emerged. An increasing number of political constituencies concerned about long-term sustainability are rejecting the DSP as a whole or in parts because the beliefs underlying are shown by current environmental and social dilemmas to be outdated. A paradigm is ultimately a guide to action' (see Cotgrove 1982: 88). In this capacity the DSP is now defunct (Berman 1988; Capra 1988; Daly & Cobb 1989).  in the rural areas where most people in the Third World still live." (Daly & Cobb 1989: 166) In Mesoamerica, the preoccupation with modernization has governed regional development planning (Blauert & Guidi 1992). Mundo Maya evolved under this influence.  1.2 The Second Goal: Integration  Integration ideology is central to traditional development theory. Integration is the vehicle for modernization. Through standardized models of education, community development, and governance the recipient community is taught the foreign ways it 'should' aspire to. Lau (1989) links integration to cultural assimilation. Like Loeb & Paredes (1991) and Stiles (1991), Lau argues that traditional development planners follow "paternalist policies which consider indigenous social structures to be 'refuges of backwardness' which ought to be done away with." She also maintains that "in the majority of cases... [they] treat indigenous people as children on whom a determined way of life has to be imposed ..." (Lau 1989: 81). Integrationist policies typically get poor farmers out of the field and into paying jobs (see Runge 1986); this, in turn, draws them into the formal economy and dominant society. Bob Bates, Australian owner of Ambua Lodge in Papua New Guinea , maintains that many rural poor want "to modernize by 3  moving from subsistence farming to wage employment" (Mclntyre 1992). however, increasingly suggests the contrary.  Grassroots feedback,  In Mesoamerica, rural development policies ignoring  indigenous social interests and technical knowledge in the name of integration have only exacerbated environmental degradation and socio-political conflicts (see Blauert & Guidi 1992: 191). There is now  The Ambua Lodge, located in the Tari Valley of Papua New Guinea, consists of 40 individual cottages fashioned after local village architecture. Its clientele is chiefly scholars and study groups, which make the lodge their expedition base. The lodge is staffed by members of the local Huli clan and offers Huli-guided village tours, but the Huli do not partake directly in lodge profits (Mclntyre 1992). 3  a cohesive indigenous movement dedicated to the affirmation and revival of traditional subsistence practices through mechanisms like AT (see Chapter 9). Mundo Maya is a regional integration and development program (see OMM 1992 "C") seeking sustainable alternatives to the region's agricultural based economies (Toriello 1992 "A" and "B"). Integration, in the Mesoamerican context, can be interpreted in three different ways. Mundo Maya represents a regional effort to combine forces in AT marketing; it is part of a broader attempt by Mexico to bring living standards in the impoverished south-east to par with the rest of the country; it might also be said to constitute a bid by member governments to bring Mayan enclaves under stricter political control.  1.3 The Third Goal: Higher Consumption & Economic Growth  The notion of modernization through integration rests on the premise that standard of living is related to per capita consumption . Old school economists believe "that a man who consumes more 4  is 'better off than a man who consumes less" (Schumacher 1973: 47) Economists' preoccupation with consumption levels has produced a quantitative approach to development planning (see Daly & Cobb 1989: 63). Economic growth is the fundamental goal of development (Milbrath 1989) and hence the prime concern of Latin American development planners (Riegert 1991). It is "held to be the cure for poverty, unemployment, debt repayment, inflation, balance of payment deficits, pollution, depletion, the population explosion..." (Daly 1991: 183) As Daly (1991: 206) notes, economic growth is "the only acceptable cure for poverty... because redistribution is politically unthinkable" . 5  4  S e e Capra 1988: 215 and Daly & Cobb 1989: 77.  Economic growth is attractive to regional power brokers because in their eyes it would perpetuate the sociopolitical status quo (Gruson 1990). Land reform, identified by academics and grassroots organizations as a prerequisite for sustainable development (Cultural Survival Quarterly 1991), is a politically explosive topic in Mesoamerica (Weinberg 5  The pre-occupation with economic growth has fuelled the debt crisis in LICs, as "The way to grow is to invest, and the way to invest is to borrow" (Daly & Cobb 1989: 232).  Many debt-ridden  countries are now seeking less capital intensive growth strategies. A T demands less investment capital than traditional tourism (see O M M 1991).  Mundo Maya planners thus view it as an economical tool  for improving member countries' balance of payments (see O M M 1991).  II. The Reconceptualization of Development Under the NEP 2.1 Rethinking Economic Growth While LICs seek more affordable economic growth strategies, an increasing number of development planners are reassessing the desirability of economic growth. Many refute the notion that development should be equated with it. Opponents of the economic growth school of thought refute G N P as the principal measure of development (see Berman 1988; Capra 1988; Daly & Cobb 1989). S o m e fault the purely quantitative approach taken by G N P advocates. Dieke (1989), for example, points out that: "'Level of development' is not a simple concept; its determination is " complicated. Gross national product is only one, very imperfect, indicator of it... development may also be measured by the extent to which wealth, skills and education are distributed among the local population; or the strength and resilience of local cultural tradition" (Dieke 1989: 13). Others, like Schumacher (1973), argue that the pursuit of growth of G N P breeds neocolonialism . 6  1991 "A"). The elite seek a prescription for development that avoids 'redividing the pie'. According to Gruson (1990), the "underlying assumption of the five conservative presidents [in Central America] - indeed, the gamble implicit in their plan - is that they can^buy social peace... by increasing national wealth" through regional cooperative initiatives like Mundo Maya (Gruson 1990: E3). Conceptual documents released by the OMM support Gruson's (1990) hypothesis: "With this alternative [of low impact tourism], the social profit from sustainable investments is greater and is generously distributed to the entire population" (OMM 1991: 2). 6  Schumacher defines neocolonialism as "the dependence created when a poor country falls for the production and  consumption patterns of the rich" (Schumacher 1973: 163).  Critics of the quantitative approach to measuring 'progress' believe that development can occur without economic growth. They assert that confusing growth with development leads to treating the symptoms rather than the disease (Robinson et al. 1990). Attempts to clearly differentiate between the two have thus been made. Daly (1991) states: "Simply put, growth is quantitative increase in physical dimensions; development is qualitative improvement in nonphysical characteristics. An economy can therefore develop without growing..." (Daly 1991: 224)  2.2 The New Policy Direction  Disenchantment with traditional development theory and its promise of 'trickle down' began in the mid-1970s (Cernea 1991).  Despite continuing rhetoric, economic growth never delivered  improvements to rural or urban poor. Living standards in LICs have declined steadily (Hassan 1993). Critics of the 'old school' approach often came from a development anthropology or sociology perspective (see Cernea 1991). They challenged the definition of development as being essentially economic, and focused attention of the social, political, and human dimensions of it instead (de Kadt 1979).  The discourse in anthropological and sociological forums led to a reconceptualization of  development.  The new definition of development "is not limited to issues like material expansion,  increased cash income, and high formal employment, but also involves social and cultural issues, the potential for increased political power, and the possibility of widened future options" (Altman 1989: 460). Welfare (i.e. quality of life) goals take precedence over easily quantified but highly abstract economic ones (Schurmann 1981; Marsh 1987). A decade ago consensus over the new orientation of development policy existed in the literature only (Schurmann 1981). Development in the field continued to be carried out in accordance with the old model. Now, however, old and new are being practised side-by-side.  - 10 -  Many of the initiatives successfully incorporating the new development ideals are small-scale and thus discounted as impractical by 'old school' development planners.  Notwithstanding, the  message from the field continues to be the same. Extension agents attest to the need for a total reorientation of development practice. As the notion of re-orienting development policy gains acceptance, there is increased discourse about "matching the scale of solutions to the scale of the problems at hand" (Forester 1989: 172). Macro-economic indicators of development can be gauged at the national level; quality of life, in contrast, makes itself felt in the community and household. Hence the surging interest in 'bottom up' or community-based initiatives. 'Bottom up' development, the antithesis to modernization ideology, fosters self-reliance as opposed to dependency (see Uphoff 1991: 491).  This self-reliance is made possible through  "appropriate intellectual gifts of relevant knowledge on the methods of self-help" (Schumacher 1973: 165). AT, in its pure form, is one such gift. Communities can learn from success stories elsewhere how to implement their own AT program.  2.3 Synthesis of New Policy Direction by Tourism Industry  The tourism industry has kept apace with policy changes in the development community. The Manila Declaration adopted by the World Tourism Conference in 1980 "placed tourism firmly in a 'quality of life' context" (WTO Secretariat 1989: 7). The Hague Declaration on Tourism issued in 1989 followed suit, calling for balanced and integrated planning that would extend the benefits of tourism to the community level (WTO 1989). Only with the advent of AT, however, did the industry articulate its own vision for this new type of development. AT "has meant many things, all of which run counter to mainstream development" (Emanuel de Kadt, paraphrased in Nash & Butler 1990: 263). Small, community-run guest houses are  -11 -  cropping up in villages that formerly might have participated in the industry on very different terms. The Tufi guest house program in Papua New Guinea exemplifies the new approach. "Should the tourist market collapse, [the Tufi] will find themselves still with food and shelter - a situation quite different from others tied to developments which create total dependency as, for example, when land is turned over completely to cash crops, or individuals migrate to urban centres" (Ranck 1987: 165).  III. Sustainable Development 3.1 Definition of Sustainable Development  The publication of the Brundtland Report in 1987 signified a new era in decision-making. The report was in many senses a conservative document: "development is not distinguished from [economic] growth in the Brundtland Report... Politically this was wise on the part of the author. They managed to put high on the international agenda a concept whose unstated implications were too radical for consensus at that time. But in doing so they have guaranteed eventual discussion of these radical implications" (Daly & Cobb 1989: 76). However, it introduced the concept of sustainability to decision-making forums around the world. Following its publication, sustainability "[was] endorsed by the United Nations and all its many development agencies and urged upon all member countries" (Daly 1991: 242). People in boardrooms and living rooms alike became familiar with the term. As Vivian (1992) noted, sustainable development has a plethora of meanings and emphases. The Brundtland definition - "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs" (WCED 1987: 43) - is in principle widely accepted but leaves considerable room for interpretation in terms of implementation. While most use the term as if consensus exists concerning its desirability, it is clear that "'Sustainable development' means different things to ecologists, environmental planners, economists and environmental activists... The  - 12 -  different uses made of the concept... reflect varying disciplinary biases, distinctive paradigms and ideological disputes" (Redclift 1992: 25). The discord existing over the definition of sustainable development reflects differing agendas. Each interest group has its own reason(s) for endorsing the sustainable development concept, ranging from political or monetary gain to deep-seated ethical convictions.  While most can agree that  sustainable development means "that renewable resources should be exploited on a sustained yield basis" (Daly 1991: 253-254), there is acrimony over how to treat non-renewable resources. Some believe the objective of sustainability to be the existence of'the human race on Earth for as long as possible (Tisdell 1985).  Others take a less anthropocentric or more qualitative approach. These  differences of opinion are reflected in policy advocacy.  3.2 Planning Implications  The reconceptualization of 'development' preceded sustainability discussions by nearly two decades . The evolution of thought in development and sustainable development spheres, however, 7  essentially proceeded in parallel. The emergence of a language of sustainability merely signalled wider acceptance and understanding of the same issues. What was once an isolated academic concern had become a pressing global concern [see Figure 1]. While a common thought process is evident in development and sustainable development spheres with regard to new ideals, there is a divergence of opinion within each vis-a-vis future policy. Agreeing in principle or on points of theory is easy once the supporting facts are tabled; charting the  The environmental movement itself gained momentum in the 1960s; however, sustainability concerns did not enter policy circles until the Brundtland era.  - 13 -  FIGURE 1:  THE EMERGENCE OF SUSTAINABILITY CONCERNS  Grassroots Feedback  Scientific Data  Socially Driven  Economic Disillusionment  Ecologically Driven  Sustainability Concerns  Environmental Movement  - 14 -  new course is not. The latter implies change, which can be threatening if one is not an immediate benefactor of it . 8  The split at the policy level is perhaps most visible in the sustainable development sphere ('B' above). The acceptance of 'sustainability' as a desirable goal by a diverse global audience did not bring easy consensus over how to achieve it. Some argue that sustainability is attainable through the status quo; others like Milbrath (1989) insist that a complete paradigm shift is required. Development planners, though seasoned veterans in the 'good versus bad' debate, are little more cohesive as a group. Many view sustainability "as a goal which can be achieved through making adjustments to the standard development models" (Redclift 1992: 23). Others like Redclift (1992) and those discussed above, meanwhile, maintain that sustainability represents an alternative to - rather than modification of - the prevailing approach. Despite these divisions , there is an articulate voice in each camp calling for more far-reaching 9  changes in beliefs, attitudes, and social practices than those implied in the Brundtland report (Robinson 1990). Robinson (1990: 37), for instance, maintains that "What is needed... is an attempt to imagine different, more desirable futures."  Berman (1988), Capra (1988) and Daly & Cobb (1989) all offer  strong arguments in this regard. There is now considerable cross-over between development theory and sustainable development issues.  Academics might distinguish between the two, ascribing the latter to the  environmental movement.  However, to most professionals working in the field of international  development/community development is to some degree synonymous with sustainable development.  Sustainable development proponents argue that long-term gains by society as a whole take precedence over short-term gains by a few. Which in each case boil down to 'pro status quo' versus 'anti status quo', with advocates on each side forging alliances with those in other camp - hence the partnerships between indigenous federations, environmental groups, and community development NGOs. 9  - 15 -  In other words, sustainability - however that is defined - is now a baseline criteria for proposed development projects [see Figure 2]. The United Nations Environment Programme ("UNEP") assesses the sustainability of proposed development projects through a set of qualitative criteria. The questions asked include the following: 'Does it promote fair and equitable distribution of benefits and costs?  Does it maintain choice of  lifestyles? Does it take into account minority rights? Does it meet community aspirations?' (Tolba & El-Kholy 1992). These questions, applied in a tourism context, are instrumental in determining whether or not the given project or program constitutes 'full fare' tourism [see Figure 7].  3.3 Sustainable Tourism  Since the publication of the Brundtland Report in 1987, politicians and corporations alike have capitalized on associated market demands by announcing initiatives based on the sustainable development theme. Mundo Maya springs from this trend. In Mesoamerica, as elsewhere, people "at all levels of the development system are planning and promoting tourism as the sustainable industry of choice" (Johnston 1990: page unknown). The blueprint for 'alternative' or sustainable tourism is a product of both field experience and the wider environmental movement. Traditional mass tourism is now known to impede community development and conservation goals. According to Vivian, "The current coincidence of interest in sustainable development emerges from developmentalists' increasing recognition of the importance of preserving natural resources if development is to continue; and conservationists' growing acceptance that, without development, preservation is not possible" (Vivian 1992: 55). Sustainable tourism , as such, is "a theoretical compromise between the needs of poor countries for economic development and the necessity of conserving their natural resources for future use" (M.C. Roque, senior fellow of the WWF quoted in PATA 1991: 24).  - 16 -  FIGURE 2:  SUSTAINABILITY CRITERIA  SOCIAL  ECOLOGICAL  • Meaningful community participation • Fosters human dignity • Enhances future options •Promotes equity  Respects ecological thresholds Recognizes human fallibility Emphasizes qualitative & 'intangible' values  Sustainable Development  PLANNING • Participatory or 'bottom up' • Integrated • Iterative • Proactive  PERSONAL • Compassion • Need not greed • Double standards addressed • Personal role & stake identified  - 17 -  Mundo Maya is purportedly a sustainable tourism program. Toriello (1992: 1) describes it as "a response to the need to protect the environment by seeking sound social and economic development". The OMM, meanwhile, asserts that "In regional tourism planning, environmental goals and development alternatives that assure the welfare of local populations and ecological biodiversity occupy a central place in the agendas of Mundo Maya countries" (OMM 1991: 1).  It maintains  sustainable tourism will enhance future opportunities for local communities (OMM 1992 "A"). Mundo Maya planners are not the only regional interest group familiar with sustainable development jargon. Several indigenous, peasant, and environmental organizations active in the region have incorporated it into their platforms as well. They have learned quickly "to hold officialdom to its environmental rhetoric by tabling demands in a language that has suddenly become acceptable to a government trying hard to contain protest over social injustice" (Blauert & Guidi 1992: 215). The implications of this positioning over regional sustainable development are discussed in Chapter 9.  IV. The Ethical Dimensions of the Sustainability Debate 4.1 North vs. South  Many of the emerging theories concerning sustainable development are drawing criticism from the South (i.e. LICs). There is, for instance, considerable resentment in tropical countries toward northern 'do-gooders' who want to preserve rainforests through mechanisms like parks, biosphere reserves [see Map 3], and ecotourism (Caulfield 1986) . 10  10  11  The relationship of parks and biosphere reserves (i.e. conservation) to tourism is discussed in Chapter 5.  Donor countries have in recent years begun to tie aid extended through agencies like the World Bank to the recipient's environmental and human rights records (Ramphal 1993). Many argue that a country like Canada, with its reputation as 'the Brazil of the North' and its own outstanding aboriginal claims, is ill positioned to place such demands until its own housekeeping is in order. 1 1  - 18 -  The North (i.e. industrialized nations) is accused of hypocrisy. It comprises the bulk of the 20% to 25% of the world's population now consuming 80% of the world's resources (Muqbil 1991; Jones & Wersch 1990) . While "a large proportion of adults in developed countries are more or less aware that 12  growth in population and resource use presents a problem," there remains a strong tendency to deny their part in the problem (Milbrath 1989: 17). Most North Americans and Europeans are reluctant to significantly modify their own consumption habits, including that of travel. They identify issues like rampant population growth and uncontrolled development in the South as more problematic. Assigning responsibility for sustainable development is a contentious issue. The publication of the Brundtland Report signalled increasing recognition that "Present levels of per capita resource consumption underlying the economies of the United States and Western Europe (which is generally what is understood by development) cannot be generalized to all currently living people, much less to future generations" (Daly 1991: 249). Yet most people agree that an improved standard of living in low-income countries rests largely upon increased consumption of resources (Vivian 1992).  The  dilemma would be solved if redistribution of the world's existing resources was politically palatable. North Americans and Europeans would curtail their consumption in order to free resources for use in countries where survival is an issue. This, however, is not the way that the world or human nature work. The North is willing to institute measures such as recycling or tougher pollution legislation, but reducing consumption (i.e. travel) by any significant degree is out of the question.  The South,  meanwhile, is expected to modify its expectations. The North is in essence sending the South a mixed message. On one hand it promotes modernization, integration, and higher consumption through economic growth. On the other, it insists that environmental and social accountability take precedence in development. The hand extended in  For this reason, many leading conservation authorities argue that "Most of the world's looming environmental threats... are by-products of affluence" (Alan Durning, quoted in Reilly 1992:  325).  - 19 -  paternalistic friendship is withdrawn in self-righteous haste as soon as discussion shifts to the North's role in Southern poverty through exploitative industries like tourism. The 'Don't do as I do; just do as I say' mentality of the North is offensive to the South. The zero growth prescription put forward by some environmental groups is particularly offensive. "A freeze in the standard of living and material comfort of people at a high level of affluence is one thing. The suggestion that sometimes accompanies this - that people in developing countries should be content with an idealized state of pastoral bliss - is altogether different and perverse" (Ramphal 1993: 63). As Daly noted: "it is unreasonable to expect the poor to limit their resource consumption until after the rich have limited theirs. This applies not only between rich and poor nations but also between social classes within nations" (Daly 1991: 165).  4.2 Equity  The North-South debate outlined above revolves around the question of equity. It is well known that LICs have marked social stratification. In 1973, Schumacher observed in LICs "the emergence, in an ever more accentuated form, of the 'dual economy', in which there are two different patterns of living as widely separated from each other as two different worlds" (Schumacher 1973: 136). Few want to acknowledge that similar inequalities exist on a global scale, between donor countries and LICs. Yet the global rich-poor gap is now said to be widening as well (Durning 1989 "B"). The increasing gap between rich and poor is of great concern to development planners with experience in the field. These people have seen firsthand in biosphere reserves and other areas set aside for conservation through tourism how inequity drives indiscriminate resource use (Redclift 1992). They have also witnessed the burden that environmental protection poses for the poor (Robinson et al. 1990). Either one of these phenomena on its own can spiral into increasing hardship, creating "ecological refugees' (see Brown 1991). Together they form a vice. The poor - fleeing over-crowded  - 20 -  slums and farmland - migrate to homestead 'frontier' rainforest, only to be expelled in the name of tourism-funded biodiversity.  The Brundtland Report noted that "the existence of the most negative  environmental impacts iFFs closely connected to the incidence of both great wealth and great poverty" (Robinson et al. 1990: 43). This led scholars like Robinson et al. (1990) to stipulate that a sustainable society must qualify as sustainable in both ecological and socio-political terms. The socio-political criteria for sustainability adopted by organizations like the UNEP are designed to increase equity . 13  At the policy level, equity has become a four-letter word.  Many sustainable development  theorists deem equity to be the foundation of a sustainable society (Robinson et al. 1990). Governments subscribing to the sustainable development ideal must therefore give equity lip service. No one, however, is coming forward to volunteer a domestic prescription for the achievement of sustainable development through equity. Equity is desirable so long as the changes it entails (e.g. land reform) unfold in someone else's back yard.  Equity, nonetheless, is now fixed upon the development  agenda. The New Environmental Paradigm ("NEP") holds equity as the foundation of development (see Milbrath 1989). Its proponents contend that the ecological and social costs of a project will be minimized only to the extent that the benefits are equitably distributed amongst the local community (Riegert.1991). The equitable distribution of costs and benefits amongst the local community is fundamental to AT (see Chapter 2). This distribution hinges on culturally sensitive avenues for participation (Rosote et al. 1991). Meaningful participation is a cornerstone of 'full fare' tourism (see Chapters 2, 10).  Equity is defined by Linda Cronin as "full access to economic, social and environmental continuity and opportunity" (Edwards & Banks 1990).  - 21 -  4.3 Power Differentials The notion of equity is controversial because its implementation is a threat to existing power structures. An equitable system in theory extends access to future opportunities and benefits to every social stratum (Edwards & Banks 1990). It attempts to involve community members from all walks of life in pivotal decision-making.  The existing system, in contrast,  "is pictured as a big financial democracy, where people vote for goods and services with dollar bills. [In reality]... it is not a system which encourages a one-person/one-vote balloting system" (Ross & Usher 1986: 131). It has marked power differentials.  Dominant classes exist on a national and international scale.  LICs, a small group of political and economic elite constitute the dominant class.  In  Internationally, this  patchwork of LIC elites is linked by shared political and economic interests to the governments of donor countries. However, consumption levels and democratic election processes in donor countries implicate donor country populations as a whole. T h e alliance between LIC elites and donor countries under the banner of the D S P is a strategic one. These interest groups are "dominant not only because of access to and control of important sectors of economic activity, but because they can exert greater influence in the political institutions as well, including those which promote their ideological 'rationale' to the masses" (Preister 1989: 17). Critics of traditional development policy like Schumacher (1973) thus contend that the development theories propagated by these groups only reinforce existing power structures. Mainstream development ideology fosters a double-tiered dependency: donor nations subjugate LICs; LIC elite,  meanwhile,  subjugate the poor. Only when donor country demands stretch into domestic policy do the LIC elite reassess their faith in mainstream development ideology. Tourism only exacerbates power differentials in a locale if the obstacles to achieving equity are not addressed (see Chapters 8, 10).  Equity, like development, is an abstract concept until given a  human face. The same numbers that mask who those being 'developed' or exploited are also mask  - 22 -  who those in power are. That is why the qualitative reconceptualization of development discussed above is perceived by those in power as threatening, if not radical or subversive. It raises compelling questions: "If we talk of promoting development, what have we in mind - goods or people? If it is people - which particular people? Who are they? Where are they? Why do they need help? If they cannot get on without help, what, precisely, is the help they need? How do we communicate with them? Concern with people raises countless questions like these. Goods, on the other hand, do no raise so many questions. Particularly when econometricians and statisticians deal with them, goods even cease to be anything identifiable, and become GNP, imports, exports, savings, investment, infrastructure, or what not" (Schumacher 1973: 160). In the tourism industry, the only model addressing such questions is that for 'full fare' AT.  V. The Role of Tourism in Development 5.1 Tourism as a Development Tool  Tourism is now both endorsed and opposed as a means of development (Stockly 1984). Many LICs (e.g. Ecuador, Nepal) continue to promote what is essentially mainstream tourism, giving it an ecotourism facelift for marketing purposes. Some like Bhutan approve of strictly 'alternative' tourism developments only. Others - such as those involved in Mundo Maya - believe a mix is possible or necessary. While mainstream tourism is increasingly frowned upon by academics and sustainable development advocates (see Nash 1981; Srisang 1988), tourism itself still has a wide audience. This is especially true in LICs. Countries marginalized in other economic sectors find they can compete in the tourism market. In the alternative tour market some discover that they have an edge owing to the traditional lifestyles and unique or endangered ecosystems still found in their territory. The most common argument in favour of promoting tourism in LICs is the anticipated foreign exchange earnings (Schurmann 1981; Jenkins 1982). Tourism can improve the image of a country,  - 23 -  increasing its overall success in international trade (MacGregor 1980). It is a vital source of foreign exchange in its own right as well. The tourism industry is now the world's largest export earner (Johnston 1990). More and more, in countries like Kenya, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Nepal (Tolba & El-Kholy 1992), it is a leading export earner at the national level. This explains why tourism holds such priority for "nations whose narrow, agricultural-based economies are held hostage to world economic trends and foreign lending institutions" (Kutay 1989 "A": 33). Tourism is viewed by many development planners as a boost for economically depressed regions within LICs (Stockly 1984; Pearce 1989). In areas like the Mayan region, with relatively small 14  and impoverished populations, it is regarded as a substitute for capital goods investment (Zammit 1981). Infrastructure built to service the tourism industry - such as transportation, water, and sanitation and sanitation systems - in theory benefits locals as well (MacGregor 1980) . National parks, an 15  important tourist attraction, are considered particularly useful in strengthening such underdeveloped or lagging regional economies (Britton 1987). There are, nevertheless, many tourism opponents in development circles. J. Bryden, for example, maintains that in places like the Commonwealth Caribbean "a perfectly recognizable 'economic' case can be made against tourism development... without even referring to 'transcendental' or 'social' costs" (quoted in Nash 1981: 465). Srisang (1988: 14) goes so far as to call the supposed  Mundo Maya members have economies of varying strengths; however, the region as a whole is characterized by extreme poverty. This poverty is most evident in predominantly indigenous areas. The Mexican state of Chiapas, which at over 50% (Nash & Sullivan 1992) has the largest concentration of Indians in the nation, is also the poorest and least developed state in Mexico (Bruns 1991). The infant mortality rate among the Maya there is 500 per 1,000 live births (Nash & Sullivan 1992). Mesoamerican countries are at present too strapped by debt payments to undertake domestic public spending. In 1988, Mexico recorded a 70:30 ratio between debt payments and other public spending. These figures prompted Mexico to court private investors "not only for hotels and tourist centres, but also for public works projects such as roads, drainage, and water supplies" (Larmer 1989: 6). Central American countries, much poorer than Mexico, are following suit. See Chapters 5 and 8 for discussion of whether this 'trickle down' actually benefits locals. 15  - 24 -  economic benefits associated with tourism (e.g. trickle down, multiplier effect) "at best manipulations of the facts and in reality big lies". Though concerns about tourism are warranted so too are hopes. As Nash (1981) points out, there are cases where tourism is beneficial to the host community. The appropriateness of tourism must therefore be assessed on a community by community basis.  5.2 Alternative Tourism as a Development Tool  AT, like traditional tourism, is approached as revenue earner by LICs (see OMM 1991). The difference between the two is that AT seeks to achieve the same economic results through lower visitation levels. LICs eyeing the alternative market niche try to identify the combinations of visitors that maximise returns while minimizing impacts (Butler and Waldbrook 1991). Several tourism scholars take issue with the deliberate regional stagnation believed to accompany culturally based AT. Schurman (1981), Richter (1992), and Silver (1992) all discuss this phenomenon. As Richter (1992) notes: "The very underdevelopment that... frustrates [grassroots] economic aspirations is a potential asset in attracting tourism. Thus we have a paradox: nations which are veritable hellholes for most of their citizens are sold as 'unspoiled paradises' to outsiders" (Richter 1992: 35). Tour companies promote the 'primitive' and 'timeless' facets of indigenous culture (Silver 1992). Tourists, meanwhile, lament the 'spoiling' of the host communities by its contact with the outside world and ensuing modernization (Guldin 1989). This showcasing of 'pristine splendor' denies locals their dignity (Hooper 1992); it is common, nevertheless, in demand-side AT. Tourists express dismay upon seeing Mayan market vendors sporting Western clothing (see Morris 1988: 153). Such disillusionment led Club Med to cancel excursions to the Lacandon village of A/aha. Its clients lost interest in this Mayan community once pickup trucks and a small supermarket cropped up there (Perera 1988).  - 25 -  Proponents of true or supply-side AT present a very different picture. They argue that its decentralized nature  brings more balanced regional development than traditional  tourism.  Decentralizing prevents the 'spoiling' that occurs in 'mono-destinations' (Lillywhite 1989). It also 16  increases regional equity. Visitors purchase from a wide variety of local vendors and establishments instead of a few large, absentee-owned franchise resorts and hotels (Rosote et al. 1991).  This  theoretically disperses income more widely through the host region or country (Valentine 1990) . 17  There are fewer intermediaries shaving off a portion of the profits. AT does not try to transplant modernization like traditional tourism.  It recognizes that  "Agriculture is, and is likely to remain, the major livelihood of villagers" (Roughan 1990: 443). The goal, accordingly, is to supplement rather than replace customary lifestyles (Williams 1992). The value of this approach is evident in rural areas, where "It provide[s] a secondary income for the local populations and enables them to stay on their farms" (Moulin 1980: 203). Under these circumstances the host population directly benefits from tourism. Communities participate in their own development instead of being further marginalized as spectators. Many indigenous groups have successfully put AT theory into practice (see Chapter 9).  Not all tourism planners subscribe to this view. Hudman (1978) argues that decentralization simply extends the negative impacts associated with the tourism industry to a wider area. He advocates that these impacts be confined through designated tourist development centres. lo  Ecuador implemented the notion of designated tourism centres without much success. It limited visitation to the Galapagos to 42 approved sites (Kutay 1989 "A"). In the absence of visitor quotas, designating visitation sites has achieved nothing. The Galapagos have experienced vast ecological destruction. Such zoning can be detrimental from a social standpoint as well. In Brazil, the policy of indirect tourism prevalent in the 1960s - whereby native handicrafts were sold at tourist sites without any contact between producer and consumer proved very misleading (see Aspelin 1982). Avery low percentage of the profits ever reached the producers. So while the government treasury benefitted from the romananticization of indigenous culture, the indigenous peoples themselves lived in "poverty and desperation, ill-health and exploitation" (Aspelin 1982: 20). 17  Buying locally also nets a larger profit-share for the host region or country. Flying Garuda Indonesia to Bali  rather than United Airlines, for instance, earns Bali over $1,000 (Lindberg 1993).  - 26 -  Conclusion  The notion of 'alternative' tourism ("AT") grew from disillusionment within LICs with regular tourism.  Regular tourism, a product of traditional development planning and the DSP, was not  delivering the promised 'trickle down'. Host communities usually encountered exploitation instead of an improvement in their standard of living. In response to this trend, grassroots organizations began to devise mechanisms for the 'active capture' of tourism benefits.  These sprung from an entirely different world view, now commonly  referred to as the NEP. The new body of theory, of which AT is a component, inverts longstanding planning precepts. It disposes of the traditional 'top down' planning hierarchy, presenting 'bottom up' solutions instead. In a tourism context, this inversion flips the horizontal planning axis as well [see Figure 3]. 'Bottom up' connotes a supply-side (i.e. community based) as opposed to demand-side (i.e. market driven) approach to tourism development.  - 27 -  FIGURE 3:  ALTERNATIVE TOURISM AS AN INVERSION OF TRADITIONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING 'Top Down' Development Planning  t Demand-Side Traditions  Supply-Side Alternatives  "Bottom Up' Innovations  - 28 -  Chapter 2: ALTERNATIVE TOURISM THEORY & PRACTICE  Introduction  This chapter presents the theory of alternative tourism ("AT") and defines 'full fare' AT. Familiarity with these concepts is required to assess whether Mundo Maya is unfolding in a manner consistent with program rhetoric. It is also the basis for understanding how the theory-practice gap usually plaguing such AT programs can be closed.  I. The History of Alternative Tourism 1.1 Green Consumerism  For decades tourism has been viewed by low-income countries "as a relatively easy way to improve standard of living" (Howell and Uysal 1987: 62). This enthusiasm has been supplanted in recent years by an air of caution. Many countries now regard traditional tourism as unsustainable (Rosote et al. 1990) owing to mounting empirical evidence in high traffic tourist destinations like Nepal. Increasingly, governments recognize that tourism can be 'self destructive' if not carefully planned (Go 1989). Growing  environmental  consciousness in  tourism  circles  reflects  a  wider  trend.  Environmentalism, as a general idea, now appeals "to such otherwise opposite political constituencies as American conservatives... and German Greens" (Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer 1990: 10). Governments in Mesoamerica and around the world are incorporating environmental rhetoric into their platforms, furthering tourism goals through politically correct public relations campaigns.  'Sustainable  development' has become the buzzword of the 1990s (Redclift 1992) . 18  In Costa Rica, several candidates for the 1990 presidential election had 'sustainable development' platforms (Bellm 1989).  - 29 -  'Sustainable development' is now accorded great weight in policy arenas. The publication of the Brundtland Report in 1987 alerted governments to a very real environmental crisis. Agencies like the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank began changing the direction of their policies, financing more conservation-oriented projects (Fonseca 1989). People at all levels of the development system began "promoting tourism as the sustainable industry of choice" (Johnston 1990). Changes at the policy level have mirrored those in society aMarge. In North America and Europe, environmental concerns are shaping people's decisions to an unprecedented degree . 19  According to Conservation International (1992), 83% of American consumers have changed their shopping and living habits to protect the environment (Conservation International 1992 "A"). This greening of social values, in combination with "rising concerns for health and fitness, and increasing standards of education [has]...kindled an escalating demand for ecotourism and other types of special travel to unusual destinations." (Williams 1991: 84). Analysts predict that AT will increase as consumers are challenged "to change what, how and from whom they purchase in order to accommodate environmental considerations" (Ricciardi 1992: 22).  1.2 Emergence of Alternative Tourism AT is a complex phenomenon that involves North American and European tourists venturing off to explore remote, foreign, and pristine areas, often in LICs (Johnston 1990; Cohen 1989). It is by no means a recent invention. For years, tourists have built their travel plans around visits to African game parks and other exotic attractions (Southworth 1989). AT, however, has grown from being an isolated pursuit into an industry in its own right. In 1980, Read predicted that special interest travel would dominate the tourism industry over the next  ''According to a recent New York Times poll, approximately 75% of adult Americans consider themselves 'environmentalists'; this figure rises to 89% among college-educated, upper-income Americans (Combrink 1991; Boeger 1991).  - 30 -  decade.  AT, an amalgamation of many forms of special interest travel, has done just that . 20  Established travel companies developed alternative tour lines to supplement their usual fare, and several companies specializing in alternative travel emerged . 21  The resounding interest in AT has spawned a variety of initiatives and programs. In 1990, Costa Rica's Latin American University of Science and Technology launched the world's first master's degree in ecotourism (Hansen 1990; Fennell & Eagles 1990). Two years later the University of San Francisco in Ecuador initiated another ecotourism program (Munoz [accent] 1992). Seminars and conferences on different facets of ecotourism are now available worldwide. Consultants specializing in ecotourism have emerged, as have newsletters and journals (Yee 1992). People of all persuasions have now discovered the promise of AT. Ecotourism, a specialized segment of the alternative tour market, is particularly popular. Elizabeth Boo, head of the World Wildlife Fund's ecotourism program, says that her audience is now "more than conservation groups and tourism trade groups. I get calls from investors - individuals, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the World Bank, U.S. AID" (Norris 1992: 32). As Norris observes, "The diversity of interested parties helps to explain ecotourism's promise and some of its pitfalls" (Norris 1992: 32). Each party has manipulated the concept to suit its own interests. The applications range from strict profiteering to conservation and community development. Obviously, not all of these constitute 'full fare' tourism.  l n 1990 industry specialists at the Stanford Research Institute were predicting 10-15% annual growth for culture and adventure travel and 20-25% annual growth for nature travel 1990-1995, well above the 8% annual growth predicted for tourism at large (Boeger 1991; Natureplace 1991; see also Passoff 1991). Claude Larreur, a tourism development specialist for the Organization of American States, issued a comparable forecast (Smith 1990/91). In 1990 growth in the ecotour sector actually exceeded expectations, hitting 30% (King 1991; Natureplace 1991). 2U  21  The number of tour operators offering nature or culture-based tourism packages grew by 46% in 1988 (Combrink 1990) and between 24.6% and 30.8% in 1992 (see Blum 1991; Weiner 1991; Yee 1992).  - 31 -  II. Evolution of the Alternative Tourism Concept 2.1 The Ambiguity of "Alternative" Tourism  In 1989 the World Tourism Organization hosted a five-day conference on AT. This conference marked the beginning of an intense debate over what constitutes AT. The research, development and promotion of AT have been largely uncoordinated; as a result, no clear concept of the term 'alternative' tourism has been established (WTO Secretariat 1989). AT, like sustainable development, "can mean almost anything to anyone" (Butler 1990: 40). AT "is a generic term encompassing a range of tourism strategies" (Weaver 1991: 415). Academics often describe it as 'appropriate' (Richter 1987), 'low impact' (Lillywhite 1989) 'responsible' or 'ethical' (Kutay 1989 "A") tourism. In the marketplace, labels like 'academic,' 'adventure,' 'eco,' 'nature,' 'small scale,' 'archeo,' 'ethnic,' and 'soft path' (Johnston 1990) are found. While each of the names associated with AT carries a different theoretical and/or practical emphasis, they are often used interchangeably. The average consumer does not distinguish between the various terms. Even amongst tourism professionals there is considerable transgression. AT is synonymous with ecotourism, and so on . 22  The people differentiating between the different labels tend to be those involved in AT from either an academic, community development, or conservation point of view. Very few players in the travel market itself apply any of the labels as more than a buzzword. Descriptions of the more commonly applied AT terms are set out below in this chapter.  In the minds of most consumers, the various labels associated with AT signify a 'green' travel product. Many academics and tourism professionals make a different connection. They relate practice to theory, and can differentiate between pseudo and true AT. To them, "Call it alternative, responsible, or sustainable the desired components are now familiar. The traveller is preferred to the tourist, the individual to the group, specialist operators rather than large firms, indigenous accommodation to multinational hotel chains, small not large..." (Wheeller 1992: 104).  - 32 -  2.2 Alternative Tourism As A Response to Mass Tourism AT is generally viewed in juxtaposition to mass tourism (Cazes 1989; Cohen 1989 "A"). There is "universal condemnation in the academic world for the mass tourist" (Butler 1989: 57). AT proponents thus tend to focus on the undifferentiated evils of mass tourism (Richter 1987), forgetting that "mass tourism does not always have to be unplanned and... AT is not always planned" (Jarviluoma 1992: 118). The dichotomy commonly drawn between alternative and mass tourism oversimplifies how the two interact. In reality, "mass tourism... is not so much being displaced as supplemented by [AT]" (Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer 1990: 9). As evident in Mexico, 'sun, sand, and sex' packages still retain a huge market share (SECTUR 1990). Many tourists cross back and forth between alternative and mass tourism . 23  AT is not a replacement for mass tourism (Jarviluoma 1992). Many argue that "small numbers of [alternative] tourists, many of whom are affluent, would produce equal financial return with far less... disruption of the human and physical environment" (Valentine 1990: 58). However, it is unrealistic to expect mass tourism to cease in favour of purely elitist AT, as "the small-scale nature of [true AT]  The symbiosis between alternative and mass tourism has enabled companies at either end of the tourism spectrum to exploit the other side. Mainstream companies like American Express have re-shaped their travel products to capture AT dabblers, offering an array of "two-or-more night packages that can be mixed and matched in customized independent vacations covering both civilized and adventurous destinations" (Travel Weekly 07/22/91: 4). AT companies, meanwhile, have enticed typically mainstream tourists with luxury ecotours. As a result, "More and more people, who otherwise would never have taken an adventure trip, take it because we provide a sense of safety, security, and comfort (Kutay 1989 "B": 5). This symbiosis is well illustrated in MUNDO MAYA. Club Med and Camino Real are spearheading the development of MUNDO MAYA destinations. In 1991, Club Med already had archaeological villas in Chichen Itza.Coba, Uxmal, and Cholula; two more villas were scheduled to be built in Palenque and San Cristobal de las Casas, and a seventy-room property had just opened in Tikal (Sullivan 09/09/1991; Sullivan 09/30/1991). Camino Real, meanwhile, had constructed new properties in Tikal and at Devil Caye, and was planning to open a second property in Guatemala City in the spring of 1993 (Gardner 1991; Sullivan 09/09/1991). Many, like the Camino Real property at Tikal, consist of 'jungle style' bungalows with thatched roofs for the illusion of 'roughing it'.  - 33 -  projects and the selected character of its public precludes [AT] from being a realistic alternative to conventional mass tourism" (Cohen 1989 "A": 16). Alternative tourists, especially those who are 'socially conscious,' (Lindsay 1991), occupy a small and specialized segment of the travel market (Fennell & Smale 1992). Many, furthermore, are far from being millionaires. 'Rucksack' or 'drifter' tourists constitute a significant portion of alternative travel (see Cohen 1989 "A"; Graburn 1989). These youth may possess trust funds, inheritances, or lucrative seasonal employment (Smith 1990 "B"); however, their extended travel is usually facilitated by frugality. AT is more a supplement to mass tourism. It constitutes a model for specialized, culturally and/or ecologically based community tourism (Harron & Weiler 1992) wherein the enclave concept is inverted. LIC communities dictate who sets foot upon their soil and set conditions for entry (Gonsalves 1987). Academics' pre-occupation with defining AT stems from the rampant misuse of the buzzwords associated with it. Much of the tourism unfolding under the AT banner is actually cleverly marketed mainstream tourism. Such tourism is but a prelude to mass visitation (Weaver 1991). Hence the fervent effort by the academic world to clarify what constitutes AT as opposed to what simply mimics its surface attributes (see Cazes 1989).  2.3 Alternative Tourism A s A Subversion of the DSP  Individuals and corporations benefitting commercially from AT tend to view it as merely a component of the global tourism industry. To these people AT represents a marketing opportunity. This was evident at the Second International Symposium on Ecotourism in 1990, where the majority of participants were American ecotour companies approaching ecotourism from a strictly business perspective (Passoff 1991; Faust 1993).  - 34 -  Academics and sustainable development advocates take the opposite tangent. They consider AT to be a separate concept arising out of the recent social movement (Nash & Butler 1990). Cazes (1989), for instance, argues that AT subverts the values, process, and form of prevailing models. Cohen (1989) puts forth this same argument. Proponents of the NEP regard AT as a true alternative not just to mainstream tourism, but to the models and paradigm behind mainstream tourism. The conceptualization of AT under the NEP, though radical in the eyes of mainstream development planners, is now enjoying support due to the acceptance in principle of sustainable development. AT is the tourism industry's official 'sustainable development' initiative. As such, it is treated with a predictable degree of fickleness. Some accord the ideals associated with AT lip service, while others pursue them in earnest [see Figure 4]. Passoff argues that "In its ideal form, ecotourism is an activity, philosophy and a development and environmental policy all at the same time" (Passoff 1991: 28).  Implementation of true AT,  nonetheless, is sporadic. Tourism activities claiming this new ideological foundation (see Srisang 1991) have as many manifestations as they do names.  111. Defining Alternative Tourism 3.1 The Theory of Alternative Tourism  AT might be described as a product of the NEP. It draws on innovations and experience in other development sectors to offer a concrete path toward sustainable development through tourism. 24  Kutay (1989 "B") refers to it as appropriate technology for the tourism sector.  In other sectors of international development, there is a rich history of participatory planning. There is, for example, extensive literature on the water and health sectors' experience with participatory planning (see Feacham et al. 1978, Kia 1984, Whyte 1986, and WHO 1981). A quick review of this literature reveals why participation is important and under what circumstances it succeeds. AT theorists have obviously drawn on experience in these sectors to formulate a practical vision for sustainable tourism.  - 35 -  The goal of AT is to "prevent environmental and cultural degradation and, most of all, exploitation and dehumanization of the local population" (Cohen 1989 "A": 130). This is accomplished through culturally sensitive planning and the institution of equitable profit-sharing mechanisms (Lillywhite and Lillywhite 1991).  - 36 -  FIGURE 4:  o o z o m D  "0  m  73  — 1N X> m  o  "0 9o O Z m  TJ  O O 73 CD 2 2 ai33 TQ. 3 3J. »<" 5-3 CD 3 3  C O  CD O  3 3  13 CD  to po O CO  ro  g- ro C-D• o  08tnCQ.D •o  CD  " 5  2 to  - 37 -  Gonsalves (1987) contends that the most important facet of AT is its new conceptualization of social relationships. AT is based on the theoretical notions of local self-determination and partnership (Pearce 1989; Cohen 1989 "A"; Johnston 1990). This assumes "prior consultation of all participants concerned" (WTO Secretariat 1989: 4) and a commitment to meaningful participatory planning. By this definition "the emerging tourism would only deserve the qualification of 'alternative' if it was actually stimulated, chosen, defined and managed by the 'local system'" (Cazes 1989: 123). In AT the full range of social and ecological impacts is considered throughout the planning process (WTO Secretariat 1990). To establish such a comprehensive and iterative planning process, the notion of local self-determination must be respected. It is through the participation of locals that planners can uncover the values ignored during standard cost-benefit analysis to ensure future social and ecological integrity.  3.2 Definition of Full Fare' Alternative Tourism  According to Williams (1991), 'full fare' tourism exists when travellers pay the true cost of production for their tourism experience. This necessitates the assessment and allocation of funds for the maintenance of cultural and ecological integrity (Williams 1991). Exploitative tourism is not full fare tourism.  'Exploit,' according to the Merriam-Webster  dictionary, means 'to turn to economic account' or 'use unfairly for one's own advantage'. Any tourism program that turns natural or cultural resources to economic account without generating meaningful 'trickle down' or grassroots opportunity is exploitative. This-criterion extends to community-run tourism programs. Exploitation by local elite is no less damaging than exploitation by outsiders. Equity is thus central to full fare tourism. One must question not only if tourism pays its own way (see Williams 1991), but if it is socially as well as ecologically sustainable. Sustainable tourism, defined in keeping with UNEP criteria, is tourism that promotes fair and equitable distribution of benefits  - 38 -  and costs (Tolba & El-Kholy 1992).  Only through the equitable distribution of benefits can the  ecological and social costs associated with tourism be minimized (Riegert 1991). I have chosen to define 'full fare' tourism principally by social criteria. It is in the social arena that AT most notably stands apart from traditional models for community development (Gonsalves 1987).  Participatory development strategies fostering equity cannot exist where human rights are  absent, as community organizing is the antithesis to a repressively autocratic environment.  This  relationship between community participation and human rights - not to mention human rights and sustainability (discussed in Chapter 10) - is probably the hottest topic on the development agenda today. Suggesting such a connection does not make one popular. Too many people (e.g. Northern consumers and corporations, LIC elite) prosper or otherwise benefit from institutionalized inequity. It is consequently an act of treason to question the status quo now launching this planet toward environmental disaster. No one benefitting from the DSP wants to challenge the privilege to consume (i.e. travel), because under the prevailing world view that privilege is assumed by those in power to be a right (Hollingsworth 1994). The NEP forwards a very different conceptualization of human rights. That is why scholars like Capra (1988) and Daly & Cobb (1989) speak of a paradigm shift. Addressing and resolving the human rights issues underpinning sustainability and the practice of 'full fare' AT requires a complete shift in social values. Hence my hypothesis that mainstream tourism is a product of the DSP, while AT evolved from the NEP. In my opinion, it would be misleading at this point to present an ecologically-based definition of 'full fare' AT. There is no acceptance under the DSP of the existence of ecological thresholds insurmountable by human ingenuity (Berman 1988; Capra 1988).  The ecological values gaining  precedence today, furthermore, have no expression in traditional economic terms (Rees 1990). No one in the political mainstream wants to recognize that the resilience of the world economy - and of human communities - depends on that of the biosphere (see Brown 1990).  - 39 -  The paradigm shift foreseen by the likes of Capra (1988) and Daly & Cobb (1989) is in process. There are therefore no tried and true models for representing intangibles (e.g. the value of a disappearing species or lifestyle) in the decision-making process (see Johnston 1991). The tidy costbenefit analysis inherent to standard economics has no parallel if the value of indigenous knowledge and subsistence strategies or ecological uncertainties such as thresholds are to be considered. It would thus be quite ambitious to set out to concoct a set of ecological criteria for 'full fare' AT.  The task of assigning values to the disappearing lifestyles and ecosystems so popular with  alternative tourists has yet to be resolved by the great minds of our time. So any model proposing values for such attributes would likely undervalue them. Misuse of an inaccurate model in decisionmaking could be disastrous. From an ecological perspective, 'full fare' AT is likely an illusion. If the true ecological costs of an ecotour were somehow quantified and totalled it would quickly become apparent that the type of travel that has become the norm and been claimed as a right in industrialized countries this century is highly unsustainable (Hollingsworth 1994). A single airplane ticket to Costa Rica would probably cost upward of $50,000 after the by-products of airplane construction, the long-term costs of engine pollution, and so on were factored into the price (Hollingsworth 1994). Notwithstanding, there are ethical grounds for assessing whether a given AT experience is 'full fare' by social criteria. The same power structure that deprives locals of the economic benefits of tourism in LICs tends to hand them the ecological headaches associated with it (Johnston 1991). At the same time, the majority of locals - disempowered by poverty - are often elbowed out of the conservation argument accompanying AT theory (Faust 1993). So the negative ecological impacts associated with tourism might more aptly be described as a form of social impact. A good benchmark criterion for 'full fare' tourism is host satisfaction [see Figure 7]. If locals perceive themselves or their homeland as being exploited, then the tourism in question is not 'full fare.'  - 40 -  IV. The Different Shades of 'Alternative' Tourism  The theory of AT is put into practice in the field under a variety of banners.  The most  commonly used terms - adventure tourism, ecotourism, and low impact tourism - all have their own distinguishing characteristics which are set out below [see Figure 5]. Not all shades of AT qualify as 'full fare' tourism [see Figure 6].  4.1 Adventure Tourism  Adventure tourism often incorporates some element of nature and/or culture seeking, but may also be a straight 'action' trip involving a physical activity such as kayaking. Adherence to 'full fare' principles is usually low in adventure tourism. As Harrison (1990: 9) stipulates that "Trekkers to Mount Everest who throw their garbage around and use up the local firewood are adventure travellers; people who go to Mount Everest to clean up after such adventure travellers are ecotourists."  Several scholars and ecotour operators agree with Harrison. Lindsay  (1991), for instance, calls ecotourism a socially conscious branch of adventure tourism. An operator responding to the 1992 PATA Intelligence Centre survey echoed this view: "We believe an 'ecotour' needs to have a direct benefit to the culture or environment or it should be classified 'Adventure travel'" (Yee 1992: 16).  4.2 Ecotourism  Ecotourism is a "very specific subsegment of AT" (Williams 1991: 83). Boo (1990) equates ecotourism with nature tourism. Other AT analysts, however, set ecotourism apart from conventional  - 41 -  nature-based tourism. According to Natureplace (1991), nature tourism involves exponential growth . Ecotourism, in contrast, fosters sustainable economic development (Kutay 1989 "B"). Ecotourism, though confused with nature tourism, often has a strong cultural component. In locales sought out primarily for their natural beauty, there are usually local peoples. Sometimes there are remnants of past civilizations as well. Pasariello (1983) notes this mix of attractions, drawing a link between cultural/ethnic and nature tourism. Blum (1991) concurs, noting that "most of those interested in ecotourism are also interested in the cultural aspects of tourism" (Blum 1991: 16).  From an  ecosystems perspective, it is difficult to separate the two. For this reason, I considers cultural and ethnic tourists to be a type of ecotourist. Ecotourism based on or supplemented by cultural/ethnic tourism has as many different shades as nature-based ecotourism. Many scholars argue that ethnic tourism is 'greener' than cultural tourism. Harron and Weiler (1992) take this standpoint; in their eyes, ethnic tourism presents an opportunity for immersion and firsthand learning unavailable to the more detached cultural tourist.  In both cases,  however, the potential good or harm brought by the tourist presence rests on the tour operator's sense of principle. Many are misled by its name to believe that ecotourism is greenest form of travel. Due to the lack of industry standards, however, the practice of ecotourism is extremely varied. Some operators abide by AT principles while others merely capitalize on the marketing opportunity ecotourism represents. Ecotourism, as such, includes everything from the truly alternative tour to carefully masked mainstream tours (Fennell and Eagles 1990). In defining ecotourism, scholars tend to differentiate between the travel market point of view and the conservationist point of view. To the bulk of the travel market, ecotourism is simply "an  An example of exponential growth in visitation through nature tourism would be the African game parks. Visitation levels in most safari areas have been dictated solely by demand.  - 42 -  opportunity for growth and diversification in an everchanging, overly competitive and always demanding tourist market" (Bezaury-Creel 1991: 109). Mainstream ecotour companies regard ecotourism as a mix of green consumerism and recreation (Yee 1992). They conjure up images of the great outdoors (Ashton 1991) and promise unparalleled nature-based activities (see Ingram & Durst 1989), striking a chord with slogans like 'Take nothing but pictures; leave nothing but footprints'  26  (O'Reilly 1992).  Consumers concerned over disappearing cultures, lifestyles, and ecosystems take the bait (Johnston 1990). They "travel to relatively undisturbed or uncontaminated natural areas with the specific objective of studying, admiring and enjoying the scenery and its wild plants and animals, as well as existing cultural manifestations (both past and present) found in these areas..." (Hector Ceballos-Lascurain, writing with regard to the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve, quoted in Williams 1991: 83). This has led scholars like Blum (1991) to caution that ecotourism is little more than ' a trendy kind of mass tourism.' At the other end of the spectrum lie the conservation NGOs (non-governmental organizations) and handful of ecotour companies that pursue ecotourism as a conservation tool. These groups, though guided by a sense of altruism, are still profit-minded. As Ryel (1991) notes, ecotourism exists to make a profit; it uses economic incentives to promote conservation (Kutay  1989 "B"). What  distinguishes these groups from their mainstream counterparts is how they conduct themselves in the field and what they do with their profits once home. Some, like Journeys International and Wildland Adventures (See Appendix 1), earmark a percentage of their profits for sustainable development in the host community.  Projects supported by such companies may be 'bottom-up' (see Chapter 9) and  hence 'full fare.' Corporate and organization ethics, nonetheless, cannot be assumed. Conservation NGOs usually sub-contract their trips to an unaffiliated tour operator (Kutay 1991). Trip proceeds, moreover,  The danger of this 'footprints' slogan is illustrated well in Mundo Maya. In Mexico, thousand-year-old pyramids have been worn down within a few decades by tourists' feet (Fineman 1990).  - 43 -  may not go directly to conservation. The Smithsonian Institution, for instance, allocates trip profits to conservation only if expressly stipulated (Combrink 1990). In ecotourism, the tour operator calls the shots. It decides where to go, who to take, and what to do upon arrival. If its in-house ethic embodies the ideals of AT, the product may appear to be 'full fare'. But there are no guarantees. The ecotour industry usually puts profit before charity. There is no authority dictating if or how any charity must follow. Ecotourism, like adventure tourism, is probably best categorized as a product of the DSP. It functions on the premise of 'trickle down'. Corporate coffers and goals must be filled before host community needs are addressed. This holds true whether that corporation is a business or an NGO.  4.3 Low Impact or Supply Side Tourism  True AT is 'supply side' and 'bottom up'. Malcolm and Linda Lillywhite of Domestic Technology International, a company specializing in the implementation of AT, coined the term 'low impact' tourism ("LIT") for such initiatives. They contrast LIT "to ecotourism (a variety of traditional tourism) which is seen as demand driven" (Lillywhite and Lillywhite 1991: 90). LIT is the theoretical antithesis to ecotourism. Passoff (1991) characterizes supply side tourism as being responsive to the needs of the host country or region.  The Lillywhites (1991) go a step  further, taking the concept to a community level. They regard LIT as that which is regulated and controlled by the destination community. LIT seeks qualitative rather than quantitative improvements. Ideas are deemed appropriate or inappropriate in relation to community history. Pricing, for instance, would depend on local value structures. This approach brings tangible improvements in individual and household welfare with minimal disruption of communal life. As Lillywhite noted: "We've chosen low-impact tourism because we're talking about not only the obvious low impact on the recipient communities and culture, but also  - 44 -  with a very small impact on the beneficiary side... So it's low impact all over. It's much easier to deal with programs that satisfy people in development strategies if expectations are modest or low" (Lillywhite 1989: 8). LIT is in every sense a concrete manifestation of the NEP. In LIT the theory of AT is put into practice. The goal is not to induce unrestricted growth, but to refine a model for sustainable community development based on participation.  Local needs are assessed in a quality of life context.  Equity  considerations weigh heavily in the ensuing list of priorities.  Conclusion  AT is in essence still on probation. Criticism aimed at mainstream adventure and ecotourism operations has dampened the early enthusiasm for AT. Proponents of AT are now having to specify the conditions under which true AT can exist. Implementing true AT is a challenge. The principles and goals central to AT theory counter long-standing assumptions about how 'development' should proceed. Old attitudes and prejudices about indigenous knowledge and skills linger in the development community. These, coupled with oldfashioned greed in the industry and society at large, have distorted the practice of AT in the field. Opportunities for "full fare' AT have been largely unexplored (Williams 1991).  There is  extensive documentation of tourism that is ecologically and socially destructive. But "Few models exist that demonstrate how ecotourism actually advances conservation and sustainable development efforts" (Boo 1992: x). There is only a handful of properly documented "success stories' to guide future design (Valentine 1990).  - 45 -  In the field, AT is still in the testing stage. Communities develop and implement prototypes for full fare AT, then evaluate and modify them . The model for LIT grew from this pilot-project approach. 27  As the Lillywhites (1992: 2) point out, "LIT represents a potential technical innovation rather than an established technique". It is by no means a set or universal prescription. The translation of theory into practice is still being refined. AT specialists are helping indigenous communities all over the world define and implement their own internally funded and managed AT model (Aussie-Stone 1992). "The principal means of promotion of this type of tourism are various small scale projects in developing countries, established with local consultation and participation; they typically bring small groups of visitors to a locality where they are given the opportunity for direct interaction with the locals as equals, and for a comprehension of their 'real' life and problems, unadulterated by embellishments" (Cohen 1989 "A": 16). There is "no example (of significant size)...which fully meets the requirements of the 'alternative model'" (Cazes 1989: 125). The success stories are all small-scale, often in a single village or network of villages (see Passoff 1991). As Norris observes, "the very best are the ones with their roots in a local community's own plans" (Norris 1992; 34).  Chapter 9 discusses the pilot projects now receiving  international attention.  At the Celestun, Rio Lagartos, and Sian Ka'an biosphere reserves on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, a team of Mexican and American professionals from academic, government, and conservation circles have been working together since 1989 to devise appropriate strategies for community-based AT (Rosote et al. 1990). Pilot projects are now underway.  - 46 -  FIGURE 5:  o CD O  5 c co'  -•5  m  1  CO  _  9_ c o cr  2 *  — D_  o. CO  <  CD  CO CO  CO  H o C/>  c H  7J  c/> >m  > <  >  c  7}  co c  3  co o  ST  o o" 3  CO  CD  CD CD Q.  D  m  2 c/> m  0 5'ro ^ § O c " W O (Q  > o  gl" < CD O CO W O ' * CQ  o" CO  CO  m  cB  o  o  O  E?  —1  CD  < CD  CO  2  5  D CD "0  o 0) m 73  mO O o c 0) o "0  H  - 47 -  FIGURE 6:  THE ALTERNATIVE TOURISM SUSTAINABILITY SCALE  DSP  Adventure Tourism  <  Exploitive  NEP  Low Impact or Supply Side Tourism  Ecotourism  Tourism  - •  Full Fare  Tourism  - 48 -  Chapter 3: THE EARLY MANIFESTATIONS OF ALTERNATIVE TOURISM IN MESOAMERICA  Introduction  This chapter introduces the practice of alternative tourism ("AT") in the case study region, paying special attention to the early manifestation of Mundo Maya known as La Ruta Maya. The discussion sets the context for understanding Mundo Maya as a regional development program.  I. Economic Diversification Through Alternative Tourism 1.1 Problems Facing the Mayan Region  Mesoamerican countries began to contemplate AT as a development tool when traditional approaches failed to produce sufficient results (i.e. trickle down).  Regional planners hoped that  diversifying the tourism product through AT would kick start the economy, promoting conservation and sustainable community development at the same time. In the past decade, the Mayan region has experienced escalating poverty (LRMCF 1993). Fluctuating oil prices 1973-86 hit Mexico and Central America alike . By the mid 1980s the entire 28  region had been hit by a series of drops in commodity prices (Heiber 1986). Mesoamerica is now  0 i l prices quadrupled during the first oil crisis in 1973, and doubled again with the second oil crisis in 1979 (Frieden & Lake 1987). Both oil crises were accompanied by a recession in donor countries, which brought declining terms of trade for LICs; commodity prices plunged while interest rates rose (Spero 1985). Mexico, an oil producer, countered the initial drop in commodity earnings by increasing its petroleum output. Oil went from comprising less <5% of Mexico's total exports in 1974 to nearly 45% in 1979 and a full 75% in 1982 (Spero 1985; Frieden & Lake 1987). However, when oil prices fell in 1982 (Spero 1985) and again in 1986 (Heiber 1986), Mexico encountered severe balance of payments problems like its Central American neighbours. This was compounded by another drop in commodity prices in 1986 (Toriello 1992 "B"). 28  - 49 -  facing its worst economic crisis of the century (Waters 1988). Regional economies are characterized by debt, adjustment, and austerity (Reilly 1992) . 29  The crash in world commodity prices and resulting inflation has been devastating for the region's poor (Weinberg 1991 "A"). Farmers at the  El Triunfo  Biosphere Reserve in Jaltenango, Mexico  face "the difficulty of scraping out a living when the price of fertilizer is rising by one-fourth at the same time coffee prices drop by half (Darling 1992: H5). Inflation has driven up the prices of staples like maize and beans (Kintz 1990) to the point that many poor families now consider these products 'rich people's food' (Gruson 1990). Increasing poverty in the region has become a pressing concern. Poverty, as noted by the Brundtland Commission, "is a major cause and effect of environmental problems" (WCED 1987: 3, 28). Families are forced to over-exploit their resource base or clear lands set aside for conservation in order to survive (Reilly 1992).  The resulting destruction unleashes more of the same. Governments,  consequently, are beginning to view conservation problems as socio-economic rather than scientific (Toriello 1992 "A"). Mesoamerican governments are painfully aware of this link between poverty and environmental degradation (OMM 1992 "A") and the attendant unrest. The region has historically had the most skewed land distribution in Latin America (Wilson 1991). In Guatemala, 2% of landowners own 70% of the arable land (Deverell 1990). High inflation has exacerbated the twin problems of landlessness  T h e oil crises of 1973 and 1979 led to the debt crisis of 1982. After the first oil crisis, LICs borrowed heavily to maintain economic growth and serviced this debt through export earnings. The second oil crisis and attendant rise in interest rates made further deficit financing impossible. Between 1978 and 1981 the debt service of LICs had increased by over 70% and several LICs were deemed unstable by creditors. Mexico, confident about newfound oil deposits, continued its ambitious growth strategies. This resulted in a highly inflationary economy; when oil prices fell in 1982 Mexico could not service its $80 billion foreign debt (Spero 1985; see Blake & Walters 1987: 139-150 and Frieden & Lake: 1987: 298-336 for further discussion). 2y  - 50 -  and 'starvation' wages  (Weinberg 1991 "A"). The Maya suffer chronic malnutrition and hence  vulnerability to disease (Riding 1986; Ross 1988 "B"). Regional poverty is now more than ever a threat to stability and the status quo (Gruson 1990). Regional governments are searching in earnest for a solution to poverty that will leave existing power structures intact. Mexico's long-standing effort to foster regional development through subsidized henequen production failed . The region as a whole has paid on international money markets and 31  through a decline in foreign aid (see Ramphal 1993) for the notoriety gained through military intimidation of the rural poor . A new strategy for regional economic development and stability is 32  required. It is against this backdrop that regional governments turned to tourism. Tourism is a promising tool for economic development among those LICs or regions of LICs that lack a viable export sector  Mesoamerican governments' intransigency regarding land reform is grounded in a centuries old policy facilitating cash crop production by large family and/or corporate estates. The deliberate concentration of land among the elite forces the Maya to serve as a cheap labour force on cotton, coffee, and cacao plantations (Lack 1990; Berger 1991), earning the equivalent of $1 USD/day (Riding 1986: 306). Only in Belize is the situation different: "Wage rates for unskilled agricultural work are at least five times higher [in Belize] than in Guatemala... The difference in the degree of exploitation is mainly due to the abundance of land" (Wilk 1991: 158). JU  31 After the War of the Castes in 1847, the Mexican government promoted henequen production on the Yucatan Peninsula as a means to quell unrest among the Maya. When the henequen market collapsed with the introduction of synthetics after World War Two, haciendas closed and several Maya were out of work. The government responded with a massive subsidy program, administered through regional ejidos. By 1983 the henequen subsidy amounted to $30 million USD and benefitted some 57,000 families (Riding 1986). The cash crop emphasis of this program, however, detracted from regional subsistence cultivation, causing increased rural-urban migration and hence the growth of urban slums (Hassan 1993). Severe poverty and chronic malnutrition continued to engulf the Maya. Guatemala has been hardest hit by the international community's reaction to its human rights record. Financial institutions denied the country any substantial aid once repression become indiscrete under General Rlos Montt. Only with the election of civilian president Vinicio Cerezo in 1986 was development assistance forthcoming; the U.S. AID increased its Guatemalan allocation from $24 million USD in 1984 to nearly $140 million USD in 1989 (the year that La Ruta Maya was launched) (Krueger 1989). Since then, Cerezo's successor Jose Serrano has directed a public relations campaign assuring potential investors that his administration will even-handedly prosecute human rights violators (Marquis 1991). An outspoken group of Guatemalan businessmen frustrated with their country's reputation as an international pariah is now holding Serrano to his word; one has sponsored a television program similar to '60 Minutes' that is very critical of the current violence (Acker 1993). 32  - 51 -  (Go 1989; Jenkins 1980 "B") but lie in 'fertile' tourism areas . It enables agriculture-based economies to diversify, bringing much needed foreign exchange. Regional governments view tourism as a means to improve their balance of payments (OMM 1991). Recent tourism receipts offer hope. In Mexico, high inflation and devaluation of the peso caused extreme hardship for the poor, but stimulated an already booming tourist industry (Waters 1988) . Central America has reported a similar trend; tourism is the one economic sector showing 34  increased growth (Waters 1988). The embracing of tourism, particularly culture-oriented AT, by regional governments should be greeted guardedly by the international community. Tourism receipts may facilitate debt repayment; however, the satisfying of this economic bottom line cannot be applauded if it continues to occur at the expense of the region's impoverished and hence disempowered indigenous population.  Thus far,  tourism has only reinforced the 'dual economy' (see Schumacher 1973: 137; Friedmann 1987: 325) that thrives in Mesoamerica (Riding 1986).  Gardner (1991) foresees a regional tourism policy  highlighting AT increasing this polarization: "One of the deepest ironies made plain in the ecotourism discussion is the simultaneous romanticization and devastation of Mayan Indian culture. As with conventional tourism in Guatemala, the Indians are seen as a major asset; their artful weavings and beautiful faces form a colorful backdrop to the archaeological sites and rare wildlife. Yet, these same people are the targets of a consistent policy of ethnocide... It's rather surreal to talk about ecotourism in a country where the people... are essentially in a state of permanent enslavement" (Gardner 1991: 30).  Gunn (1991) defines 'fertile' tourism areas as those having good access from travel markets, abundant cultural and natural assets, adequate infrastructure (water servicing, waste removal etc.), and strong community/financial commitment. As Gormsen (1982) notes, the natural and historical assets of the Mayan region - though ill suited to other types of development - offer great potential for tourism. T h e decrease in world oil prices in 1986 made tourism Mexico's number one foreign currency earner (Heiber 1986). Tourism has now slid back into a secondary position vis-a-vis oil, but generates approximately $3 billion USD annually for Mexico (Foltz 1990; Ramos 1990). 34  - 52 -  Riding (1986: 287) shares this perspective, observing that "The modern Mexico that has unearthed its Indian roots and elevated Indianism to a symbol of nationhood has little room for the Indians of today."  1.2 Solutions Contemplated by Regional Planners Mexico was the first Mesoamerican nation to consider tourism as a regional development tool. When henequen subsidies failed, government planners viewed agriculture at large a s a failure.  They  maintained that nothing grew well in the region, and turned to tourism a s a means to modernize the region and bolster the national e c o n o m y  35  (Bosselman 1978).  Modern-day tourism in the Mexican portion of the Mayan zone started in Cancun. Cancun was built between  1971 and 1975 through $47 million U S D financing shared by the Inter-American  Development Bank ("IADB") and Mexico's National Trust Fund for Tourist Infrastructure ("FONATUR") (Truett & Truett 1982; Pearce 1989).  Its construction was prompted by the 1968 Banco  proposal introducing the idea of building tourist resorts from the ground u p  36  de Mexico  (Shacochis 1989).  In 1980, after commodity prices had crashed for a second time, Mexico unveiled its Regional Plan for Tourism Development in the Caribbean Maya Zone.  This plan aimed to increase regional  tourism by marketing the cultural and natural features of the region in addition to its beaches ( S E C T U R 1991  "B"). It called for an 8,000-room increase in hotel capacity in the States of Quintana Roo,  Campeche, and Yucatan, with emphasis on three-star accommodations ( S E C T U R 1990). That same  l n Actual fact, the region had a rich agricultural past; Mayan communities practising fallowed slash-and-burn had successfully lived there for thousands of years (Bosselman 1978). The region's thin topsoil simply could not withstand the 'modern' agricultural practices accompanying cash crop production (Riding 1986). Nor could it support traditional agricultural practices once monopolized land tenure forced the Maya to cultivate smaller and smaller plots without appropriate fallow periods (Ghali 1977). At Coba, the Yucatec Maya have historically found that a milpa (maize) plot requires 50 years to regenerate; now they often can allot no more than 5 years (Kintz 1990). The soils are alternately leeched and sun-baked, causing land productivity to decline (see Caulfield 1986). 35  T h e Banco de Mexico proposal became the keystone of a thirty-year comprehensive development strategy for Mexico based on tourism megaprojects. It would establish tourism as a national pillar by the time of the debt crisis in 1982 (Shacochis 1989). 36  - 53 -  year, Mexico launched the Integral Program for Tourism Development in the Caribbean Maya Zone, which promised infrastructure expansion in Chiapas and Tabasco as well (SECTUR 1990). None of these plans unfolded due to the debt crisis in 1982. Tourism development remained focused on Cancun and Cozumel. Hotel capacity in those hubs continued to grow, but visitation fell. Between 1985 and 1990  regional occupancy rates decreased to below 50%  37  (SECTUR 1990;  SECTUR 1991 "C"). In this period, "deeply discounted prices, bargain charters and weekend getaway rates... led Mexican destinations to price wars that cut through their bottom line" (Sullivan 09/16/91). This, in conjunction with the decreased spending power of nationals, led Mexico to seek "alternative forms of travel that [would] generate a higher-paying client for a longer stay" (Sullivan 09/16/91). Throughout this period SECTUR struggled to diversify the regional tourism product. In 1984 it developed a series of cultural themes to complement the traditional beach offerings (Curson 1984). Two years later, upon the second fall in oil prices, president Miguel de la Madrid announced the Immediate Action Program for the Development of Tourism (Heiber 1986).  By 1990 the Mexican  Tourist Board had announced several new programs to promote non-traditional areas of the country (Nicholls 1990). These targeted the more sophisticated European traveller, focusing on archaeological sites, culture, and folklore (Foltz 1990; Travel Weekly 04/25/91). A parallel program featuring ecological circuits surfaced at this time as well (Sullivan 09/16/91). SECTUR clearly intended to establish Mexico as a four-season destination through AT (Kanner 1990).  l n Cancun and Cozumel the drop in occupancy rates is largely attributed to hotel expansion. However, Hurricane Gilbert, the earthquake in Mexico City, and the Aeromexico strike all played a part in lower visitation levels (SECTUR 1990; SECTUR 1991 "C"). 37  - 54 -  II. Regional Tourism Collaboration 2.1 Conception of La Ruta Maya  The economic crisis in Mesoamerica prompted regional countries to put aside their differences and collaborate on the promotion of tourism. Mexico and Guatemala resolved contentious issues such as the northward flow of Guatemala's civil war refugees. Guatemala and Belize, in turn, settled their longstanding territory dispute . 38  Regional collaboration led to the notion of creating a multinational tourist circuit called La Ruta Maya (The Maya Route). Discussion of such a circuit was not new. In the 1960s, the Organization of American States ("OAS") and Inter-American Development Bank ("IDB") both considered financing this idea (see Fonseca 1989; OMM 1992 "A"). The concept resurfaced in 1985 or 1986 as a marketing tool (Toriello 1992 "B"). However, it did not gain popularity until promoted by Wilbur Garrett  39  in 1987. Garrett, encouraged by former  Guatemalan president Vinicio Cerezo, made the first official Ruta Maya proposal in conjunction with Washington-based Partners for Livable Places in 1988. The proposal was welcomed by regional governments. In October, 1988 Cerezo and Guatemalan Institute of Tourism ("INGUAT") director Beatriz Zuiiiga Seigne hosted a regional meeting convened by Mexican president Carlos Salinas de Gotari ("Salinas"). This was the first time that Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Belize met to discuss common problems. The five countries in attendance voted unanimously to support La Ruta  Guatemala dropped its decades old claim to Belize in September, 1991 and for the first time recognized Belize as a sovereign nation (LRMCF 1993 "A"). For discussion of how collaboration on Mundo Maya improved relations between Guatemala and Belize see SECTUR (1992).  Wilbur Garrett is past editor of National Geographic magazine and founder of La Ruta Maya Conservation Foundation.  - 55 -  Maya (See Kutay 1989 "C"; LRMCF 1993 "A"; National Geographic News Service 1989). They signed a Declaration of Principles calling for: 1. Harmonious preservation of the culture and natural landscape. 2. Re-evaluation, development and conservation of archaeological sites and their ecological surroundings. 3. Promotion of planned, sustained, and balanced tourist development, which will respect cultural and natural values. 4. Presentation of an integrated proposal to the international community of the most outstanding tourist attractions of the region. (Julio Cesar Fonseca, INGUAT Director, 1989: 234). La Ruta Maya had a broader scope than earlier multinational tourism proposals. The circuit envisioned in the 1960s focused on existing beach and archaeological attractions (Fonseca 1989; OMM 1992 "A"). La Ruta Maya built on this, incorporating a host of new archaeological sites and parks appealing to ecotourists (Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer 1990). Soon after the creation in principle of La Ruta Maya, regional governments set aside lands to give the project life. On February 10, 1989, the Guatemalan legislature approved 44 conservation areas, including 33 new national parks (Cohn 1989). Three months later Mexico and Guatemala ratified an agreement establishing two adjoining biosphere reserves totalling 4.7 million acres (Kutay 1989 "C"). Throughout this planning, La Ruta Maya served as a catalyst for discussion of common problems. Negotiations on a wide range of issues took place, with Mexico and Guatemala setting the pace. In August, 1989 Salinas and Cerezo met at a border ranch to sign thirteen agreements, several of which concerned shared environmental problems (Garrett 1991). Collaboration on La Ruta Maya coincided with other initiatives aimed at streamlining regional development. One such initiative was the 'Action Plan 1989-2000 for the Regional System of Protected Forest Areas in Central America' (PPP 1992), which gave rise to the Paseo Pantera (Panther Path)  - 56 -  conservation and ecotourism project . Another, set in motion at a regional meeting in June, 1990, saw the presidents of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Belize agreeing "to integrate their foundering economies and coordinate all aspects of development, from agriculture to tariffs, environmental protection to debt management" (Gruson 1990: E3). These initiatives, while plagued at times by lack of coordination , cemented the cooperation necessary to tackle an ambitious action 41  program like La Ruta Maya.  2.2 Description of La Ruta Maya La Ruta Maya, the precursor to Mundo Maya, was a collaborative AT project between Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Belize. Geographically, it covered all of Guatemala and Belize, half of El Salvador, the north of Honduras, plus the Mexican states of Chiapas, Tabasco, Campeche, Yucatan and Quintana Roo (OMM 1991), an area of roughly 500,000 square kilometres (Toriello 1992 "A") [see Map 1].  Paseo Pantera (Panther or Jaguar Path) is a five-year regional conservation strategy promoting the restoration and maintenance of the wildlife corridor and watersheds along the Central American isthmus (Ashton 1991 and 1992 "A"; PPP 1992; Toriello 1992 "A"). Ecotourism - in its capacity to generate funds for conservation, foster sustainable economic development for local communities, and educate visitors (Ashton 1992 "B"; PPP 1992) - is central to the project. w  The concept for Paseo Pantera was proposed jointly by Wildlife Conservation International, the New York Zoological Society, and the Caribbean Conservation Organization. These organizations are working closely with other NGOs active in the region, governments, and universities to bring the concept to life. The discussion of national ecotourism councils in Chapter 4 elaborates upon implementation strategies. Conservation International has a program paralleling Paseo Pantera in Belize under its Rainforest Imperative initiative. It is working with the Belize government and local conservation NGOs to extend the area of jaguar habitat incorporated in the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary from the initial 3,000 acres to 106,000 acres (Konstant 1992). According to Ashton (1992 "A"), regional coordinating efforts have been hampered by the number of conservation NGOs participating. The territoriality of these NGOs often precludes information sharing. It is not uncommon for one NGO to impede another's complementary work out of ignorance about project cross-over (Ashton 1992 "B"). The lack of coordination between funding agencies like the U.S. AID and the UNDP, which funnel aid through NGOs, only exacerbates the situation (Ashton 1992 "B"). Ashton (1992 "B") cites the WTO's 'Conservation Strategy for Central America' as a prime example of this. In 1992, the WTO announced the formation of national ecotourism councils, thereby duplicating Paseo Pantera efforts. 41  - 57 -  La Ruta Maya was designed to showcase and preserve the shared cultural, historical, and environmental heritage of participating countries (Kutay 1989 "C"). It highlighted the uniqueness of the region as a whole, whilst emphasizing the particular features of each member (SECTUR 1991 "E"). Planners sought to draw multi-destination tourism (Sullivan 09/09/1991) by promoting the region "as one entity without borders' (Archaeology staff writer 1991). Visitors could take in the vastness of the Mayan world without missing its jewels . 42  The concept behind La Ruta Maya was that tourists would be able to travel through the region to a network of attractions using a single visa. A 1,500 mile all-weather road already encircling the area constituted the core infrastructure; new roads would lead from the main route to the interior (Garrett 1989), and abandoned airstrips would be rehabilitated to accommodate small planes at more remote sites (Toriello 1992 "B"). Tourists would also travel by 'low-impact' alternatives like river boat, mule, and foot trail (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990). Eventually, a cable way or monorail would carry tourists through ecologically sensitive areas to view more isolated wildlife and archaeological ruins (Kutay 1989 "C"). At first glance, La Ruta Maya was simply a clever marketing vehicle. However, as a hybrid of the tourism industry, conservation movement, and development community, its goals were multifaceted . The motives behind La Ruta Maya ranged from pure profit to conservation and/or community 43  development. La Ruta Maya, like most ecotourism programs, had varying shades of altruism.  Mexico, with over 1,000 Mayan archaeological sites, plus ecological attractions like the Sumidero Canyon and Aguas Azules, has the most variety to offer visitors (SECTUR 1990). Guatemala's Tikal,-however, is considered by many archaeological buffs to be the single most important Mayan site. Copan, meanwhile, "has the best restored ruins in Central America" (Lougheed 1988: 180). 4Z  0bservers like Southworth (1989) were positive about La Ruta Maya's potential as a conservation and/or community development tool. Others such as Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer (1990) viewed the sustainable development jargon cloaking the project as a marketing scam. 43  - 58 -  On one level, La Ruta Maya was just a marketing front. It represented an image carefully constructed by participating countries to establish a niche within the international tourism industry. Planners hoped the image would tempt ecotourists to explore the region, be they occasional ecotourists on a cruise (Travel Weekly 12/05/91) or seasoned ecotourists touring nearby Costa Rica. On an altogether different level, La Ruta Maya constituted a plan for integrated regional development. It aimed to "increase environmentally oriented tourism and sustainable, non-destructive development to provide jobs and money to help pay for preservation" (Garrett 1989: 436).  If  implemented in accordance with such ideals, La Ruta Maya offered great hope to the region.  Conclusion  La Ruta Maya was a top-down initiative that pursued development in accordance with the DSP. Garrett (1989, 1991) praised La Ruta Maya as a mechanism to bring the Maya into the twentieth century . 44  The program's social aspects, however, were limited. Most literature on La Ruta Maya  focused on its archaeological and/or ecological components.  Locals, if mentioned, appeared as  recipients of 'trickle down' rather than active agents in their own development.  Omissions and  assumptions of this sort did not pave the way for 'full fare' tourism. The same development model underlying La Ruta Maya has unleashed social change and ecological destruction elsewhere in Latin America. The roads proposed were of particular concern. Road construction in the Amazon Basin has opened the rainforest to colonists and other opportunists (Bryce 1992). This has caused the displacement and acculturation of indigenous peoples (Cowell 1983), plus unprecedented cutting of the rainforest by different industrial sectors and social groups (Muratorio 1988).  Proponents of La Ruta Maya deflected criticism of the plan on the basis of its  Garrett's (1989, 1991) enthusiasm for this aspect of La Ruta Maya illustrates well the integration ideology discussed in Chapter 1.  - 59 -  participatory component. The Ruta Maya plan called for greater local ownership of tourism related services and local management of 'more modest facilities' (Garrett 1989). This would purportedly engender 'trickle down'. The participatory rhetoric surrounding La Ruta Maya was consistent with AT theory, but history did not bode well for its implementation. Racial tensions are high throughout the region. The elite blame Mayan farmers for rainforest loss when in it is their own huge cattle ranches (not traditional 'slash and burn') that are unsustainable (Moran 1981; Perera 1989; Weinberg 1991 "A"). Planners involved in La Ruta Maya circumvented such issues, leaving questions of power unaddressed.  To those benefiting from traditional modes of development the 'full fare' debate is  limited. No one wants to question the system that facilitates their own privileged lifestyle.  - 60 -  Chapter 4: THE CONCEPT & STRUCTURE OF MUNDO MAYA  Introduction  Prior to the launching of La Ruta Maya in 1989, discussion of a related program called Mundo Maya (Mayan World) had begun. Mundo Maya incorporates the concepts associated with La Ruta Maya, but has a wider range of goals. It addresses social issues ignored under La Ruta Maya and is specifically referred to as "alternative' tourism (SECTUR 1993 "B").  I. The Concept Behind Mundo Maya 1.1 The Birth of Mundo Maya  Mundo Maya took shape over a two year period. Official discussion of the program began in October 1988. At the regional meeting hosted by Guatemala that month, delegates were briefed on Mundo Maya (OMM 1991; SECTUR 1991 "E"). In 1989, La Ruta Maya members invited the private sector to join Mundo Maya planning efforts.  The following year, after a series of meetings in  Guatemala and Belize, the various tourism ministries agreed to change the name of La Ruta Maya to Mundo Maya (SECTUR  1992).  Regional governments met in Belize in June, 1990 to ratify  agreements creating the Organizacidn Mundo Maya (Mayan World Organization) ("OMM"). Mundo Maya has a social component missing in La Ruta Maya. As Toriello (1992 "B") notes, Garrett's (1989) conceptualization of La Ruta Maya was narrow.  It focused on archaeological  restoration and left out a number of key natural and cultural attributes. The change in name from La Ruta Maya to Mundo Maya signalled recognition by planners that the uniqueness of the region rests on much more than its archaeological heritage. The distinct traditions and lifestyle of the living Maya are what make the region a world unto itself (SECTUR 1992). Hence SECTUR's proclamation in its  - 61 -  1991 brochure entitled 'Mexico: El  Mundo  Maya'  that "The intention of this program is to offer visitors  an integral vision of Mayan history and culture" (SECTUR 1991 "F": 1).  1.2 Evolution of the Mundo Maya Concept Mundo  Maya  began as a promotional umbrella for participating countries (Hunt 1991 "B").  Gradually, discussions of conservation and archaeological restoration for the purposes of tourism gave way to wider concerns.  Planners began to view  Mundo  Maya  as a mechanism for sustainable  development (Toriello 1992 "B"). The initial framework for  Mundo  Maya  was drafted by an architect acting as executive secretary  for the OMM. According to Toriello (1992 "B"), this framework was an in-house technical exercise only, and never took into consideration the private sector or local communities.  It was important,  nonetheless, in making wider conservation and sustainable development efforts an explicit part of Mundo  Maya.  The first conceptual document for  Mundo  Maya  made public was written by Guatemalan  anthropologist Dr. Alberto Rivera in 1990 (Toriello 1992 "B"). Rivera approached 45  tool for  Mundo  Maya  as a  socio-economic development and was the first to identify community participation as an  essential component. The document submitted by Rivera transformed  Mundo  Maya  from a mere  marketing tool into a potentially 'full fare' AT program. It is the basis for present planning efforts. According to Toriello (1992 "B"), regional governments were initially taken aback by Rivera's vision for  Mundo  Maya.  However, they were quick to accept the concept in principle and become  acquainted with the buzzwords.  The OMM now aims to do more than promote a world class,  Rivera earned his doctoral degree in anthropology from Harvard University, and has extensive experience with participatory community development among the Maya.  - 62 -  multi-product destination; it seeks to foster sustainable economic development through participation of local communities (Toriello 1992 "B"; Gonzalez 1993; SECTUR 1993 "B"). Mundo Maya is now regarded as the centrepiece of a regional sustainable development program based on tourism (Toriello 1992 "A"; OMM 1992 "A"). Planners involved in the program assert that "Our people need an alternative and Mundo Maya is a promising option" (OMM 1991: 1). They describe Mundo Maya as a 'low impact' tourism program (OMM 1991) seeking innovative and practical solutions based on technical advice and consensus (Toriello 1992 "A").  1.3 Objectives of Mundo Maya The overall vision of Mundo Maya is tourism paying for ecological conservation and archaeological restoration (SECTUR 1991 "B"; SECTUR 1992). In this pursuit, Mundo Maya does not differ much from its predecessor La Ruta Maya. It is in the social arena that Mundo Maya stands apart from other regional initiatives. The principle goal of Mundo Maya is to achieve an improved standard of living for local communities through integrated and harmonious development (SECTUR 1991 "A", "B", "D"). This is to be achieved on two levels: first, by circulating tourists through a wider area (SECTUR 1991 "F"); and second, by instituting community participation. Community participation in decision-making and implementation is viewed as key to the program's long-term success (SECTUR 1991 "D"; Toriello 1992 "B"). On paper, Mundo Maya constitutes a "full fare' tourism program. Chapter 8 discusses whether in actual practice Mundo Maya is presently 'full fare'.  1.4 Target Market of Mundo Maya The promotion of Mundo Maya follows careful study by member countries of world tourism and development trends. Statistics indicate that tourists are increasingly choosing to visit places that have  - 63 -  maintained their ecological integrity and cultural/historical identity (SECTUR 1991 "A" and "B"). SECTUR, in background documentation for Mundo Maya (see SECTUR 1991 "D"), noted consumers' related desire for increased 'authenticity' in social contacts and more immediate contact with nature. Mundo Maya capitalizes on this 'greening' of consumer values.  The OMM's executive summary  discusses in depth the growing 'alternative' market segment, noting that "The creation of Mundo Maya as a new world destination is based on the evolution of the demand for a tourist product offering genuine experiences in other cultures in a natural, well-conserved and protected environment (OMM 1992 "A": 2). The OMM specifies that Mundo Maya is not for mass tourists (OMM 1992 "C"). Marco Ordonez, marketing director for INGUAT, asserts: "We don't want mass tourism. We want people that respect the culture of our ethnic groups and the nature of our parks" (Leibman 1993: 11). Mass tourists are the least profitable on a per tourist basis (Butler & Waldbrook 1991) and visit regional beaches for an average of six days only. Mundo Maya is designed to appeal to the more discerning ecotourist.  It places particular  emphasis on attracting cultural tourists (SECTUR 1991 "A", "F"). Cultural tourists, through a minority , 46  are an affluent and hence important market segment (SECTUR 1990). They stay an average of 12 days (SECTUR 1990) and visit a greater number of places (OMM 1992 "A"). Nature tourists, also considered a highly desirable type of tourists to attract (Godwin 1991), hold less priority because 47  "Relatively few tourists in Mexico participated in activities that reflected an orientation to wildlands, jungles, or natural history. The importance of  Cultural tourism represents only 10% of Mexico's tourism (SECTUR 1991 "B"). In the 'Visitor & Motivation Survey' conducted by Mexico in 1986, 80% of respondents listed the Mayan ruins as "not important' (Boo 1990). Of the 17% (1,606,755) of Mexico's foreign arrivals headed for Mundo Maya, only 2% are actual cultural tourists; the other 15% visit the region specifically for its beaches (SECTUR 1991 "A", "B"). 47  Nature-oriented tourists spend an overage of $90/day more than other tourists (Ruggia 1991).  - 64 -  beaches and sightseeing in the decision to visit Mexico, as well as its rich cultural activities, are what most tourists enjoy" (Boo 1990: 115). Organizers of Mundo Maya believe the program to be at the cutting edge of recent trends (Toriello 1992 "A"). The OMM calls Mundo Maya "a product of the 90's and of the coming century" (OMM 1992 "A": 6).  II. Structure of Mundo Maya 2.1 Organizational Framework As noted above, the five-nation OMM was founded in June, 1990. Initially, Mexico headed the OMM (Alisan 1990). This continued until the election of Guatemala's official OMM representative as Executive Secretary in April, 1991. The unfolding of Mundo Maya was initially guided by bilateral decisions between Mexico and Guatemala (Toriello 1992 "B"). Mexico's Ministry of Tourism ("SECTUR") had the budget, staff, and experience to undertake early feasibility studies. Guatemala's tourism ministry ("INGUAT") oversaw the next level of feasibility studies coordinated in conjunction with the European Economic Community ("EEC") through the Technical Secretariat of the OMM (OMM 1991; SECTUR 1991 "E"). Belize, however, would play an increasingly prominent role in steering Mundo Maya (Ashton 1992 "B"; Toriello 1992 "B") . 48  2.2 Involvement of the Private Sector  The OMM (1991) views participation by the private sector as critical to the success of Mundo Maya. The private sector will implement the policies arrived at by the OMM.  l n March, 1988 the five countries participating in La Ruta Maya requested technical assistance from the E E C through INGUAT (OMM 1991; SECTUR 1991 "E"). The following year the E E C sponsored a feasibility study for Mundo Maya. This, together with a parallel study undertaken by Belize, determined Mundo Maya to be a viable concept (SECTUR 1992). 48  - 65 -  Early overtures by the OMM toward the private sector were publicity oriented. The OMM (1991) estimated that the private sector would undertake 70% of the initiatives needed to place Mundo Maya on marketplace.  The national commissions therefore spent considerable time organizing  meetings with regional tour operators to introduce the Mundo Maya concept (SECTUR 1992) and encourage their participation in upcoming trade fairs (SECTUR 1991 "C"). Promotional meetings organized by the OMM had an explicit educational component. Mundo Maya officials carefully outlined not only the program concept but also its goals (SECTUR 1992). This helped tour operators devise products in keeping with Mundo Maya's emphasis on 'low impact' tourism. It also familiarized them with the high operating standards required by the industry to make Mundo Maya sustainable in the long-term. If Mundo Maya was marketed according to one set of principles but unfolded in keeping with another, the opportunity for 'full fare' tourism would be lost. Promotional meetings won support for Mundo Maya and led to ongoing consultation between the public and private sectors. In 1989, each country established its own management committee. The various committees began to meet regularly at local and regional forums. Their discussions were relayed back to the OMM through state governments or the national tourism ministry (SECTUR 1991 "A") The OMM's emphasis on early consultation had one shortcoming. It did not include grassroots organizations. Those invited to participate in the formative meetings were traditional power groups. Hotel, tour operator, transportation, and travel agent organizations all had representation, as did local chambers of commerce and businessmen (SECTUR 1992). The Maya themselves, not to mention the communities targeted for visitation, had no voice (Faust 1993). This was a strange and foreboding start for a program allegedly committed to community participation.  - 66 -  2.3 The Creation of Destination Circuits  Involvement of the private sector in Mundo Maya planning has been chiefly in the creation of regional tourism circuits. These circuits constitute the product offering of Mundo Maya. They are not simply tourist corridors, but a collection of representative sites presented in a portfolio format. Under Mundo Maya, each country is to devise its own tourist circuit(s) for promotion in joint marketing materials. The public and private sectors collaborate in this effort (SECTUR 1992). Their suggestions are forwarded to each nation's respective technical secretariat, which analyze the recommended circuits in view of the social and ecological conditions of the said locales. The technical secretariats, in turn, coordinate with the national ecotourism councils established under Paseo Pantera*  9  Mundo Maya and Paseo Pantera differ significantly in structure. To begin, their membership is quite different. Mexico is not a party to Paseo Pantera, while Costa Rica and Panama are. Funding arrangements also vary. Mundo Maya is chiefly member funded; Paseo Pantera, on the other hand, relies heavily on aid from the Office for Central American Programs ("ROCAP") and the U.S. AID through its Regional Project for the Management of Natural Resources ("RENARM") (Ashton 1992 "A", "B"). These differences are bridged through Mundo Maya's reliance on the Paseo Pantera national ecotourism councils ("NECs") for implementation. The NECs convene with Mundo Maya officials and other regional organizations using ecotourism as a model for sustainable development. This consultation not only ensures that Mundo Maya and Paseo Pantera efforts remain complementary, but fosters cooperation between participating conservation NGOs as well (Ashton 1992 "B"). Beyond coordination, the purpose of the NECs developed under Paseo Pantera is twofold (Ashton 1992 "B"). The councils provide a forum for delegates to discuss their respective visions and problems. They also monitor the policies and activities of member countries' Ministries of Tourism. The structure of these NECs is far-sighted (Ashton 1992 "A"). Each council strives to incorporate stakeholders from all levels, including representatives from local communities and grassroots NGOs. Council members sit together and create their own national strategy through the aid of an appointed facilitator (often Paseo Pantera's regional director, Ray Ashton). This facilitator plays a catalyst role only, allowing each council to formulate its own decision-making process and action plan. The hope is that this arrangement will enable the NECs to be self-sustaining once the facilitator withdraws. One of Ashton's (1992 "B") prime concerns thus far is that the NGOs sitting on the NECs may be too conservation specific to serve wider community objectives. Although each NEC is responsible for the implementation of its own action plan, a regional ecotourism council exists to provide cohesion. NEC representatives communicate their country's perspective to the parent council The regional council translates the various plans into a cooperative conservation and ecotourism strategy. It then coordinates funding applications to development agencies like the U.S. AID and World Bank.  - 67 -  to assess implementation feasibility and options (Ashton 1992 "B"; Toriello 1992 "A", "B"). Decisions are relayed back to the national Mundo Maya commission for final approval. In Guatemala, the national Mundo Maya commission decided to promote five different circuits, each featuring a different region of country.  Each circuit is promoted by way of its distinguishing  features, i.e. the Peten for its archaeology and the highlands for their contemporary Mayan communities. Tourists are directed to one or two main attractions along the circuit and then a series of complementary sites. In the highlands, for instance, Lake AtiMn and Chichicastenango constitute the hub from which tourists can partake in the markets and fiestas of other towns. Other member countries have followed suit, creating thematic circuits. Together, the circuits showcase the full diversity of the region. Visitors can sample a variety of ecological zones, historical sites, and cultural experiences. These include rainforests, karst topography (e.g. underground and white water rivers, caves), volcanoes, and coral reefs in the natural sphere. On the cultural front, colonial, Caribbean, and indigenous communities and their respective cultures are represented (OMM 1991; SECTUR 1991 "B")  2.4 Intra-Regional & External Technical Assistance The delineation of circuits and preparation of chosen sites for visitation within Mundo Maya has involved considerable technical assistance. Member countries needed to learn how to identify their strengths and weaknesses in the context of a 'low impact' tourism program and then develop circuits in a way that would not compromise the longevity of Mundo Maya. Technical assistance has occurred on two levels, the first being intra-regional. In 1990, Mexico signed tourism cooperation accords with Honduras, El Salvador, and Belize (SECTUR 1990). By October, 1991 a bilateral accord was in place with Guatemala as well (SECTUR 1991 "A"). These  - 68 -  accords assured the Central American partners of Mundo Maya - less experienced with tourism and in a deeper financial crisis - support from Mexico . 50  Technical assistance from donor countries has been an integral part of Mundo Maya as well. From the beginning, the EEC and World Tourism Organization ("WTO") both backed the notion of Mundo Maya (SECTUR 1991 "A"). The EEC, as mentioned above, sponsored a pivotal feasibility study in 1989. The WTO stepped in once the program was underway in 1991 with recommendations for improving the information and statistical systems essential to planning and monitoring Mundo Maya (SECTUR 1992). The EEC, interested in social development component of Mundo Maya (Toriello 1992 "B"), has been intricately involved at each stage of the program. Initially, the EEC provided straight technical assistance. It delivered the 1989 feasibility study and counselled the OMM on marketing strategies. Dialogue between the EEC and OMM, however, soon led to a less streamlined approach. The OMM found the EEC's feasibility study - contracted out to a Spanish consulting firm - to be of limited help, as it lacked an action plan (Toriello 1992 "B"). It wanted to draw on the expertise of a dispersed field of ecotourism specialists rather than a single European firm, and hence requested new consultants for the second phase of feasibility studies. In February, 1991 the EEC approved the OMM's request and committed $1 million USD over the next two years (SECTUR 1990 and 1992). The bulk of this money went to marketing studies and the creation of promotional materials (see Chapters 6 and 7).  SECTUR, in cooperation with Mexico's Ministry of External Relations, has sponsored tourism development seminars for the public and private sectors in each country (SECTUR 1992). These resulted in plans to build a marina in Belize City and an airport at the Copan archaeological site in Honduras (Archaeology staff writer 1991). FONATUR (Mexico's National Trust Fund for Tourism Infrastructure), meanwhile, has extended technical assistance for the launching of two maritime ecology projects: Tomasal in Honduras and Bahia de Amatique in Guatemala (SECTUR 1992).  - 69 -  Conclusion  Mundo Maya is conceptualized as a 'low impact' tourism program grounded in community participation.  The guiding tourism ministries (SECTUR and INGUAT) have approached the  implementation of Mundo Maya cautiously, focussing on education as the link to consistency between public sector goals and private sector implementation. While this approach is far-sighted, its top-down orientation could squelch the participatory component and hence sustainability of the program. The exclusion of grassroots representatives from the unfolding of Mundo Maya is incompatible with the professed program goals.  - 70 -  Chapter 5: POLICIES FACILITATING & INHIBITING MUNDO MAYA  Introduction  The concepts and goals of Mundo Maya outlined in the previous chapter signify a potential departure by member countries from traditional planning practices. This departure could not be achieved if the sustainable development rhetoric pervading program documents was not backed by concrete policy. While the formal participatory component of Mundo Maya has yet to be resolved, there are a number of initiatives underway that have created an atmosphere for 'full fare' tourism to evolve. These include legislation and policy-making by regional governments, as well as innovative programs operated through NGOs. Examples of the former are discussed on a country by country basis below; the latter are covered in Chapter 9.  I. Policies Facilitating the Achievement of Mundo Maya Goals 1.1 Complementary Policy in Mexico  Support for Mundo Maya in Mexico follows increasing recognition by government officials of Mexico's unique status and potential as one of the world's six 'mega diversity' countries (Boo 1990; see Caulfield 1986 as well). Mundo Maya, the world's first explicitly alternative program of such scope , 51  marks an attempt by Mexico to expand its image abroad in line with emerging ecological and social values. It is also a highly pragmatic bid to fund conservation. Most LICs boasting a successful parks program attribute its survival to tourism revenues (Warner 1991). As collaboration on Mundo Maya proceeded, Mexico made a series of unilateral moves to facilitate its implementation.  In 1988 it passed The General Law for Ecological Balance &  A handful of countries like Bhutan, Mauritius, the Maldives, Malawi - and most recently, the African micro-state of Sao Tomei E Principe (Ashton 1992 "B") - has each made efforts to direct rather than respond to tourism growth (Fineman 1990). Mundo Maya, however, is the only multi-national initiative of this nature. 51  - 71 -  Environmental Protection, which stressed the importance of protected areas, "frequently mentioning] the advantages of nature tourism to national parks and the need to develop nature tourism" (Boo 1990: 111). Soon thereafter Mexico incorporated ecological concerns into its international platform. The government placed a full-page advertisement in leading American newspapers on World Environment Day in June, 1990 that featured a photo of president Salinas under the headline "If we don't address the issue of global ecology, we won't have to worry about other issues" (Branigin 1990: A18). In February, 1992 Mexico hosted the first biodiversity conference convened by a head of state. Mexico's hosting of the biodiversity conference was a particular boon to Mundo Maya. Salinas used the occasion to announce the expansion of the Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve by 55,000 hectares (Conservation International 1992 "B"; Perera 1992).  The expansion brought the  archaeological corridor between Bonampak and Yaxchten under protected status, and extended the 52  conservation zone comprised of the adjacent Montes Azules and Maya Biosphere Reserves  53  (biosphere reserves discussed in Footnote 82) [see Map 3]. Pedro Joaquin Coldwell, Mexico's Minister of Tourism, has been the driving force behind these initiatives. Coldwell has earned a reputation as one of Mexico's most ecology-minded officials. During  Yaxchilan is second in importance to Palenque as a classical Maya site, and is sacred to the southern Lacandon Maya, who believe it to be the centre of the earth and the place where human life began (Perera 1988). 0lL  T h e 3,312 square kilometre (Kurlansky 1985) Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo was established in 1972 following lobbying by Gertrude Blom and other Mexican conservationists in order to preserve part of the Lacandon Maya's homeland as well as endangered species habitat (see Peerman 1985). Controversy arose when the Lacandon Maya were subsequently persuaded by lumber interests to sign away their cutting rights (Kurlansky 1985). In 1991, the reserve was targeted for ecodevelopment by Conservation International through a $4 million USD 'debt for nature' swap (Uhlig 1991). 53  The Maya Biosphere Reserve in Guatemala is a merger of seven former parks covering approximately 2.47 million acres (or one third) of the Peten (Gardner 1991; Damsker et al. 1992). It includes Tikal, plus the less famous archaeological sites of El Mirador, Zacatal, Nakbe, Zultun, Naranjo, Uaxactun, and Piedras Negras. Although controversial oil explorations began inside the reserve in the fall of 1991 (Bryce 1992; see Brooke 1993 for discussion of threat that oil production poses for ecotourism elsewhere in Latin America), organizations such as the La Ruta Maya Conservation Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation are heavily involved in conservation efforts there (LRMCF1993 "A"). The Maya Biosphere Reserve also adjoins the Rio Bravo Conservation Area in Belize and Calakmul reserve in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula (Perera 1989; Brosnahan 1991).  - 72 -  his previous term as governor of Quintana Roo, he set aside 10% of the state's territory to create the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve . He also halted hotel construction on Cozumel until environmental 54  impact studies were completed (Travel Weekly 04/25/91). Coldwell's influence, and the global support garnered by Mexico through its far-sighted domestic and international policies, may well keep Mundo Maya on track. Several influential NGOs based in North America and Europe now have a stake in Mundo Maya through debt-for-nature swaps and other project funding or technical assistance. This provides the international community with great leverage on conservation and community development issues central to Mundo Maya. Still, there is a vast contradiction between the type of development proposed under Mexico's megaprojects program (discussed below in this chapter) and that proposed under Mundo Maya. There are essentially two different ways to interpret Mexico's involvement in Mundo Maya. To the cynic and perhaps realist, Mundo Maya is little more than a magnet to attract private investors to the megaprojects scheme, and Mexico's environmental crusade is a smokescreen. To the optimist, Mundo Maya is a significant departure from current planning practices. Literature on Mundo Maya issued by SECTUR suggests the latter.  As time goes on, the  Mundo Maya concept is increasingly refined (see SECTUR 1991 "D"; OMM 1992 "A", "B", "C"). On paper it now contains all the elements to constitute a 'full fare' AT program. The hitch is that Mundo Maya has been spearheaded to a large degree by SECTUR, a bureaucracy steeped in the DSP and adept at implementing megaproject-type tourism. Whether SECTUR can evolve sufficiently as an organization to tackle the goals set out in Mundo Maya literature remains to be seen.  The Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve, established by presidential decree in 1986, lies 150 kilometres south of Cancun (see Emory 1989; Jones & Wersch 1990). It is one third tropical forest, one third fresh and saltwater marshes and mangroves, one third marine environment and includes 20 archaeological sites. In 1989 the Mexican conservation group Amigos de Sian Ka'an worked with local communities to start a small-scale ecotourism program in the reserve's buffer zone (see Emory 1989; Boo 1990; Bezaury-Creel 1991).  - 73 -  1.2 Complementary Policy in Guatemala  The evolution of AT-friendly policy in Guatemala is of particular interest, as Guatemala has undergone a dramatic swing in tourism and conservation policy since 1986. Guatemala's ability to bring these policies to life could make or break  Mundo  Maya.  For this reason, a detailed discussion  of these policies follows. One cannot appreciate the challenge of achieving  Mundo Maya  goals without  understanding the complex socio-political climate in Guatemala . 55  Until recently, Guatemala had a political climate intolerant of conservation. National parks, with the exception of those at Tikal and Lake AtiMn , consisted of urban recreational areas with fountains 56  and statues. The Peton was considered a subversive zone and governed separately by the military (Cohn 1989). Conservation efforts did not begin in Guatemala until the early 1980s. The declaration by UNESCO of Tikal as a World Cultural and Natural Monument in 1979 (INGUAT 1992 "A"), and ensuing effort by UNESCO and the UNEP to promote global cooperation on biodiversity research (Tolba & ElKholy 1992), brought international attention to Guatemala's unique bio-regions. number of conservation initiatives in Guatemala.  This prompted a  In December, 1981 the Centre for Conservation  T h e socio-political climate in Guatemala is representative of that throughout the region where the Maya are the ethnic majority. Politics in the Mexican state of Chiapas are comparable. So too are the politics of El Salvador and Honduras. 55  In analyzing the implementation of Mundo Maya, it is useful to examine trends in Guatemala. This country has more notoriety to overcome than Mexico, yet by virtue of its ecological endowment has a higher international profile than El Salvador or Honduras. It therefore represents the middle ground insofar as complexity of implementation is concerned. Mexico, with its excess of sustainable development rhetoric, has a lot to live up to on the international scene. Guatemala is increasingly policed by the international conservation community. El Salvador and Honduras stand quite apart in this regard. Their human rights records are no worse than those of Mexico or Guatemala; however, neither is a conservation 'hot spot'. Out of the spotlight, neither is under significant pressure as of yet to declare its stance on the participatory planning practices that supposedly underpin the Mundo Maya concept. Lake  56  Atitlan is Guatemala's number one tourist attraction (Whatmore & Eltringham 1990). The national park  there protects the only remaining habitat of the pok, a critically endangered flightless water bird.  - 74 -  Studies ("CECON") at the National University of San Carlos launched Guatemala's biotopes program . Shortly thereafter a micro-biological research station specializing in biodiversity questions opened in Guatemala City. These advances set the foundation for AT in Guatemala. In its early years the Guatemalan conservation movement suffered ongoing intimidation. Environmental activists were threatened; professor Mario Dary, founder of the biotopes program, was murdered . Evidence has surfaced implicating lumber and cattle interests with ties to the military 58  (Cohn 1989; Weinberg 1991 "A"). Only with the return of civilian government in 1986 did conservation become politically correct and hence viable in Guatemala. The new president, Vinicio Cerezo ("Cerezo"), took the Brundtland report as a cue and created a National Commission on the Environment . This brought conservation 59  concerns into the mainstream. Cohesion within the national conservation movement soon increased, with CECON remaining prominent . 60  The change in political atmosphere, combined with mounting international interest in saving the Pet6n through AT and other such models for sustainable development, led to discussion of Mundo  L)ntil 1986, the biotopos program consisted of four smaller-scale protected areas designed to provide sanctuary to a specific threatened species: 1) the 2,800 acre Mario Dary Rivera Reserve in the cloud forest of Alta Verapaz to protect the quetzal; 2) the 1,600 acre Cerro Cahul Reserve on the north-east shore of Lake Peten, preserving Peten turkey habitat; 3) the 18,000 acre Chocon Machacas Reserve to provide refugee for West Indian manatees in the mangrove swamps lining Lake Izabal; and 4) the Monterrico Natural Reserve in the mangrove area at Taxisco on the Pacific Coast, home to three species of endangered marine turtles (Cohn 1989). 3/  58  Since the late 1960s, the University of San Carlos has been known in Guatemala as a meeting spot for the political left. Several students and professors have been tortured or 'disappeared' (See Daniels 1990: 37-43). 59  During the presidencies of General Romeo Lucas Garcia and General Efrain Rios Montt, Guatemala earned a black reputation for its indiscrete and numerous human rights violations (See Burbach & Flynn 1984: 58). Cooperation with international conservation efforts post-1986 served as a convenient facelift for Guatemala on the international scene. Juan Carlos Godoy and Ismael Ponciano were instrumental in bringing the various branches of the Guatemalan conservation movement together (Cohn 1989). Godoy, director of CECON until January 1989, now works out of the Centre for Agricultural Training & Research in Costa Rica; Ponciano succeeded Godoy as director of C E C O N . 60  - 75 -  Maya. The army handed over administration of the Peten to the government. Consequently, ecodevelopment initiatives that had been unthinkable became possible (Cohn 1989).  Domestic  conservation NGOs began to table previously taboo issues and concepts, such as the link between community participation (i.e. human rights) and environmental protection. Conservation NGOs prepared the way for Mundo Maya by making land available for it. CECON expanded its biotopes program, opening the larger Laguna del Tigre-Rlo Escondido, Naachtun-Dos Lagunas, and San Miguel La Palotada reserves in the Peten. It then joined forces with Friends of the Forest and Defenders of Nature, both local conservation groups, to call for a major expansion of Guatemala's parks (Cohn  1989).  This campaign coincided with efforts by international  conservation groups like La Ruta Maya Conservation Foundation to promote the Mundo Maya concept and give it substance through 'debt for nature' swaps . 61  The 'debt for nature' swap concept arose in the mid-1980s out of the international conservation community's concern about debt-driven environmental degradation (Patterson 1990; Hamilton 1991). It involves money raised by conservation NGOs (often North American) being applied through an agent like the WWF or CI to an LICs international and/or commercial debt in return for local conservation assurances (Cohn 1988). In 1991, CI negotiated a $4 million USD deal with the Mexican government to expand the El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve in the Lacandon rainforest (see Uhlig 1991). The 'debt for nature' swap concept has provoked as certain degree of scepticism in the development community. Although Costa Rica converted 5% of its national commercial bank debt 1987-1988 (Coone 1989), most countries can expect to convert only 1 to 2% of their debt load (Kidder 1989) due largely to the inflationary effect of such transactions (Coone 1989; Christian Science Monitor editorial 1991). Mundo Maya members fall in this latter category, as the number of landless and near landless Maya and ladino farmers precludes the setting aside of vast tracts of land for conservation (Perera 1989). Debt swaps thus tend to impact little on the national debt of participating countries (Patterson 1990). Critics like Gray (1991:16), furthermore, are quick to point out that they "provide no solutions to the causes of deforestation, such as landlessness causing rural poor to move into forests, [or] government incentives to companies and [wealthy] landowners that clear forest land for speculation and commercial profit from logging." From an indigenous perspective, the benefit of debt swaps is questionable. A Latin American indigenous coalition informed conservation NGOs present at the Brundtland Commission Hearings that: "We are concerned about the 'debt for nature swaps' which put your organizations in a position of negotiating with our governments for the future of our homelands... While we appreciate your efforts on our behalf, we want to make it clear that we never delegated any power of representation to the environmental community or organization within that community... We propose that you work directly with our organizations on all your programs and campaigns which affect our homelands (Cultural Survival Quarterly 1991 :28).  - 76 -  In 1987 the Cerezo government succumbed to pressure from conservation NGOs and introduced a bill in congress to dramatically increase Guatemala's parkland. This led to the February 10, 1989 legislation creating 44 conservation areas (some of which incorporated existing parks and biotopes) and the Protected Areas Law passed in February 1990 (Weinberg 1991 "A"). Guatemala now has 4.5 million acres, or 15% of its national territory, earmarked for conservation (Perera 1989; Gardner 1991). It ranks first among Latin American nations for percentage of territory allocated on paper to ecological reserves (Cohn 1989) . Despite these impressive advances, speculation exists as to the 62  future of Guatemala's conservation areas. Most of the areas, apart from the Maya Biosphere Reserve, are not only small and isolated but lack formal boundaries (Weinberg 1991 "A"). No funds were allocated, moreover, for the hiring or training of park personnel (Perera 1989). While scepticism is warranted, so too is optimism. With Mundo Maya, Guatemala has become a conservation "hot spot'. Quirigua , near Lake Izabal, received UNESCO's coveted World Cultural 63  and Natural Monument designation (INGUAT 1991 "A"). Several international conservation NGOs are now active in the Lake Izabal/R/o Dulce environs on Guatemala' Caribbean coast in addition to the Peten.  These developments signal increasing support from the  international  community.  Conservationists around the world stand poised for aggressive lobbying should the government falter in its role as environmental steward. Guatemala has recognized the role that conservation NGOs play in its future and turned to them for assistance with the management of protected areas. The new National Council for Protected Areas ("NCPA"), in charge of park management, has government agencies and domestic conservation NGOs sitting side by side. At times, old hierarchies seem inverted. The council's first chairperson was vice-president of Friends of the Forest; CECON plays a high profile coordinating role (Cohn 1989).  62  Costa Rica, in contrast, has only 11% of its national territory set aside for conservation (Cohn 1989).  6 3  Quirigua is home to the largest stelae carved by the ancient Maya.  - 77 -  The NCPA now relies heavily on technical assistance from international conservation NGOs. In 1988 it solicited funding from U.S. AID, the WWF, the Nature Conservancy, and Costa Rica's Centre for Agricultural Training & Research for a detailed assessment of identified conservation areas. The study, contracted out to the Nature Conservancy, resulted in a submission to Congress prioritizing conservation sites, delineating their bounds, and proposing management strategies like AT (Weinberg 1991 "A"). The Nature Conservancy report has had important implications for Mundo Maya.  It gave  substance to the much lauded national parks program by securing park and reserve boundaries. It also related the concepts associated with biosphere reserves (discussed below in this chapter) to Guatemala. Sustainable development strategies discussed by the NCPA - such as selective logging; the harvest of jade palm, allspice, and chicle; not to mention ecotourism (Cohn 1989) - were grounded in site specific recommendations. The commitment of international conservation NGOs to 'full fare' tourism in regional biosphere reserves has fostered significant progress with Mundo Maya in the Peten. Conservation International has assisted CECON with management research in each of its biotopes; the World Wildlife Fund, meanwhile, is involved in CECON training programs for local wildlife researchers, managers, and guards (Cohn 1989).  In April, 1992 the MacArthur Foundation of Chicago renewed regional  collaboration efforts, sponsoring a conference to discuss the formation of a 'conservation cooperation zone' in the Pet6n  M  (Scott 1992 "A"). Conservationists, scientists, and academic groups active in  tourism-funded biodiversity attended. Ironically, the downfall of Mundo Maya in Guatemala may be this convergence of interests on the Peten. The Peten is already a major tourist destination. Tikal is the major draw, but a growing  T h e MacArthur Foundation envisioned this 'conservation cooperation zone' being administered under the umbrella of either the Central American Commission for Environment & Development or the Switzerland-based International Union for Conservation of Nature ("ICUN"). 64  - 78 -  number of ecotourists are flocking to the area's caves as well  (INGUAT 1992 "A").  International  conservation NGOs will lose ground once visitor levels increase. Yet increase they will, for 80% to 90% of Guatemala's Mundo Maya marketing efforts focus on the Peten (Toriello 1992 "B"). The preoccupation with the Peten points to a major flaw in Mundo Maya.  Government  agencies and conservation NGOs are rallying behind the conservation cause, forgetting wider social development questions. The Peten may be the most 'underdeveloped' part of Guatemala in terms of roads and other infrastructure (Toriello 1992 "B"); however, this area "is home to only a tiny fraction of the [countryjs] population" (INGUAT 1991 "C").  It is the highlands that have the greatest  concentration of indigenous peoples and hence poverty.  From a social development standpoint  Guatemala's energies are ill-divided if not utterly misplaced. Confining Mundo Maya to the Peten will have serious consequences for Guatemala. In the short-term, focusing on the Peten will enhance international prestige and facilitate 'national security'. The ecological degradation caused by this policy, nonetheless, promises to increase national poverty and social tensions. Guatemala's differential treatment of the highland Maya can only worsen the situation. As Leong (1989: 373) notes: "National tourism, by amplifying cultural consciousness (and its corollary, cultural pride) of different social groups can sustain those groups that are being singled out and sponsored, can suppress those groups that are ignored or denied, and, through such differential attention and neglect, can heighten ethnic tension among groups". In Guatemala, this amounts to increasing polarization between whites (or ladinos) and the Maya. This end is hardly consistent with 'full fare' tourism.  The Peten "has some of the most spectacular and scientifically significant caves to be found anywhere" (INGUAT 1992 "A": 13). These range from the caves of Naj Tunich near Poptun, which are decorated with carbon frescoes dating back to 800 B.C., to Actun Kan (the 'Cave of the Serpent') near Santa Elena, with its dramatic stalagmites and stalactites (INGUAT 1992 "A").  - 79 -  1.3 Complementary Policy in Belize  The Mundo Maya partner best poised to actually implement 'full fare' AT is probably Belize: "Many observers give the government high marks for going after the tourist dollar in a rational way. It turned down many development offers in the 1960s and 70s, and much of the country remains isolated and unpopulated, lacking roads and infrastructure. Yet these same factors have helped preserve the country's ecology and have led to the surge in ecotourism" (Contours 1991: 28). The majority of tourist properties remain small (Mallan 1991). This in itself weeds out potential visitors. Belize "has everything for the ecotourist" (Whatmore & Eltringham 1990: 237), and very little for the mainstream traveller. Since the newly elected government made tourism second priority in its national growth strategy in 1984, Belize has taken a proactive approach to tourism planning. In 1988 the government issue a comprehensive 'Integrated Tourism Policy & Strategy Statement' addressing the benefits and drawbacks of tourism development (see Boo 1990). By the close of 1991 its Ministry of Tourism had hosted a series of ecotourism related seminars, including the first Caribbean Conference on Ecotourism - the theme being 'Belize: Keep it Natural, Keep it Small' (Mallan 1991) - and a workshop on Frontier Protected Areas of Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala (see Nations 1992). At the same time, the Ministry left administration of most national parks to the Belize Audobon Society (Jones 1991).  Belize's  recognition of the symbiosis between tourism and conservation, and its peaceful socio-political climate , bode well for the implementation of Mundo Maya concepts there. 66  The outlook for the Maya in Belize is quite different than elsewhere in Mundo Maya. In Belize, the Mopan and Kekcki Maya comprise only 10% of the national population (Brosnahan 1991), compared to 50% to 95% elsewhere in Mundo Maya (Riding 1986; Glassman 1990). They therefore face the challenges of an indigenous minority instead of a violently repressed indigenous majority.  - 80 -  II. Policies Threatening the Achievement of Mundo Maya Goals 2.1  Background  Policies supportive of Mundo Maya are in place in Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize; even so, there is cause for concern. Mexico and Guatemala, which together form the bulk of Mundo Maya, both display extreme shift in policy priority.  One moment they target sustainable development through  Mundo Maya and parallel programs.  The next they utterly disregard the goal of sustainable  development, chasing economic growth through short-sighted strategies incompatible with Mundo Maya. This section is designed to expose the policies inconsistent with Mundo Maya. These policies accentuate the theory-practice gap displayed by Mundo Maya. Ultimately, they could undermine the program.  2.2 Cancun as the 'Gateway' to Mundo Maya SECTUR views the alternative tour market as a supplement to rather than replacement of the Yucaten beach crowd . Cancun, together with Cozumel, draws 89% of the foreign tourists visiting 67  Mexico's Mayan zone (SECTUR 1990). Mexican planners have thus pursued the expansion of Cancun and promotion of Mundo Maya in tandem. In government circles, the success of Mundo Maya as a foreign currency earner is seen to hinge on the continued promotion of Cancun and vice versa. Cancun is lauded as the 'gateway' to Mundo Maya (Archaeology staff writer 1991; Budd 1991).  Mundo Maya, in turn, is expected to  "reinforce the competitiveness of the Mexican Caribbean beach destinations against other international  This stance is consistent with the discussion in Chapter 2 of the relationship between "alternative' and mass tourism.  - 81 -  destinations in the region that offer only sun and sand" (SECTUR 1991 "D": 4-5; see also SECTUR 1990). Mexican planners picture a symbiotic relationship between Cancun and Mundo Maya. Cancun was the 'growth pole' that justified the extension of infrastructure to Mayan sites. Now that Mundo Maya is underway, Cancun is to serve as a place for alternative tourists to rest (Gormsen 1982). It also is an important market for ecotour organizers to tap  68  The irony is that Cancun is designed to appeal to everyone but the alternative tourist. Between 1986 and 1989 hotel capacity in Cancun increased from 7,000 to 15,300 (SECTUR 1990). Most of the construction during this building boom concentrated on the gran turismo and five-star categories, making Cancun a more upscale resort (Remington 1989). All along, SECTUR intended to draw more American mass tourists; Mundo Maya and the European market only became important when occupancy rates in Cancun failed to keep pace with construction (see next chapter). 69  The role that Cancun plays in Mundo Maya gives cause for concern. There is a very real danger that Mexico's quest for debt relief could cloud long-term planning (Riegert 1991). Planners know that a considerable and growing portion of the Cancun market arrives on chartered flights to stay in packaged accommodation (Belzaury-Creel 1991). This trend may simply intensify impacts in the Cancun corridor, as mass tourists seek out the pyramid-shaped hotels, buy pseudo Maya art in hotel lobbies, and then take an air-conditioned excursion bus to Tulum or Coba (Garrett 1991). However, 70  68  T h e Cancun market is the foundation for ecotours conducted in the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve by the  Mexican conservation NGO Amigos de Sian Ka'an (see Bezaury-Creel 1991). 69  l n 1986 Cancun hotels experienced an 81% occupancy rate; this had dropped to 57% by 1989 (SECTUR 1990).  70  Half of the tourists visiting Cancun and environs purchase an archaeological excursion (SECTUR 1991 "A", "B"). Tulum, the post-Classic Maya site on the shore of the Caribbean at the northern edge of the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve, is Mexico's most visited archaeological site (Jones & Wersch 1990). SECTUR (1990) reports that 40% of mass tourists visiting Cancun make an excursion Tulum and nearby Xel-Ha (see also SECTUR 1982). Coba, home of the highest Mayan pyramids in Mexico, is 52 kilometres past Tulum on the Cancun-ZWerida highway. Chichen-ltza is another site popular with the Cancun crowd.  - 82 -  it might also serve to extend Cancun-like impacts throughout the region to sites featured in Mexico's circuits. M6rida, in the hub of the archaeological zone 320 kilometres west of Cancun (Alisan 1990), could be hit particularly hard . 71  It is difficult to discern whether SECTUR will be faithful to Mundo Maya rhetoric or just use it as a mask for the proliferation of mass tourism. Literature issued by the OMM (see OMM 1992 "A", "C") offers great hope, but certain steps taken by Mexico in synchrony with Mundo Maya planning does not. In 1990, the same year that Mundo Maya was launched, Mexico's General Director of Tourism Policy, Jeronimo Ramos, announced: "Our short-term goal is to double the annual number of foreign visitors and tourist expenditures to 10 million people and $5 billion USD respectively by 1994. This represents an annual growth rate of 9.5 and 11 percent respectively" (SECTUR 1990). On another occasion that year Ramos elaborated on this policy: "Let me begin by stating the fundamental belief that lies at the heart of Mexico's development philosophy. It is that, given our wealth of natural attributes and historic attractions, the potential for growth in our tourism sector is virtually unlimited" (Ramos 1990: 221). These remarks, though national in scope, held particular ramifications for Mundo Maya. The southeastern portion of Mexico comprising Mundo Maya was already the area most visited by foreigners besides Mexico City (Jose & Rodriguez 1980). Through Mundo Maya, SECTUR hoped to cash in on the region's draw and funnel 20% of Mexico's foreign visitors to the Yucat&n alone (Alisan 1990). This, according to ministry projections (see SECTUR 1990), would amount to 2 million visitors per annum to the Cancun corridor by 1994. It is impossible to conceive of such a policy as being sustainable.  SECTUR plans to entice tourists visiting Cancun to spend at least two days in Merida and its environs (Alisan  1990).  - 83 -  Shortly after Ramos' policy announcement, SECTUR announced the  privately-funded  Megaprojects program (see Travel Weekly 04/25/91). This program called for the construction of Puerto Cancun by the end of the decade - which would have a marina, two golf courses, and the Mexican Caribbean's first polo fields - as well as the construction of an aquarium and theme park south of Cancun (Travel Weekly 11/12/90). SECTUR is in no uncertain terms counting on Mundo Maya to reinforce Cancun and area's competitiveness against other Caribbean beach destinations (SECTUR 1991 "F"). Many therefore remain sceptical of Mundo Maya efforts. Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer, for example, maintain that "There is a good case for stating that this same [megaproject] model of tourist development - but on an altogether vaster scale - is being contemplated for the whole Maya area" (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990: 12). The list of eleven slated megaprojects also included the Villas Archaeologicas at Palenque (Gaines 1990) . Similar developments operated by Club Med already 72  exist at Chichen-ltza, CobS, Uxmal, and Cholula (Sullivan 09/09/1991, 09/30/1991). If the megaproject approach to tourism development prevails, the resultant tourism will be a far cry from 'full fare'.  2.3 Conflicting Policies in Lacandon and Peten Rainforests  AT is favoured in development circles in part because it provides an economic argument against potentially more destructive land uses (Johnston 1991). In the case of Mundo Maya, analysis of conflicting policies casts doubt on this argument.  AT may serve more as a smokescreen for  'business as usual' than a promising departure (Faust 1993).  This approach can be contrasted to that of Costa Rica, where the government's emphasis on ecotourism has produced an accommodation sector were 85% of the hotels have less than fifty rooms (see Baez & Rovinski 1992).  - 84 -  The greatest threat to Mundo Maya comes from conflicting policies concerning the Lacanddn rainforest in Mexico and the Peten rainforest in Guatemala. These forests, though at the heart of Mundo Maya, are earmarked for an assortment of development projects that - as the antitheses to Mundo Maya - would preclude its existence. The Peten and Lacanddn have both undergone rampant deforestation in recent years (see Peerman 1985; Cohn 1989; Perera 1989; Bruns 1991). If indiscriminate clearing continues at present rates, the Peten will disappear within twenty-five years (Damsker et al. 1992; see Cohn 1989 and Perera 1989 as well) and the Lacanddn within five to ten years (Group of 100, 1989; see also Branigin 1990) . All that will remain of these great rainforests is desertic scrub (see Caulfield 1986; Chapin 73  1992; Damsker et al. 1992).  Environmental activists are alarmed by these figures owing to the  fundamental role that rainforests play in local, as well as global, biodiversity (Emory 1989) and hydrologic cycles (Perera 1989; Greenpeace 1991). The clearing of the Lacanddn and Peten often appears spontaneous and unplanned. Mexico and Guatemala, however, each have policies (discussed below) clearly articulating the future of this rainforest zone. Most of these policies stand in sharp contrast to the sustainable development rhetoric popular with politicians.  Regional planners continue to view jungle land as worthless unless it is  converted to pasture land or some other 'productive' use in the name of national economic development (Kurlansky 1985). As Gertrude Blom noted, in the Lacanddn "progress mainly means 74  destruction" (Peerman 1985).  l n the last fifty years the Lacanddn rainforest has been nearly 80% deforested (Peerman 1985; Bruns 1991). The Group of 100 (1989) and Branigin (1990) both maintain that the Lacandon suffers a higher rate of deforestation that the Amazon basin. 73  74  Gertrude Blom is an elderly Swiss woman who has lived in Chiapas for decades, helping the Lacandon  fight for the preservation of their homeland.  Maya  - 85 -  2.3 (a) Road Building  The destruction of Mesoamerican rainforests has been facilitated by ambitious road building campaigns. In 1984, as the northward flow of Guatemalan refugees grew, Mexico built a 278-mile highway through the Lacanddn to facilitate border patrol (Kurlansky 1985; Riding 1986; Group of 100,1989). This highway eased the road building efforts of regional lumber interests, opening the rainforest to logging and colonization (Peerman 1985). It set the stage for oil exploration and hydro-electric construction as well (Riding 1986). The future of the Lacanddn and Petdn is now uncertain.  2.3 (b) Colonization  The Mexican and Guatemalan governments sanction clearing of the Lacanddn and Petdn in order to defuse regional unrest. Colonization of the rainforest answers peasant claims for land (Nash & Sullivan 1992) whilst avoiding the explosive issue of land reform (Kurlansky 1985).  75  Mexico and Guatemala therefore both have incentives in place to  encourage campesinos driven from highland military zones by poverty and/or repression to set up jungle homesteads (Greenpeace 1991; Bryce 1992) . 76  Addressing regional unrest through resettlement programs has only created further problems. The jungle is not the vacant frontier that planners imagine. For centuries the Lacanddn and Petdn have been home to the lowland Maya, whose adaptive practices  75  S e e Gruson (1990), Berger (1991), and Weinberg (1991 "A") for discussion of land reform in the Mayan region.  Mexico launched Plan Chiapas in 1983 to quell growing unrest in its poorest state. An explicit part of Plan Chiapas was the relocation of displaced campesinos to the Lacandon rainforest (Peerman 1985). This was facilitated by a $900 million investment in new roads, schools, and health clinics (Riding 1986). Plan Chiapas itself was not a success, due to its band-aid approach to development. It was, nonetheless, an important precursor to Mundo Maya. Shortly after its implementation, Mexico announced an integrated development plan for the entire south-east, promising to improve living standard's in the country's poorest region (See Riding 1986: 425-426). 76  - 86 -  reflect rainforest ecology.  The influx of refugees, ladino immigrants, and indigenous  peoples of various ethnicities (see Bryce 1992; Nash & Sullivan 1992) has had dire consequences for locals. Explosive population growth coupled with unsuitable agricultural 77  practices has sped acculturation and disrupted the centuries-old ecological balance. 78  Ecological degradation carried out in the name of 'development' has held no benefit for the Maya. Environmental activists like Homero Aridjis of Mexico's Group of 100 have thus denounced ecocide as ethnocide (Darling 1991). Whether one is a Lacanddn Maya being inundated by ladino settlers, or a Tzotzil Maya [see Map 2] forced to resettle in a strange environment (see Nash & Sullivan 1992), no relief is found in colonization. The Maya are simply pawns in a development game benefitting those in power. Will government priorities and planner attitudes evolve enough under Mundo Maya to enable 'full fare' tourism to exist? Or will Mundo Maya be perverted in the name of the status quo?  C o h n (1989) and Scott (1992) estimate that 250 to 300 new settlers enter the Peten each day. This amounts to a 10% annual growth rate (Bryce 1992). The dangers of such a high growth rate have not manifested yet, as the area was just recently opened for official settlement (previously, the Peten was a hide-out for refugees and guerillas). Population growth in the Lacanddn; however, foreshadows what is to come. Since 1965, the population of the Lacanddn has jumped from 1,000 to over 200,000 (Group of 100, 1989). Newcomers have completely overwhelmed the remaining 400 Lacanddn Maya (Bruns 1991). 77  78  Settlers in the Lacanddn and Pefen have brought with them the temperate agricultural practices used in highland regions. These techniques are not transferrable to a rainforest setting. When the jungle is cleared to grow maize, nutrients are quickly leeched from the thin topsoil; crops will grow for one or two years and then the fields become barren (see Caulfield 1986; Kurlansky 1985; Group of 100,1988; Greenpeace 1991; Weinberg 1991 "A"; Chapin 1992; Damskeret al. 1992). Only when slash-and-burn is practised with long fallow periods and appropriate inter-cropping can agricultural production be sustained in the rainforest (see Moran 1981). Mounting population pressures and the absence of land reform now preclude adequate fallowing.  - 87 -  2.3 (c) Cattle Ranching  Colonization of the Lacanddn and Peten has made way for large-scale cattle ranching. When colonists abandon unproductive homesteads, ranchers reseed the clearcut land with forage grasses (see Kurlansky 1985; Peerman 1985; Caulfield 1986; Group of 100, 1989; Perera 1989; Weinberg 1991 "A") . Large herds of livestock graze the land for three to four years, whereupon the soil is irreversibly exhausted and new lands acquired. Cattle ranching, like colonization, is promoted in the Lacanddn and Peten through government incentives. The tropical beef industry is notoriously inefficient from a financial viewpoint (See Mahar 1979; Pearce 1993). Tax breaks and subsidies, however, enable ranchers to make enormous short-term profits (Kurlansky 1985; Clay 1992).  National  banks, in turn, acquire export dollars for debt repayment (Paxton 1989). The desertification of rainforest areas through cattle ranching is not only destroying Mundo Maya's premiere attraction; it impedes the conservation goals central to Mundo Maya.  2.3 (d) Oil Exploration  Mexico and Guatemala have each endorsed a sweetheart relationship between the oil industry and Mundo Maya, despite the well-documented problems associated oil production in Latin American rainforests . 79  Pdtroleos Mexicanos ("PEMEX") is a key  participant in the Tonina archaeological restoration project (SECTUR 1991 "B", SECTUR  79  In Ecuador's Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve, the trade-offs associated with oil production are not limited to toxic wastes. The presence of oil rigs in the rainforest offends ecotourists, threatening the very existence of alternative tourism (Brook 1993). The tension between the two industries promises to be even more pronounced in Mundo Maya, where archaeological sites are a major draw. Acid rain from PEMEX refineries is eating away at the ruins at Palenque, Chichen-ltza, Uxmal, and other Mayan sites in southern Mexico (The Oil Daily 1989).  - 88 -  1992).  Shell Exploration of Guatemala, meanwhile, is financing La Ruta Maya  Conservation Foundation's study of the Lake Izabal and Rio Dulce watershed (LRMCF 1993 "B"). Several international oil companies have won exploration concessions as well. In Guatemala, much of the area offered by the government for oil exploration lies within the Maya Biosphere Reserve (Bryce 1992).  2.3 (e) Hydro-electric Projects  Most alarming in view of Mundo Maya are the Mexican and Guatemalan governments' plans to dam the Usumacinta River . The negative socio-economic and 80  agro-ecological impacts associated with large-scale hydro-electric projects are well documented. The Benito Juarez and Proyecto Chicapa-Chimalapas dams in Mexico (see Blauert & Guidi 1992), and countless others in the Amazon Basin of South America (see Johnston 1990), have demonstrated the social and ecological follies of the modernization paradigm. Controversy over damming the Usumacinta is now more than a decade old. Mexico and Guatemala first discussed a joint dam project in 1980. Environmental protests and regional unrest delayed construction. Guatemala then pulled out of the negotiations in 1939 due to archaeological concerns related to Mundo Maya. Talk of damming the Usumacinta resurfaced in 1992. Although the Mexican government denied continued planning, feasibility studies have been leaked (Golden 1992). The revised plans were made public in 1992 two weeks after Salinas' well-publicized decree expanding the Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve. They called for the construction  80  The Usumacinta was a major artery of Mayan civilization. Two classical Mayan sites line its banks, Yaxchilan on the Mexican side and Piedras Negras on the Guatemalan side. It is Mexico's only major river to escape serious degradation and is considered crucial to Lacanddn ecology (Golden 1992).  - 89 -  of a 'limited' hydro-electric facility thirty-five kilometres north of the famous Piedras Negras archaeological site commencing 1994 (Perera 1992).  Guatemala, slated to purchase  electricity from Mexico, was a silent partner. Mexican environmentalists expect the announced dam to be the first of a series. They believe environmental considerations will become secondary as the demand for electricity increases (Perera 1992). Government feasibility studies confirm this. Financial projections show that only a series of dams would be economically viable (Golden 1992). As many as fifteen new dams are being contemplated (Kurlansky 1985; Group of 100, 1989).  Renewed discussions of a joint venture between Mexico and Guatemala suggest  another megaproject in the works. The Usumacinta dam poses a serious threat to the integrity of Mundo Maya. Critics consider it potentially "the most ecologically and culturally damaging project ever in Mexico and Central America" (Golden 1992: 14). It would destroy Piedras Negras and set off an ecological chain reaction "[sounding] the death knell not only for this magnificent wild river but for what remains of Guatemala's Maya Biosphere Reserve and Mexico's Lacanddn forest" (Perera 1992: 509). The inhabitants of the rainforest, including recent colonists, would be displaced.  Regional population pressures and hardship would  increase. If the Usumacinta project proceeds, Mundo Maya will lose all credibility. Planners cannot profess 'full fare' principles on one front and then flout them on the next without calling into question their true intentions.  - 90 -  2.4 Summary of Policies Threatening Mundo Maya  Each of the policies discussed above carries social and ecological costs incompatible with Mundo Maya. They facilitate debt repayment, but through high costs to local communities and utter disrespect for ecological thresholds. Profiteering occurs without any trickle down. Quick solutions to the complex socio-political issues seen in the Lacanddn and Peten will not be forthcoming. Over the last two decades, improved sanitary and medical conditions produced a population explosion (Vogt 1990). This, in the absence of land reform, made subsistence agriculture a privilege. Although jobs in road and dam construction have provided seasonal relief to the Maya (Vogt 1990), permanent jobs are few (Bryce 1992), and the finished products deny them a homeland. A new approach to regional development is needed. Mexico is perhaps closest to committing to an alternative like Mundo Maya. The environmental movement there has helped raise awareness of the nation's rich ecological and cultural heritage. Local activists battling megaproject development in the Lacanddn have found allies in urban environmental groups as Mexico's upper class adopts rainforest conservation as a cause (Group of 100, 1989; Blauert & Guidi 1992). They have also established effective links with high profile groups like Conservation International. Regional development policy has therefore undergone an important shift as conservation becomes politically correct. Saving the Lacanddn and Peten requires more than setting aside land as a park . Innovative 81  Parks play a critical role in tourism development. The WWF survey at airports in Mexico, Belize, and Costa Rica, revealed that over 50% of international tourists in those countries visit at least one national park (Kutay 1989 "B"). The majority of this tourism consists of day excursions for recreation (Boo 1990); a portion, nonetheless, qualifies as AT. Tourism, in turn, has proven pivotal in parks management. Ecotourism represents a way for parks to be self-sustaining (Rosote et al. 1990) and hence for LICs to maintain their natural resource base (King 1991). Tourists visiting regional parks spend an average of $199 USD/day on a two-week holiday compared to $104 USD/day by other tourists (Kutay 1989 "B"). In theory, this premium is allocated to parks maintenance (Garrett 1991), but in practice it generally is not (Boo 1990). In Mexico, entrance fees are non-existent, and revenues generated through concessions, parking, and ecolodges go to the federal coffer rather than regional conservation or economic development (see Boo 1990: 125). Ecuador apparently has a better system. The $560,000 USD generated yearly by Galapagos National Park helps maintain the country's 14 other national parks and reserves, which together earn only $40,000 per year (Lindberg 1991).  - 91 -  ecodevelopment programs that offer forest dwellers a supplement to traditional agriculture - or sustainable alternative to temperate mono-crop agriculture - must be implemented. Mundo Maya, through its network of biosphere reserves , makes way for such alternatives. These alternatives are 82  However, as evinced by the deteriorating state of the Galapagos, tourism there is far from 'full fare'. In recent years, ethical questions have arisen concerning parks expansion in LICs. Many academics and grassroots organizations consider parks.an imposition of foreign values and priorities (See Marsh 1987; Kaufman 1989; Barros 1992). The park concept, after all, arose from the North's 'non-utilitarian' approach (see Saremba & Gill 1991) to conservation (Britton 1987; Fennell & Eagles 1990). Locals are expected to forego traditional subsistence practices within park boundaries (Wallace 1991). AT supposedly provides displaced locals with compensatory opportunities (Alderman 1991). Many families, however, end up clearing and cultivating park lands in order to survive. This trend is evident at the Sumidero Canyon National Park in Mexico (Boo 1990). Locals banned from their traditional lands see foreign tourists and conservation biologists enjoying unrestricted access to them (Faust 1993). These concerns are now being resolved through the preference given by LICs to biosphere reserves (see next footnote) over parks. The prime role of parks in Mesoamerica, therefore, has probably been to attract foreign aid (see Marsh 1987). Several international development agencies and conservation NGOs on the rainforest crusade have deemed the region a target for high profile sustainable development projects and 'debt for nature' swaps (see Footnote 61) thanks to regional politicians' conservation-oriented public relations campaigns. Most of these organizations are now involved in the implementation of Mundo Maya. 82 The biosphere reserve concept, forwarded through UNESCO's Man & the Biosphere Program in 1976 (Emory 1989), grew out of LICs' frustration with the inappropriateness of parks for impoverished areas. Academics and park managers realized that conservation efforts could not proceed unless locals benefit through related sustainable development projects (Ashton 1991; Wallace 1991) on a community by community basis (Scott 1992). This new conservation model thus differentiated between uninhabited core zones - often a national park (Jones & Wersch 1990) and buffer zones, where human settlement and cultivation are allowed (see Batisse 1986; Emory 1989; Conservation International 1992 "C"). The emphasis on cooperation as opposed to expropriation (Darling 1992) has proven invaluable in winning local support for conservation (Tolba & El-Kholy 1992). Grassroots satisfaction is evident at the El Ramonal demonstration farm in the buffer zone of Mexico's Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve; three communities in the reserve have copied the El Ramonal system for sustainable cultivation (see Emory 1989; Boo 1990; Jones & Wersch 1990). While an array of ecodevelopment initiatives exists in Mesoamerican biosphere reserves, most of these projects involve an integrated approach (see Dixon et al. 1989) incorporating AT (see Chapter 9), According to Pedersen (1991), Wallace (1991), and Warner (1991), AT can be instrumental in securing locals' support for and participation in conservation. Locals benefit financially by offering tourist accommodation and services. This is evidently happening at the Sian Ka'an reserve (Emory 1989), though it is difficult to discern to what degree. The Mexican conservation NGO Amigos de Sian Ka'an directs the reserve's ecotourism program. The 15% profit derived from its all-inclusive price is split 3:2 between Amigos de Sian Ka'an and the reserve (Bezaury-Creel 1991). I was unable to determine what portion of the latter flows to host communities. Gray (1991) points out that indigenous communities confined to buffer zones are often unhappy with this situation. One reason is that the area allocated to them is often too small for traditional subsistence practices to be continued (SeilerBaldinger 1988).  - 92 -  practical solutions based on small-scale success stories elsewhere, that can be adapted to Mesoamerican needs if international support and local political will are in place. Mayan communities are already experimenting with different AT models (see Chapter 9). Mundo Maya, nonetheless, cannot succeed in isolation. Ecodevelopment zones ringed by oil rigs and hydro-electric dams may initially appeal to the less discerning 'alternative' tourist. Before long, however, the pollution of waterways etc. by incompatible industries will altogether kill the region's tourism potential.  Mundo Maya would die before getting an honest chance. Hence the need to  complement the program with compatible development strategies.  Mundo  Maya  has  great  potential to be 'full fare' if bolstered by complementary development strategies. If, on the other hand, it becomes a showpiece in the midst of continued exploitation, the program will fail. There is a point at which non-tourism developments like forestry clear-cuts and piles of mine tailings overshadow an area's tourism appeal (Butler & Waldbrook 1991).  Conclusion  Ashton (1992 "A") regards Mundo Maya as an excellent program, but warns that it needs strong leadership, commitment to cooperation, and a clear-cut regional action plan in order to succeed. Only the first two ingredients are presently in place. The future of Mundo Maya as a 'full fare' tourism program is uncertain due to the absence of a coherent regional action plan.  The pursuit of sectoral goals by member countries is causing  eco/archaeological damage and social upheaval that are inconsistent with Mundo Maya and threaten to undermine it. The success of Mundo Maya therefore rests on the establishment of consistent crosssectoral policies fostering sustainable development. A symbiotic approach to planning must replace the mutual exclusivity currently seen between tourism and other industries in places like the Lacanddn  - 93 -  and Peten. Such an approach is rare, especially at the macro level; however, this does not mean it should not be aspired to. The uncertainty surrounding the direction that Mundo Maya will take is compounded by upcoming elections. Mexican president Salinas and Guatemalan president Cerezo have each been strong figureheads for Mundo Maya, the latter publicly stating that he planned to dedicate himself to the promotion of regional ecotourism after his retirement (Perera 1989). However, Guatemala has a new president - Jose Serrano - and Mexico is at the brink of a tumultuous election. It remains to be seen if this change in guard will derail Mundo Maya. In any event, what is required is probably not additional law making, but an end to law breaking. The legislative framework for the conservation and community development goals expressed in Mundo Maya appears to be in place already. But continued transgression of park and biosphere reserve boundaries and of human rights nullifies what exists on paper. 83  Continuity in regional politics over the last few decades suggests little change in policy, be it related to Mundo Maya or other development avenues . Member countries, left to their own devices, 84  will probably continue trying to implement Mundo Maya alongside hydro-electric dams and oil rigs. Only with international support (e.g. constructive foreign aid) will they be able to search for more compatible development strategies that make 'full fare' tourism possible, and the principles underlying it a precedent for future development policy rather than an exception.  83  A survey of regional biosphere reserves exemplifies this point. In Honduras, for instance, the southern end of the Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve was logged. La Amistad Biosphere Reserve, meanwhile, harbours 50% of the country's hydro-electric generating potential (Olson, reference unknown). 84  Each member country of Mundo Maya is a 'democratic' nation. All but Belize, however, are notorious for having rigged elections and coups that keep the political right in power. In Mexico, power has passed from PRI (Partido Revolucionario Institutional) candidate to PRI candidate. The election of a civilian government in Guatemala, meanwhile, is merely illusory; no candidate remains in office without military backing. These countries, as a result, do not undergo major shifts in policy term to term.  - 94 -  Chapter 6: MARKETING MUNDO MAYA  Introduction At this early stage of Whether  Mundo Maya,  Mundo Maya manifests as  the most critical policy to analyze is that of marketing.  'full fare' tourism depends largely on the marketing approach taken.  T h e timing and targeting of O M M marketing campaigns, coupled with the images and messages relayed by official promotional materials, will dictate not only the number and types of tourists arriving but how prepared host communities are for their visit.  The degree of participation granted these  communities, meanwhile, will dictate locals' share in profits and other benefits. efforts for  Mundo Maya  Marketing  were in full gear shortly after the program had been endorsed. International  attention first focused on the region in 1990 with the release of Guatemala: Loom of the Rainbow . 85  This set the stage for  Eurobolsa  66  profile ITB Trade Fair in Berlin.  in 1991. The next year, the O M M marketed  the high  By 1993 the marketplace was familiar enough with the program for  Guatemala to host the first exclusive  Mundo Maya trade  fare. This, like  Eurobolsa,  to popular ecotour destinations . The subsequent publicity of such sites put 87  Mundo Maya at  included press trips  Mundo Maya  on the A T  map.  85  Guatemala: Loom of the Rainbow, a promotional film produced by INGUAT, won second place out of 155 entries at the Sixth International Tourism Film Festival in Montecatini, Italy. Delegates from 32 countries were present to witness its 'motivating effect and breathtaking' landscapes (Americas staff writer 1990). T h e 1991 Eurobolsa was Mexico's first travel trade show concentrating on the European market. It featured Mundo Maya alongside other newly created Mexican ecotourism circuits (Sullivan 09/16/91). Member countries collaborated through the OMM on a joint display, but also had individual booths featuring their own Mundo Maya circuits. 86  87  SECTUR organized various one and two-day trips within Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras for European travel writers attending the 1991 Eurobolsa (SECTUR 1992). INGUAT followed suit at the 1993 Mundo Maya trade fare; invited journalists were taken on a four-hour bus trip to see the natural limestone bridge and pools at Semuc Champey (Leibman 1993).  - 95 -  I. The Alternative Tourist 1.1 Definition & Discussion of Alternative Tourists Mundo  specifically targets alternative tourists. Alternative tourists tend to be university  Maya  or college-educated , well-travelled, upper-income individuals or couples (EIU 1989; Foster 1985; 88  89  Hansen 1990; Blum 1991; Lindsay 1991). Most are professionals or business executives of "the socalled yuppie generation... [particularly] the DINK [double income, no kids] subdivision of the yuppie cycle... and the 50-70 age category" (Frommer 1991: 71). These people prefer to travel in small groups (Read 1980) or, if possible, on an individual program (Kosters 1988). They often incorporate physical activities such as hiking, trekking, cycling, or kayaking into their cultural and/or nature pursuits (Williams 1991) . 90  Differences in opinion exist regarding what constitutes the truly alternative tourist . In reality, 91  the hardcore alternative tourist is a rarity (Munn 1988). Most alternative tourists participate in varying shades of alternative and mass tourism over time. Some jump categories holiday to holiday (Woodside  S8  O n e third of Canadian visitors to Costa Rica hold graduate degrees (Fennell & Smale 1992).  89  Fennell & Smale (1992) list the average household income of Canadian tourists visiting Costa Rica at $70,000 CDN per annum. Other studies suggest an average household income of $56,000 CDN among this group (Fennell & Eagles 1990). Either way, this figure stands well above the $21,287 CDN average Canadian household income (see same articles). 90  According to Ingram & Durst (1989), 72% of formally organized alternative tours involve hiking and 66% involve other nature-based activities. 91  There are even more distinctions made between types of alternative tourists than between categories of AT. Several alternative tourist typologies exist, defined by the experiences, activity levels, and amenity values sought (Combrink 1991). These range from Redfoot's (1984) and Murphy's (1991) typology based on the level of cultural authenticity sought to Valentine's (1990) typology based on the degree of emphasis placed on nature. Others, like Lindberg's (1991) classification of 'hard-core,' 'dedicated,' 'mainstream,' and 'casual,' ecotourists are more comprehensive in the criteria applied, assessing both cultural and ecological facets of their trip. The best known, nevertheless, remains Erik Cohen's typology from the 1970s (see Snepenger 1987). Cohen's 'explorer' and drifter' profiles closely resemble recent descriptions of the more serious alternative tourist.  - 96 -  & Carr 1988); others cross those boundaries within a single trip (Travel Weekly 07/22/91), concluding their ecotour with a week in Cancun . 92  None of the tourist typologies developed, therefore, can be applied without caveats. As Yee (1992) noted, "The lines of demarcation are not clear and the groups often overlap" (Yee 1992: 17). Some scholars, in fact, find the usefulness of tourist typologies to be limited.  Bruner (1991), for  example, maintains that "these distinctions are more in the minds of tourists, and... scholars of tourism, than in the reality of the touristic encounter... from the native perspective, a self-declared traveller is simply another variety of foreign visitor (i.e. tourist). The sites visited, the performances witnessed, and the nature of the total experience may be very similar for tourists and for those 'travellers' who ostensibly detest tourism" (Bruner 1991: 247). Consumers themselves, nevertheless, are fond of the term 'alternative' or 'ecotourist' (Bruner 1991). These labels distinguish an elite form of travel. Older 'package' tourists pride themselves for the high price paid (Merschen 1992) and number of exotic sites seen (Graburn 1989). Younger 'do it yourself tourists, meanwhile, derive status from how far their money can stretch (Cohen 1989 "A"; Graburn 1989) and the intensity of their contact with locals (Vogt 1978).  Increasingly, AT is  viewed in the marketplace as a highly elite form of travel. Tour companies and host countries alike are mesmerized by the profits represented by the high-end alternative tourist . Alternative tour companies 93  92 Industry statistics on the degree of cross-over between alternative and mass tourism are lacking. The PATA Intelligence Centre surveyed North American ecotour operators in 1992 and found that 58% of the 24 respondents derive 90-100% of their income from ecotours; 20% derive 50-85%, and 8% derive less than 50% (Yee 1992). These statistics, preliminary in nature, mask the complexity of the issue. They pertain to corporate profits only. There is no indication of what percentage of ecotours incorporate mass tourism elements (e.g. a stopover in Cancun or accommodation at a Club Med archaeological villa). Nor is there a matching study of mainstream companies deriving a portion of their income from ecotours. Nearly every 'fun and sun' company operating in the Mayan region now offers cultural and archaeological excursions. Nearly 50% of the AT market does not consider price a major factor in its holiday decisions (Frommer 1991); they are pre-occupied with promised activities and experiences instead (Wahab et al. 1976). As Richard Bangs of Sobek Expeditions puts it, "Cost is not normally a factor... what they are looking for is an overwhelming experience" (Muqbil 1990: 52). Alternative tourists generally seek the 'trip of a lifetime' (Marsh 1986). Those with above average incomes are both willing and able to pay for it (Cazes 1989). 93  - 97 -  cannot capture the young 'explorer' market, as this segment tends to be self-sufficient and shun traditional tourism services (see Vogt 1978). Host countries, meanwhile, tend to discount this group as a worthwhile market segment because they reap more from mass tourists (see Snepenger 1987). Hence "one might argue that at the root of much of what is being proposed as alternative tourism is really a disguised class prejudice. Large numbers of middle and lower class [i.e. mass] tourists are not welcome, nor are 'hippies' in any number, but small numbers of affluent, well educated and well behaved tourists are welcome" (Butler 1990: 42).  1.2. Management Implications for Mundo Maya Debate continues as to whether alternative tourists as a group are any more thoughtful than mass tourists about the impacts of their presence on the host community. According to Linda Cousins, manager of Blyth & Company's adventure tours division, "the clients who go on their rainforest excursions tend to be well-educated... but aren't necessarily avid environmentalists" (Hansen 1990: 73). Increasing evidence, however, suggests heightened cultural and ecological sensitivity among this group. Fennell & Smale (1992) found that Canadian ecotourists visiting Costa Rica "seek the types of attractions and benefits that are strikingly consistent with the basic principles [of alternative tourism]" (Fennell & Smale 1992: 28). Warner (1991: 42) reported similar findings, describing alternative tourists as "typically more careful about their environmental impact than the average tourist". Concerns about the potential impacts of AT stem largely from demographic differences between guest and host. Alternative tourists, regardless of travel style, share a common base: "Bourgeois touring and maverick travelling both spring from the gringo lap of luxury" (Shacochis 1989: 42). AT hosts, in contrast, are ideally the poorest of the poor, i.e. those least likely to partake in any 'trickle down'. Tourists thus represent the 'haves' and host communities the 'have nots' (Callimanopulos 1982; Nunez 1989). This paradox, and the power differential inherent to it, open the way for exploitation.  - 98 -  Only if a knowledgeable and respectful tour guide is present to educate visitors about their potential impacts and act as an intermediary can the A T in question be 'full fare' . 94  Tour guides  mediate between tourists and the host community/environment (Fennell & Eagles 1990), lessening negative visitation impacts through their choice(s) of individuals and services to patronize and places to visit (Schmidt 1979; Baez & Rovinski 1992). They convey the message that "To travel responsibly requires that you realize that the actions you take during your stay in Latin America will continue to affect the lives of the locals and their environment long after you have gone" (Graham 1990: 23). vigilance can enhance positive impacts as well . 95  This  Tourists sensitized by their guide to the political  realities of the host area can better differentiate between producers and middlemen (see Wright 1990: 98), the locally owned as opposed to foreign-owned, etcetera.  The host community thereby captures  a larger share of A T profits. One of the primary challenges in implementing 'full fare' tourism in Mundo Maya is how to educate independent travellers. A s seen in Nepal, the incremental impacts of solitary trekkers can be staggering (Kutay 1989 "A"). Much of A T in Mesoamerica is by 'do it yourselfers' who take the family  T h e critical role played by tour operators is evident in Nepal: "While trekking groups are increasingly well prepared and self-sufficient, it is the individual trekkers - who outnumber group participants two to one - who impose more demands on the generous hospitality and scarce resources of the Nepali people" (Kutay 1989 "A": 33). y4  Several LICs building AT industries have realized in retrospect the indispensable role that properly trained guides play in sustaining tourism over the long-term. Ecuador now requires that all visitors to the Galapagos be accompanied by guides licensed by the Parks Service (Kutay 1989 "A"). Brazil has similar regulations for Amazonia, requiring all tour company and staff to be intensively trained and tested before licensing (Harrington 1991).  The present effectiveness of guiding in the AT industry is questionable. Guiding is not mandatory unless legislated by the host country. Guiding practices, moreover, vary widely (Epler Wood 1992). At this point, the quantity and quality of ecological interpretation far exceeds that of cultural interpretation. Only 16% of the 24 ecotour operators surveyed by the PATA Intelligence Centre in 1992 had anthropologists on staff; this contrasts sharply to the 75% reporting professional ecologists, naturalists, and other experts in the physical sciences as guides (Yee 1992). Butler & Waldbrook (1991) maintain that most nature tour operators, by virtue of their own self-interest in the destination, display a high degree of environmental awareness. The recent Ecotourism Society survey of American outbound operators, however, contradicts this view. A startling 63% of the 43 survey respondents "felt no responsibility to train local [ground] operators to maintain conservation standards" (Epler Wood 1992: 6).  - 99 -  car (Blum 1991) or local buses (Lougheed 1988). In Belize, for instance, only one fifth of tourists arrive on inclusive tour packages (Boo 1990). The rest travel by their own means, go to the core of societies in small towns and villages, and typically demand a hamburger instead of black beans (Toriello 1992 "B"). In these circumstances, where no intermediary is present, the onus of regulation falls on the host government (Lindberg 1991; Boo 1992 "A"). Locals, on their own or in conjunction with their national tourism ministry and/or supporting N G O s must provide the high quality information on local social customs and ecology sought by alternative tourists  96  (see Valentine  1990) plus quotas and effective  monitoring at popular sites (see Wood 1993).  II. Narrowing the Target Market of Mundo Maya 2.1 European Alternative Tourists  Mundo Maya marketing  is focused on Europe. The O M M identified Germany, Italy, and France  as primary markets for Mundo Maya ( O M M 1991). European publicity firms to promote  Mundo Maya  S E C T U R , on its own accord, contracted two in Germany and Spain ( S E C T U R 1992) .  Europeans now constitute the fastest growing segment of Mundo  97  Maya  (Toriello 1992 "B").  Europeans are the visitor group most interested in Mundo Maya ( S E C T U R 1991 "D"). This is illustrated well in Mexico, where 60% of European arrivals go directly to the south-east ( S E C T U R 1990).  In 1989, though they represented only 2.5% of total incoming tourism, Europeans accounted  Surveys by the WWF have shown that nature tourists (and presumably other alternative tourists) typically want more educational material than is currently available at most AT sites (Lindberg 1991). Even Costa Rica is lagging behind in the provision of such material; there are'few interpretive trail, visitor centres, or other educational/management services in place (Epler Wood 1993). 96  T h e European marketing campaigns undertaken by the OMM and SECTUR were a direct response to decreasing European arrivals post-1982 (SECTUR 1990). Bargain basement charters and packages originating in North America had not only proven unprofitable (see Section 1.2 of Chapter 3), but carved a gringo image for Cancun and area. Enticing European tourists back to the region thus required a total re-characterization of its attractions. Mundo Maya promotional literature, through its emphasis on cultural, archaeological, and ecological sites, was designed to achieve this. 97  - 100 -  for 45.5% of cultural tourism in Mexico's Mayan zone ( S E C T U R 1990).  Europeans predominate at  ecological attractions as well. In Mexico's Sumidero National park, they comprise 65% of international visitors (Boo 1990). T h e European market is strategically important for  Mundo Maya.  Europeans are not only less  phased than Americans by regional unrest (Harris 1986; Toriello 1992 "B") but have a comparatively high rate of return to the a r e a  98  ( S E C T U R 1991 "A").  These traits make them a more dependable  source foreign exchange. The European market, furthermore, is cheaper for to develop and service.  Mundo Maya  countries  Europeans, less concerned than Americans about convenience and luxury  (Bruns 1991), can be accommodated by existing infrastructure  99  ( S E C T U R 1990; O M M 1991).  As  Toriello (1992 "B") noted, "They are intent on buying local culture not a bed. They do not demand that everything be air conditioned." Less investment on the part of the public and private sectors is required to woo them. Interestingly,  the O M M ' s focus on Europeans may force it to become a diligent steward.  Returning tourists tend to be less tolerant than first-timers of ecological and/or cultural decay.  According to SECTUR (1991 "A"), 16.5% of Europeans visiting Mexico's Mayan zone return a second time and 11.1% visit three or more times. Research by Combrink (1990) demonstrating nature tourists' high propensity to return to a destination suggests that those interested in the ecology of past and present Maya culture are most likely to return. Americans attracted to megaproject developments along regional beaches are more fickle, choosing between many similar destinations in Hawaii and the Caribbean. So too are trendier specialty tourists seeking a 'once in a lifetime' experience (see Snepenger 1987; Combrink 1990; Williams 1991). 98  99  As of 1989, only 29% of rooms in the Mexican portion of Mundo Maya were four-star, i.e. tourist class, or above. The remaining 71% were three-star or less (SECTUR 1990). The building binge in Cancun would have since modified these figures along the beach strip. Inland areas at the heart of Mundo Maya, however, would have an even higher proportion of low-end hotels than these figures suggest.  - 101 -  2.2 American Mass Tourists The O M M has not discounted the American market for Mundo  Maya  100  .  In 1990, Mexico  intensified its marketing of regional archaeology and culture in the United States (Foltz 1990; Travel Weekly 04/25/91). T h e next year Guatemala launched an American campaign of its own (Marino 1991 "C"). The American market's size and proximity have made it an important stand-by. While Maya  Mundo  planners expect Europeans to displace Americans in the near future (Toriello 1992 "B"), the  United States is currently a major supplier.  Americans account for 82% of foreign tourists visiting  Mexico ( S E C T U R 1991 "A"). Many are drawn to the Yucatan  portion of Mundo  Maya  since it is only  a two-hour flight from Miami (Southworth 1989). Through an oversimplification of tourist behaviour mass tourists in the region are generally perceived as being American.  Americans' predominance in Cancun and at heavily commercialized  archaeological sites around Cancun ( S E C T U R 1990) has earned them this reputation.  Their low  visitation in less travelled countries like Belize and propensity to buy inclusive tour packages to such 'exotic' destinations only strengthen the stereotype (Boo 1990). Europeans, in contrast, seem to have been idealized. In reality, alternative tourists are better defined by behaviour than nationality. Europe may have a higher concentration of cultural tourists than the United States; however, it is folly to assume on this basis that Europeans as a group constitute a preferred tourist type. Nowhere is this better exemplified than in the Amazon Basin. Europeans account for 65% of "ecotourism' there, yet 64% of total visitation is actually mass tourism (Ruschmann 1992).  This cross-over points to more than a few European  mass tourists.  Canada is not a significant market for Mundo Maya. Canadians account for a larger share (4.6%) of the Mexican tourist market than Europeans (4.3%) (Waters 1988). But Canadians tend to congregate at beach destinations like Cancun. They are generally not culture seekers like Europeans. 100  - 102 -  The O M M is targeting a larger segment of the mass tourist market than official rhetoric suggests.  This should draw as much scrutiny as its alleged preference for cultural tourists draws  praise. Pursuing the former will cancel out any benefits associated with the latter, for mass tourists in Tilley gear will outnumber genuine alternative tourists ten to one.  2.3 Cultural Tourists: The Alleged Target Market Mundo "F").  Maya was designed to increase cultural tourism in the region ( S E C T U R 1991 "A" and  Statistics compiled by S E C T U R show cultural tourists to be a minority .  This segment of the  101  alternative tour market, nonetheless, has great financial clout ( S E C T U R 1990; S E C T U R 1991 "A"). Cultural tourists spend more upon arrival than nature tourists  102  (Snepenger 1987; Wallace et al. 1990).  From a financial and community development viewpoint they are the most desirable type of tourist to attract. The O M M ' s focus on attracting Europeans follows extensive market research. Regional visitor statistics suggest Europeans are more inclined than Americans to participate in archaeology and other cultural pursuits (see S E C T U R 1990). Cultural attractions are central rather than incidental to their trip. They therefore congregate in Villahermosa  and M&rida as opposed to C a n c u n  103  .  '"'Only 10% of tourists visiting Mexico at large are cultural tourists (SECTUR 1991 "B"). 102  According to the WWF, nature tourists spend an average of $90 USD/day more than other tourists (Ruggia 1991). Valentine (1990) points out that while nature tourists are known to spend more, the extra expenditure is often in high leakage areas. They spend a large proportion of their travel budget on pre-departure purchases like specialized outdoors wear, backpacks, and cameras (Marsh 1986). If their trip is adventure-oriented (e.g. rafting down the Usumacinta) or involves camping (e.g. Victor Emanuel Nature Tours' 'birding' expedition in El Triunfo cloud forest reserve in Chiapas), meals tend to be freeze-dried preparations from the United States (Paxton 1989; see also Slickrock Adventures 1992 brochure). Cultural tourists, on the other hand, like to eat local food (Dodd 1991) and buy locally made handicrafts (Sinclair 1984). Host communities thus benefit more from their presence. Villahermosa and Merida are the lesser known gateways to Mexico's Mundo Maya. The principal archaeological circuits outside the Cancun-Tulum corridor consist of Villahermosa-Palenque-San Cristdbal de las Casas and MeridaUxmal-Chichen Itza (SECTUR 1990). 103  - 103 -  European cultural tourists, true to profile, comprise a small but affluent market segment ( S E C T U R 1990). A s long haul tourists they are less price conscious than Americans (Jenkins 1980 "A"). Their interest in cultural elements, moreover, brings higher handicraft sales (Toriello 1992 "B"). All in all they spend more than twice as much per person while visiting  Mundo Maya  as Americans  ( S E C T U R 1991 "A"). At first glance, the benefits derived from cultural tourists are great.  Their spending pattern  theoretically offers maximum returns from minimal tourist traffic. This, according to Firat (1989), is key to a successful tourism strategy for LICs.  Archaeological buffs interested in restoration and  conservationists seeking green capital promote A T on this premise. T h e profit maximisation rationale, however, falls short on a 'full fare' scale. It predicates the old 'trickle down' theory whilst, ignoring equity concerns of host communities. perspective, 10  quetzales  From a 'full fare'  spent at the weaving cooperative run by civil war widows goes further than  the fee paid to the foreign guide showing tourists the indigenous shrine of  Turqua . A0A  Benefits cannot  be assessed by quantitative criteria alone. Serious cultural tourists, nevertheless, are reputed to be more discerning consumers. They patronize host community establishments and services, spreading the commercial benefits of tourism more equitably through the community (Toriello 1992 "B"). Their interactions with local people and the environment, meanwhile, tend to be characterized by respect as opposed to arrogance (Toriello 1992 "B"). Relations with the host community thus have the potential to be positive rather than exploitative. Increased visitation by cultural tourists therefore may promote 'full fare' tourism in  Mundo Maya.  T h e outcome depends on whether policies are applied consistently. It is futile to cultivate the cultural  T h e shrine of Turqa', also called Pascual Abaj, is located on a mountain ridge a quarter mile south of Chichicastenango (Greenberg & Wells 1990). It consists of a carved stone figure surrounded on three sides by unadorned stones, with an incense-burning platform in the middle. Local Maya perform curing ceremonies, fertility rites, and other rituals at the site. It is popular with tourists because of the chicken sacrifice frequently performed there (Glassman 1990). I 0 4  - 104 -  tourist market for more sensitive sites if mass tourists are courted alongside them. It is equally vain if equity and participation are not addressed; increased revenues would simply continue to accrue to those in power.  2.4 Archaeological Tourists: The Real Target Market  The question is whether the OMM actually wants to attract cultural tourists. Alternative tourists generally pursue what they perceive as an 'authentic' experience. When culture is the focal point of the trip, they seek direct contact with the host community (Wahab et al. 1976), including accommodation with a local family if possible (Cazes 1989). Cultural tourists want to learn firsthand "about the history and heritage of indigenous people, as well as about their contemporary ways of life and even their ways of thinking" (James MacGregor, in Sinclair 1984: page unknown). Cultural tourists, by implication, tend to be more aware of social issues in the host region. Their penchant for understanding the everyday reality of host communities may lead them to ask questions that would not occur to other tourists. In Mundo Maya this questioning could turn to human rights. Cultural tourists constitute the visitor group most likely to be aware of and act upon regional human rights abuses. Cultural tourists, as a potential constituency for human rights advocacy , pose a threat to the 105  status quo. Linkages made with grassroots organizations during their travels would not be appreciated by regional power brokers. Nor would heightened international surveillance. Mundo Maya promoters presumably want hassle-free tourism revenues.  Constituency building is one of the benefits associated with alternative tourism. This is the process whereby personal encounters with local people and issues turn visitors into supporters (Muqbil 1990; Wallace et al. 1990). It can lead to political action and/or donations (King 1991), particularly when interpretive programs are available. Interpretive programs tend to instill greater appreciation among visitors for indigenous issues such as land claims and traditional adaptive strategies (Kevan Tisshaw, in Sinclair 1984).  - 105 -  T h e real target market, therefore, is not cultural tourists but the archaeological sub-segment of cultural tourism. Archaeological enthusiasts are drawn by historical rather than contemporary Maya culture, and often do not make a link between the two (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990).  They are  consequently much less likely than cultural tourists per se to meddle where issues like human rights are concerned.  S E C T U R ' s efforts to encourage tour operators and wholesaler to develop more  programs around archaeology (see Travel Weekly 12/5/91) - when the cultural mosaic includes much more than 'stones and bones' - support this hypothesis. The O M M ' s allegiance to cultural tourism must be interpreted in this context. T h e labelling of  Mundo Maya  as a cultural tourism program is at present insidiously misleading. The romanticization  of everything indigenous in program literature is the cultural icing for a chiefly archaeological cake.  It  will remain so until the accompanying rhetoric about community participation is acted upon. Cultural tourism can hardly exist if locals are denied the opportunity to present their own culture on realistic terms. The same, of course, can be said for 'full fare' tourism in general.  Conclusion Industry and consumer awareness about  Mundo Maya  increased dramatically as a result of  the O M M ' s aggressive marketing. Ironically, this served to undermine rather than further goals.  Mundo Maya  Tourists began to arrive before a management apparatus was in place (Fonseca 1989).  Problems similar to those seen in other prematurely marketed A T destinations like the Amazon Basin (see Harrington 1991) were thus quick to surface (Toriello 1992 "B"). T h e rate at which  Mundo Maya  development communities.  marketing proceeded is causing alarm in the conservation and  Substantive issues like carrying capacity, infrastructure needs, and  monitoring mechanisms have not been thoroughly addressed; nor has community participation. If these matters are not soon reconciled the potential for 'full fare' tourism in  Mundo Maya will  be lost. A s G o  - 106 -  (1989) observed, "Destination areas that develop tourism along the conventional marketing approach stand to lose their uniqueness, heritage, and natural resources" (Go 1989:  Mundo Maya  168).  planners are not blind to the precarious situation the program now sits in.  On  October 14, 1992 Guatemala's National Ecotourism Committee met to formulate a short-term action plan to minimize the negative impacts associated with tactics, however, will not bring  Mundo Maya  Mundo M a y a  back on track.  1 0 6  (Toriello 1992 "B").  Band-aid  Only a significant departure from present  planning and marketing practices can achieve that. For  Mundo Maya to  be embraced in its totality.  be "full fare' and succeed as a regional development tool, the concept must  Mundo Maya  is like a clock; its value is not in the face that it is recognized  by but the workings that lie behind it. Once the clock face is separated from the mechanisms giving it life, it ceases to be a clock. Any manufacturer attempting to flog the face alone would be guilty of fraud.  Mundo Maya  will not evolve as a 'full fare' tourism program unless marketed as one.  New  marketing approaches have emerged to aid in the translation of A T theory into practice. Go's (1989) 'societal' marketing and Ashworth & Goodall's (1988) 'socially responsible' marketing, for instance, both build the long-term interests of the host community into the notion of profit.  "Full fare' A T is possible  when equity and community participation proceed hand in hand.  Mundo Maya concept.  planners researched A T sufficiently to launch a program tailored around the  All the right buzzword arise in program conceptual documents (see O M M 1992 "A", "C").  They therefore understand what constitutes 'full fare' A T and how to implement it. All that remains now  Mundo Maya is not the only AT destination to undertake remedial as opposed to proactive tourism planning (see de Kadt 1979). Few LICs have management plans for tourism (Ashton 1992 "A"). Ecuador did not formulate a comprehensive plan for the protection of the Galapagos until 1989 (Smith 1990/91). Brazil did not institute ecotour operator standards for the Amazon Basin until 1991 (Harrington 1991).  - 107 -  is for them to overcome their personal and professional prejudices regarding grassroots organizations' and indigenous peoples' roles in the planning process in order to bring Mundo  Maya to life.  - 108 -  Chapter 7: PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS  Introduction Mundo Maya literature.  is still too new a program to be analyzed to any significant extent in industry  For this reason, I have focused on program brochures as a window to policy. Brochures  provide reliable clues to the actual practice of A T in the case study area. T h e first batch of brochures analyzed are the official pamphlets issued by the O M M , S E C T U R , and INGUAT.  These, when analyzed against the concepts and goals expressed in official planning  documents, reveal potential inconsistencies between the theory and practice of A T in  Mundo Maya.  It is important to identify this gap, as the public sector brochures are what guide private sector product offerings. T h e second set of brochures analyzed consists of private sector pamphlets. private sector that implements A T theory in the field . 107  vivid picture of what is unfolding.  It is chiefly the  Reviewing corporate brochures thus gives a  One can discern everything from corporate ethics to guiding  standards. T o deal with the variety of corporate brochures available on A T in them into six categories.  Mundo Maya,  I classified  These categories - 'smorgasbord,' 'high-end study,' 'action,' 'concerned  citizens,' 'committed citizens,' and 'volunteer' - were arrived at by weighing corporate rhetoric against corporate practice. Compiling each category's 'words versus deeds' in a table clarified different market trends. It quickly became apparent that demand-side (or market driven) A T (the impacts of which are discussed in the next chapter) is very rarely 'full fare'.  Certain host communities and NGOs are experimenting with AT as a community development tool (see Chapter 9); however, standard ecotours have more visibility on the marketplace and therefore account for most AT traffic.  - 109 -  I. Public Sector Brochures 1.1 SECTUR Brochures Brochures on the Mexican portion of  Mundo Maya, while  graphically impressive, are thoroughly  lacking in content indicative of a 'full fare' approach to tourism. The 1991 booklet entitled "Mexico: El  Mundo Maya" culture.  ( S E C T U R 1991 "F") claims to offer tourists an 'integral' vision of Mayan history and  While it is replete with archaeological photographs, not a single photo or portion of the text  makes reference to the living Maya. The only people to appear in this brochure are tourists in Cancun. The 1993 booklet of the same title ( S E C T U R 1993 "A") conveys essentially the same message. However, this updated version now refers to the ancient Maya only. contemporary  Maya culture  is gone, confirming the  The pretence of including  hypothesis (discussed last chapter)  archaeological tourists constituting the real target market of  about  Mundo Maya.  The brochure entitled "Mexico: Mayan World" ( S E C T U R 1991 "G") follows suit. Archaeological and ecological attractions are removed from their present human context.  The only photographs  actually featuring people are again those of mainstream tourists. The token reference to the presentday Maya refers only to their colourful dress.  1.2 INGUAT Brochures  Mundo Maya  brochures produced by Guatemala differ markedly from those of Mexico.  The  text tends to be more detailed, noting not only points of ecological and archaeological significance, but different Mayan ethnic groups and dialects as well (INGUAT 1991 "A" and "C").  The living Maya,  moreover, figure prominently in photos . 108  Guatemala, according to the OMM (1992 "B"), retains the largest population of Maya origin in the region. Approximately 60% of Guatemala's population is indigenous (INGUAT 1991 "C").  - 110 -  Guatemala's showcasing of the 'living heritage' of the Maya (INGUAT 1991 misleading. INGUAT brochures celebrate the highland Maya when in reality Guatemala's program concentrates on the  Peten.  "B") is quite  Mundo Maya  This manipulation of facts facilitates a marketing program based  on the country's 'colourful and friendly' people (INGUAT 1991 "A", "E"). But the stature of Guatemala's Maya in  Mundo Maya Deeper  thus far is hardly consistent with the image projected.  analysis shows Guatemala's  marketing  thrust to be very  similar to Mexico's.  Photographs of contemporary Maya life are included in brochures for market positioning only.  The  product offering, less the beach component, is the same: archaeology and ecology (INGUAT 1991 "B" and "C"), with recreation as a supplement (INGUAT 1991 "A" and "E"). Handicraft shopping is the only 'cultural' facet emphasized (INGUAT 1991 "A", "C", "D", and "E"). This hardly qualifies the program as cultural or 'full fare' tourism. INGUAT, like S E C T U R , patronizes the living Maya. Guatemalan brochures, though pseudoethnographical in tone (INGUAT 1991 "A"; INGUAT 1991 " C " )  109  , portray them as quaint artisans living  in a timeless world. Only their colourful dress and friendliness is praised  110  .  109  Cohen (1989 "B") points out that it is not uncommon for AT brochures to entirely misrepresent and sensationalize the host culture while seeming reliable because of their 'pseudo ethnographic' tone. Such discourse "may appear to be simplistic overgeneralizations, but they organize and give meaning to the tourist encounter for both the tourist and the native" (Bruner 1991: 240; see also Dann 1991). The tourist is offered "nothing less than a total transformation of self... [while] nothing whatsoever happens to the native object... is frozen in time, immobile, and apparently incapable of learning and changing (Bruner 1991: 239-240). 110  T h i s contrasts sharply to the mathematics, calendars etc. elaborated upon in relation to the ancient Maya (see  INGUAT 1991 "C" and "E"). Reverence for the Mayan past is non-threatening to the status quo.  - Ill -  1.3 OMM Brochures  Mundo Maya  brochures produced by the O M M  better reflect the 'low impact' principles  1 1 1  espoused in program literature. Ecotourism is the focus. Careful scrutiny, nevertheless, is still in order; fancy graphics and well placed buzzwords can create a false image. a type of tourism in character with that outlined in program The brochure entitled  "Mundo Maya: A  Not all O M M brochures depict  Mundo Maya  conceptual documents.  New Tourist Destination in the Sweet Waist of America'  (OMM 1992 "B"), prepared with financial and technical assistance from the E E C , far surpasses those created by S E C T U R and INGUAT.  "Mundo Maya Mundo Maya  It invites the 'true traveller,' noting that:  is a different type of tourism. invites you to enjoy learning.  Mundo Maya is an act of respect to communities, nature and history.  Mundo Maya  is the thrill of travelling, not just a change of scenery" (OMM 1992 "B"). '  With that introduction it then proceeds to invert traditional marketing of the region: •  The ' M a y a of Today' are the first instead of last feature described, and are presented as a dynamic rather than static culture.  •  Ecological attractions rank second as an attraction and archaeological attractions third, with both rooted in their modern-day cultural context.  •  The smaller partners in  Mundo Maya  precede Mexico and have equal advertising  space. •  Only passing reference is made to Cancun.  The brochure closes with a promising statement:  ' T h e first joint promotional packet for Mundo Maya was ready in August 1990. The OMM tested this material at the 1991 El Tiangus and Caa/Kab//trade fairs in Mexico and Guatemala (OMM 1991; SECTUR 1991 "E"). Technical assistance from the E E C enabled the OMM to refine its brochures and print them in five languages in time for the 1992 ITB Trade Fair in Berlin. This joint marketing effort, combined with strong individual promotional campaigns by Mexico and Guatemala, quickly attained high visibility for Mundo Maya. 11  - 112 -  "Mundo Maya is a destination which offers something genuine and unique. W e want to share all of this with our visitors, but we do not want to lose it. Responsible behaviour [in bold print in brochure] on the part of travel organizations and of every visitor will help us" (OMM 1992: "B"). All it lacks from a 'full fare' standpoint is a code of alternative travellers' ethics like that used by Wildland Adventures (1992). The brochure entitled  'Mundo Maya: Mexico,  Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador'(OMM  1993 "A"), developed without assistance from the E E C , deviates from this 'full fare' format: •  It highlights ecotourism, adventure tourism, and archaeology instead of low impact tourism.  •  Pursuits related to contemporary Maya culture are an addendum, and the living Maya are again described in anachronistic terms.  •  Mexico, presumably the major underwriter of this brochure, receives six times as much advertising space as its smaller  Mundo Maya  partners and devotes a good portion of  it to Cancun. •  The brochure closes with a large tract on adventure (i.e. action-oriented) cloaked as ecotourism.  tourism  Belize is the only country to elaborate on its ecotourism  product(s). The discrepancies between O M M brochures produced with and without E E C assistance are considerable. T h e two O M M brochures analyzed herein are diametrically opposed insofar as content and principle are concerned. The first conforms to the  Mundo Maya  concept and thus lends itself to  'full fare' tourism. T h e second, though focused on ecotourism, is simply an extension of conventional marketing practises.  - 113 -  I. 4 Summary of Public Sector Mundo Maya Brochures Official Mundo Maya brochures, with the exception of those produced with E E C assistance, fall short of the 'low impact' concepts and principles set out in program conceptual documents.  Like  mainstream brochures, they "include images of beautiful people (tourists) but nothing to suggest the place where tourism happens" (Britton 1979: 322).  This sets a poor precedent for travel companies  designing products to complement the various Mundo Maya circuits.  O n e can hardly expect tour  operators to design and implement 'full fare' guidelines if member countries do not.  II. Private Sector Brochures 2.1 Introduction T h e concerted marketing of Mundo Maya by regional tourism ministries and the O M M has raised industry and consumer awareness about the program. A host of mainstream  112  and alternative  travel companies in Europe and North America listed tours to the region in their 1991/92 and subsequent brochures. Though brochures such as these have seldom been analyzed (Cohen 1989 "B") they reveal vital information about the practise of tourism.  It is tour operators that deliver in the  field what is proposed in theory (Mufioz 1992). I obtained brochures (1991/92) from 30 different alternative tour companies operating in Mundo Maya in order to determine what portion of tourism in the region is actually 'full fare' . T o simplify the 113  l n North America, several mainstream companies like FiestaWest, Sunquest, and Fun-Sun Tours boosted their traditional Cancun promotion with photographs of Mayan archaeological sites. Many also developed new itineraries featuring Guatemala in conjunction with Costa Rica. Mainstream tours to Guatemala have itineraries almost identical to those listed in most 'alternative' travel brochures. The 1991/92 Fiesta Sun brochure, for instance, lists Chichicastenango, Lake Atitlan, Antigua, the village of San Antonio Aguas Calientes (famous for its weaving), plus Tikal and environs. 1 , 2  F o r illustrative purposes, a few companies operating in Costa Rica were included in the analysis, as their corporate practices epitomize and thus help clarify a given category. Companies with Costa Rican itineraries seem to be expanding into Mundo Maya. 113  - 114 -  analysis she classified the various companies into six categories based on their promotional rhetoric versus performance in the field. This approach, outlined below in Table 1 and in Appendices 1 and 2, reveals in stark terms how misleading most A T marketing is.  2.2 Smorgasbord AT A T firms falling into this category promise an intimate travel style and deliver little else. S o m e allude to conservation or cultural preservation (Wilderness Travel 1992); none, however, engage in meaningful interpretation or activities beneficial to the host population. References to local culture are either totally lacking (Safaricentre 1992; Lost World Adventures 1991) or sensationalistic. Contrived features like 'timelessness' (Exodus 1992; Safaricentre 1992) and 'friendliness' (Mountain Travel/Sobek 1992) prevail. The emphasis is on seeing the exotic before it disappears. Participants visit the standard menu of local sites in the company of an 'authoritative' guide.  Comfort may be sacrificed in the name of  adventure (Green Tortoise 1992; Exodus 1992), but visitors by and large remain in their own cultural enclave. This precludes constructive exchange(s) between host and guest. Tourists lacking a realistic appreciation of local life are ill-equipped to buy or photograph with discretion. Smorgasbord A T , a highly ethnocentric form of travel, is not 'full fare'.  2.3 High-End Study A T High-end study trips differ from 'smorgasbord' trips in that they tend to have an interpretive emphasis, be it ecological (Overseas Adventure Travel 1992;  Ecogrupos 1993), archaeological  (Adventures Unlimited 1992), or more whollistic (Mexi-Mayan 1992). They are more likely to present ecological and archaeological attractions within their cultural context, highlighting the contemporary anthropology of the host region (Nature Expeditions International 1992; Mexi-Mayan 1992).  Some  - 115 -  actually  emphasize  International 1992)  culture,  promising opportunities  to  meet  local people  (Nature  or eat meals with Maya communities (Far Horizons 1992).  categories, however, various shades of interpretive accuracy is evident.  Expeditions  A s in other A T  One company highlights the  'little change' of host communities (Far Horizons 1992) while the next comments on these same communities' dynamism (Mexi-Mayan 1992). One might infer from the claims of authenticity that 'high-end study' companies display a high degree of commitment to community endeavors.  The very opposite is true.  in this category gives lip service, let alone money, to community initiatives.  None of the companies . Even the firms peddling  contemporary anthropology leave the issue of reciprocity unaddressed. T h e illusion of being more 'full fare' is betrayed by a lack of deeds.  2.4 Action A T Companies offering 'action' trips are typically regarded as the most adventure-oriented and hence least responsible A T operators.  Their conduct in the field, however, generally surpasses that  of 'smorgasbord' and 'high-end study' firms. Although some are quite ignorant about their destination and indifferent to its future (Slickrock 1992), most are not.  Companies like Arizona Raft Adventures  and Far Flung Adventures devote time and money to the preservation of unique river habitats.  Their  brochures, with sections devoted to constituency building, promote issues as well as products. Island Expeditions goes a step further, designing each trip to support local communities. 'Action' firms, more forthright in their advertising, are also more apt to give rather than just take. If this reciprocity is genuine, i.e. based on dialogue and. decisions at the community level, then the tourism in question might be 'full fare'. Most companies, nevertheless, support conservation efforts that sustain their own livelihood as opposed to that of local communities. A T that ignores the priorities of the host population is not 'full fare'.  - 116 -  2.5 Concerned Citizens A T 'Concerned citizen' brochures appeal to consumers' growing concern about environmental and social issues.  S o m e focus on purely ecological issues, professing to "search for... how and why the  environment is changing - and endangered" (Questers 1992).  But an increasing number erase the  dichotomy commonly made between ecological and social issues.  Above the Clouds Trekking and  Encounter Overland, for instance, both offer participants a glimpse of everyday life in host communities. Such companies, through their promise to unearth both pleasant and unpleasant realities, present clients an opportunity to venture forth from their cultural enclave and understand issues from a local perspective. This, according to Sobek Expeditions' Richard Bangs, enables tourists to understand both 'the specialness and the tragedy' of travel (Muqbil 1990). 'Concerned citizen' brochures are high on sustainable development rhetoric and low on corresponding action. There is negligible correlation between the enlightened discourse in 'concerned citizen' brochures and corporate deeds. None of the companies in this category contribute directly or indirectly to grassroots initiatives.  It is possible that they adopt their rhetorical stance chiefly to attract  a more discerning and hence high end clientele. Although 'concerned citizen' A T has several ingredients that might foster 'full fare' tourism it falls short in the end. The host community benefits through 'trickle down' only. A visitor moved by his/her experience might become personally committed to local issues; involved companies, however, do not actively set an example.  2.6 Committed Citizens AT Companies classified as 'committed citizens' make concerted efforts to mitigate tourism related impacts.  Most donate a percentage of their profits to conservation organizations (Ecosummer 1992;  Elzinga 1992; Journeys International 1992; Victor Emanuel 1992; Voyagers 1992), orchestrate special  - 117 -  fund-raising trips (Ecosummer 1992; Victor Emanuel 1992), or issue fund-raising appeals through their newsletter (Victor Emanuel 1992). fund-raising entity in themselves.  Some, like Sierra Club Outings, constitute a consciousness and While funds raised from such trips may not flow principally to host  communities, the companies and organizations conducting them tend to patronize local establishments and favour low impact modes of travel.  This corporate diligence results in less exploitative tourism.  At the top of the 'concerned citizen' hierarchy lie a select few companies sustainable development in the host community per se. helm.  dedicated to  These trendsetters all have visionaries at the  Will and Joan Weber of Journeys International collaborated with Kurt Kutay of Wildland  Adventures to launch the  Earth  Preservation  Fund  ("EPF").  This volunteer-driven  non-profit  organization "identifies and supports village and community level projects which promote environmental or cultural preservation... [It] is an ongoing experiment to discover and explore means by which group and individual travellers can contribute tangibly, directly, and significantly to global environmental conservation and human welfare at a local level in less developed regions of the world. Our objective is to demonstrate smallscale, local-level models of preservation action which will inspire adoption by communities and wealthier funding agencies on a broader scale" ( E P F brochure enclosed in Wildland Adventures 1992). The E P F has sponsored the Toledo District Mayan Co-op Guesthouse in Belize and the  Punta Laguna  Spider Monkey Project in Mexico, four projects in neighbouring Costa Rica, plus a host of other projects worldwide.  Victor Emanuel, founder of Victor Emanuel Nature Tours, is equally committed.  as a consultant to Washington, D.C. based Conservation International on its  El Triunfo  He acts  Biosphere  Reserve project. These latter three 'concerned citizen' companies, supporting supply-side initiatives, promote 'full fare' tourism. The rest simply have a clear corporate conscience. Their brochures reflect the true social history of the host community (see Britton 1979), and they pass the corporate-donation litmus  - 118 -  test suggested by Lee (1992).  Neither of these deeds, however, erases the strictly demand-side  nature of their operations.  2.7 Volunteer A T Participants in volunteer-based A T pay the full cost of their travel experience. Their fare also helps offset overall project or program expenses.  T h e s e people are selected on the basis of their  capacity and drive to act upon trip-derived solidarity . Compassion rather than dollars is the currency 114  considered. Volunteer-based A T is generally 'full fare'.  The exception, which might apply for certain  Earthwatch projects, is when the project or program is researcher rather than community defined and controlled.  2.8 Summary of Private Sector Mundo Maya Brochures Alternative travel companies aspiring to low impact or 'full fare' tourism are a minority.  Only  a fraction of those that purport to engage in sustainable tourism actually do. Most A T companies portray the ecological and archaeological features of destinations out of their human context.  This is a serious misrepresentation.  In locales sought out primarily for their  archaeological or natural beauty there are usually local peoples.  Tourists arriving under any other  impression will be ungracious guests, if not undiscriminating consumers.  Many proponents of alternative tourism feel that the program should select its visitors, as opposed to the visitor selecting the program. OXFAM and Community Aid Abroad, for example, both select participants in their trips from among agency supporter (Gonsalves 1987). Other agencies open their alternative tours to the public, screening applicants against a set of criteria such as awareness of development issues, commitment to acting on these issues, and attitudes in dealing with people of other cultures (Gonsalves 1987). This information is usually gleaned through bio-data submitted along with the trip application form(s).  - 119 -  Companies hawking the cultural richness of the region, nevertheless, do not necessarily deserve praise. Many present the 'rare' and 'exotic' facets of indigenous life completely out of context. They turn traditional events into spectacles and locals into landmarks.  The result is a distorting and  de-humanizing form of tourism which encourages 'Peeping Tom' behaviour. Tourists find themselves abandoning their empathy for the sake of a photograph or other memento. The issue at hand thus seems to be one of representation . Who decides what is appropriate 115  to show tourists? And who designs the appropriate interpretation scheme? A s Bruner (1991) notes, brochure language "is as much a structure of power as it is a structure of meaning...  This is what  power is about - the powerful are able to decide what stories will be told, by whom, and in what discursive space..." (Bruner 1991: 240-241).  Interpretive strategies controlled by outsiders are never  neutral in the images they procure.  Conclusion  Mundo Maya can  thrive only a short time on the illusion of being sustainable.  Without  correlation between rhetoric and substance, the program will before long be defined by the latter. Quick action by regional planners is required to avert this. Conservation and community development issues must be addressed alongside marketing considerations, or the uniqueness of regional attractions will be lost through demand-side A T . Alternative tourists will simply go elsewhere.  u :  T h e question of representation versus participation is not confined to the Mayan region. Several countries  promoting cultural tourism have had to address this controversial issue. The Aborigines of Australia are one of many ethnic groups in a similar position to the Maya. For decades their culture and welfare were ignored; now "all of Australia is marketing them with a vengeance... [perpetuating] distorted and racially prejudiced - and sometimes patronising - views" (PATA 1990: 44). Little effort has been directed to devising ways to advantageously involve the Aborigines themselves in tourism marketing and development (Hollinshead 1988).  - 120 -  TABLE 1: SUMMARY OF PRIVATE SECTOR BROCHURES  SMORGASBORD CATEGORY (7 total)  HIGH-END STUDY CATEGORY (5 total)  ACTION CATEGORY (4 total)  CONCERNED CITIZENS CATEGORY (4 total)  COMMITTED CITIZENS CATEGORY (7 total)  VOLUNTER/ GENUINE STUDY (3 total)  Adventure Tourism  7  0  4  2  0  0  Ecotourism  0  5  0  4  7  0  Low Impact Tourism  0  0  0  0  3  3  $25-$75/Day  2  0  0  1  0  1  $76$125/Day  0  0  3  1  1  2  $126$175/Day  2  3  1  1  4  0  Over $175/Day  3  2  0  1  3  0  Sustainable Rhetoric  1  3  3  4  7  3  Related Donations  0  1  1  0  7  3  Other Good Deeds  0  1  2  0  7  3  Popular AT Sites  7  4  3  3  4  0  Obscure AT Sites  1  1  0  1  4  3  1st Class Accommod.  4  3  0  1  1  0  Tourist Class Hotel  1  1  0  1  1  1  Inn or Lodge  4  4  1  2  6  0  Camping  3  2  4  1  3  0  Host Family  0  0  0  0  0  2  Motorized land travel  5  5  N/A  4  5  3  - 121 -  Nonmotorized land travel  0  1  N/A  0  1  N/A  Raft/kayak  1  1  4  2  2  N/A  Host Country Guide  1  2  0  0  2  1  Host Community Guide  0  0  3  1  4  2  Allow over 12 clients per trip  6  4  1  4  2  N/A  Restrict to 12 or less clients  0  0  1  0  5  N/A  Recycled Brochure  2  2  0  1  5  0  Recycleable Brochure  5  4  0  3  3  2  Half & half Brochure  0  1  2  0  2  0  [Compiled from research in Appendices 1 & 2]  - 122 -  Chapter 8: DEMAND-SIDE OR PSEUDO ALTERNATIVE TOURISM  Introduction The private sector brochures analyzed in Chapter 7 pertain chiefly to demand-side A T . Demand-side (or market driven) A T stems from the D S P . The principles embodied in demand-side A T are thus inherently opposed to 'full fare' or sustainable tourism.  Exponential growth in visitation at  popular A T sites unleashes an array of negative social and ecological impacts. Demand-side A T is not true A T . The gap between theory and practice is virtually unbridgeable, because A T theory stems from one world view while demand-side practice is governed by another. It is important for the credibility of A T theory that true (i.e. 'full fare') A T and pseudo A T are differentiated between.  Otherwise, the performance of demand-side adventure and ecotourism will  detract attention from the promise of supply-side alternatives. This chapter discusses the defining characteristics of demand-side A T . A s these characteristics are elaborated upon in relation to  Mundo Maya,  it becomes clear that what regional planners presently  parade as 'low impact' tourism is in reality quite the opposite.  I. Visitation Levels 1.1 Industry Trends The financial promise of A T has enticed a number of LICs facing large debt burdens and declining terms of trade to peddle their ecological and cultural treasures for relief. Cashing in on the A T boom has not always proven easy; the number of dedicated alternative tourists is not only small but fickle in its destination choice (see previous chapter).  Many LICs found themselves broadening  their product offering to capture A T dabblers (Williams  1991).  Countries like Nepal began to  - 123 -  "encourage tourism from all sources, irrespective of the types of tourists and/or the carrying capacity of the land" (Smith 1980: page unknown). T h e aggressive marketing of A T destinations by LICs has resulted in growth rates comparable to those in the industry at large. In 1987, nature-oriented tours to LICs increased by only 17% (Ingram & Durst 1989). That year, however, "between $ 1 . 7 - 1 2 billion was spent on ecotourism (depending on your definition) in developing countries alone. While this makes up only a fraction of the $150 billion spent by international tourists, it represents a much higher percentage in terms of those international tourists travelling to developing countries" (Passoff 1991: 28). Mounting evidence suggests that A T growth in certain LICs may actually exceed industry standards.  The 1992 Specialty Travel Index featured a total of 623 companies; 112 of those in the  Spring/Summer edition alone offered ecotourism in LICs (Yee 1992). The majority of these companies concentrate their operations in a handful of countries (Ingram & Durst 1989). T h e trendier destinations have thus experienced exponential growth.  In Thailand, the number of visitors jumped from 800,000  in 1986 to 4.3 million in 1989 (Fineman 1990).  Costa Rica, meanwhile, prepared in 1993 for the  second doubling of visitation in two years (Ashton 1992 "B").  1.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya T h e O M M , in embryonic form in 1990  when knowledge of A T ' s pitfalls was becoming  widespread, occupied a unique and enviable position. It could glean the best from the global A T boom whilst avoiding the havoc underway in places like the Galapagos and Nepal.  Mundo Maya  thus stood  to deliver the sustainable development promised in program conceptual documents. The indiscriminate marketing of  Mundo Maya  Mundo Maya since  1990 has placed the program in jeopardy.  is now poised for the same fate as neighbouring Costa Rica:  - 124 -  "While we're trying to determine how to develop one end of the spectrum true ecotourism, mass tourism has taken over, and no one has prepared for it" (Ashton 1992 "B": 5). Publicity of popular ecotour sites is prompting mass visitation. T h e 'success' of  Mundo Maya will  in all likelihood increase. Tourists tend to flock to regions  where their purchasing power creates bargains  116  (Smith 1989).  They are particularly drawn to  "Countries where there is a rich mix of art, crafts, music, dance, architecture and other attractions" (Cater 1987: 211). attractions . 117  Mundo Maya  possesses these attributes, as well as a wide array of unique natural  This set of features - coupled with an impressive network of national parks and  biosphere r e s e r v e s  118  - has given the region a prominent position in the A T marketplace.  Mexico ranks  alongside Costa Rica as one of the seven most popular ecotourism destinations in the world (Whelan 1991).  Belize, meanwhile,  destinations  119  has joined Costa  Rica on the  list of fastest growing  ecotourism  (Blum 1991).  Mundo Maya's  rate and extent of growth are concerns in themselves; the situation, however,  is exacerbated by tourists' congregation at a few ecological and archaeological hot spots.  Alternative  Latin America is at present very popular amongst North Americans due to low land costs there (Hunt 1989; Marino 1991 "A"). In the 1992 PATA Intelligence Centre survey of ecotour operators, 71% of the 24 respondents listed Latin America as the destination for which their clients have shown the most interest (Yee 1992). Approximately 26% of outbound American ecotour operators specialize in Latin America (Epler Wood 1992). 116  lngram and Durst (1989) list Mexico as a destination for all activities popular with ecotourists, particularly bird watching and botanical study. Guatemala and Belize have equal ecotourism pull. Companies like Victor Emanuel Nature Tours of Texas and Questers Worldwide Nature Tours of New York regularly take clients to see the quetzal, other tropical bird species, and flora in Mesoamerican rainforests (see Herter 1993; Sundstrom 1993). Rainforests, according to the PATA Intelligence Centre, are the preferred destination of ecotourists (Yee 1992). U7  118  According to Marsh (1987), the establishment of a national park draws tourists.  The repercussions of this growth could be far more serious for Belize than they have been for Costa Rica. Costa Rica, with a population of 3 million, received half a million tourists in 1991 (Baez & Rovinski 1992). The year previous, Belize - a country of 184,000 - received over 117,000 tourists (Contours 1991). At present growth rates it will not belong before tourists outnumber locals in Belize.  - 125 -  tourists typically want to see the better known features of the host country (Fennell & Smale 1992). Not only are there more companies 'selling the same fragile destinations' (Kutay 1991 "A"). There is also a startling resemblance in the itineraries of the different tour companies [See Appendix 2]. The cumulative effects of mass visitation at popular A T sites are not hard to imagine: "One outbound tour company may only send a few hundred people to the Galapagos islands every year. That in itself is not going to have such a great ecological or social impact. However, if there are 215 operators in the United States, 100 in Europe and 30 in Ecuador sending the same 200 travellers, the collective impacts can be enormous" (Ashton 1991: 47). Alternative tourists may be more discriminating consumers and sensitive guests; this, however, by no means negates their quantitative impacts (Sexton 1991). "There are well documented cases of the impacts upon trails and other sensitive areas of use by even the most environmentally sympathetic tourist" (Butler 1989: 60). The mass visitation of A T destinations is perhaps best illustrated in Mexico. of tourists visiting archaeological sites choose either  In Mexico, 76%  Tulum, Chichen-ltza, Uxmal, Palenque,  or  only 24% venture to one of the twenty-nine other sites open to the public ( S E C T U R 1990).  Coba;  Official  visitation figures for 1989 put this in perspective [See Tables 2& 3]. Even if tourists arrived evenly over a full year instead of seasonally the total number of visitors received per day would have ranged from 345 to 2,041  at popular archaeological sites and 36 to 79 at lesser known ecological s i t e s  120  .  This  drastically exceeds twenty-person group size associated with A T (see Williams 1991). Visitor statistics in Mexico will be more alarming now that every A T company operating in Latin America has one or more  Mundo Maya  Mundo Maya  is underway.  Nearly  products (See Appendix  Popular ecological sites like Aguas Azules and the Sumidero Canyon would have much higher visitation than the Balancancne  or Loltlun caves in the  Yucatan.  - 126 -  1)  121  . Sites previously frequented by individual travellers are thus receiving a steady flow of mini-buses  (Ashton 1992 "B"). Guatemala is experiencing a similar phenomenon.  A s in Mexico, most tour operators share  the same base towns if not the exact same route, usually Lake Atitten, Chichicastenango, and Antigua plus an extension to  Tikal  (Molina 1986).  Over 70% of European and North American visitors to  Guatemala take in the Chichicastenango market (Hudman 1978). Most will carry on from there to the tourist-saturated town of  Panajachel  on Lake  Atitla'n.  The dangers of tourist clustering are well known inside the A T industry.  MacGregor (1980)  stressed over a decade ago the need for the spatial and temporal decentralization of Latin American tourism. Tourism professionals like Baez and Rovinski (1992) are still struggling to get this message across. The O M M initially heeded such warnings, making decentralization a central tenet of  Maya.  Mundo  Program conceptual documents stated that diversifying the tourist flow was essential to avoiding  the saturation of popular destinations ( S E C T U R 1991 "A", "B"). Present marketing strategies, however, thwart the realization of these goals. The various circuits, with few exceptions, feature A T sites that are already well known and highly visited. The pattern seen in other popular A T destinations around the world has thus reoccurred in  Mundo Maya:  "Those 'in the know' pioneering new areas and the  crowds hot on their heels" (Rosote et al. 1991: 741 ) . 122  121  Each company, whether specializing in 'smorgasbord' or 'committed' AT, features the same highland Chiapas itinerary (see Appendix 2). Victor Emanuel Nature Tours, like all the rest, conducts day excursions from Tuxtla Gutierrez and San Cristobal de las Casas to the famed Sumidero Canyon and villages around San Juan de Chamula (Sundstrom 1993). Turner and Ash (1975), Cazes (1989), Cohen (1989 "A" and "B"), Marsh (1989), Ashton (1992 "B") and Wheeller (1992) all discuss the phenomenon of sequential occupance associated with AT. Less adventurous tourists arrive as soon as basic services are in place (Cohen 1989 "B"). Mass visitation is typically underway at popular AT sites within a mere twelve to fifteen years of them hitting the marketplace (Passoff 1991). 122  - 127 -  Demand-side A T ignores principles central to 'full fare' tourism like social and ecological thresholds.  Locals have no control over the size or nature of tourist influx.  Communities experience  disequilibria (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990) and conservation zones evolve into recreation areas (Ashton 1992 "B").  These qualitative changes preclude sustainable community development, present and  future.  II. The Social & Ecological Impacts of Demand-side AT 2.1 Industry Trends There is little merit in harbouring on the negative impacts accompanying demand-side A T as these are already well documented in industry literature. Thorough impact studies (see Smith 1989; Boo 1990;  Cernea 1991;  Chambers 1991), pro-active planning (see de Kadt 1979;  Hardoy &  Satterthwaite 1991) and regulation (see Fineman 1990; Lindberg 1991) are rarities in the A T industry. A s a consequence, there exists an encyclopedia of mistakes to plan against. Nearly every popular A T destination on the marketplace has suffered severe negative impacts. Latin America alone is full of examples. In Brazil's Amazon Basin the tourism industry has "contributed to extensive damage, including widespread pollution, destruction of wildlife, and cultural erosion among aboriginals" (Harrington 1991: page unknown; see Trent 1991 as well). Ecuador is facing even more pronounced problems in the G a l a p a g o s  123  . Costa Rica, the darling of the industry, is no exception . 124  Ecuador, on the recommendation of park managers and biologists, instituted a 25,000 visitors/year cap on Galapagos tourism (Kutay 1989 "B"). This limit has never been adhered to by the Ecuadorian government. Conservative sources recorded nearly 50,000 visitors to the islands in 1990 (Weiner 1991). Actual visitation levels, however, may be much higher; 87,000 visitation permits were issued in 1989 (Finch 1991).  Costa Rica - with over 25% of its territory marked as national parks, wildlife refuges, and private or indigenous forest reserves - has the highest percentage of protected territory in the Western Hemisphere ((Weinberg 1991 "B"). It also has the highest rate of deforestation in the Western Hemisphere (Bellm 1989; Weinberg 1991 "B"). According to Perera (1989), "Costa Rica's widely admired forest parks are islands surrounded by deforestation as extensive as that in Chiapas" (Perera 1989: 523). The problem is compounded by tourism within those parks being essentially out  - 128 -  Demand-side A T differs little from mainstream tourism in the realm of social and ecological impacts. The tourism industry as a whole has little regard for matters other than profit. This is evident in Mexico: F O N A T U R , since its inception, has consistently betrayed the interests of host communities (see Long 1989; Hossie 1990)  by failing to mitigate the negative impacts of tourism development  (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990). For this reason, "More often in the literature, it has been asserted that tourism development produces conditions of net negative effects at the local level." (Preister 1989: 16). Many tourism scholars and professionals feel that demand-side A T has the potential to be more destructive to the host community than regular tourism. Butler (1990), Butler & Waldbrook (1991) and Dann (1991) all argue that the closer guest-host contacts inherent to A T pose a greater threat to community welfare than enclave tourism if visitation balloons. Alternative tourists, though a preferred tourist type, can be a nightmare for the host community if their interactions are not mediated by an informed guide  125  . While  "often keenly concerned with the exploitation, degradation and destruction wrought by outsiders upon the native societies that they visit, such individuals ... may be blissfully unaware of the fact that they themselves may infringe upon native custom" (Cohen 1989 "A": 15). Several villages and towns in highland Chiapas have had increasing problems with tourists.  It is not  uncommon to see "The crowds of tourists [in a church] battle round the side aisles all the way through mass, taking photographs and calling to each other as though they were in a funfair" (Marnham 1985: 59).  T h e towns of  San Juan Chamula  and  Zincantan  near  San Cristdbal de las Casas  [see Map 2],  of control (Baez 1992; Baez & Rovinski 1992; Wood 1993). Ashton (1992) warns that there is a disaster pending in Costa Rica.  Tourists typically expect to reap the experiential return on their holiday investment on their own terms (Callimanopulos 1982; Butler 1989). This mindset often spawns disrespectful and intruding behaviour on the part of tourists (Seiler Baldinger 1988; Browne & Nolan 1989; Laxson 1991). It may also reinforce prejudices between hosts and guests (Seiler Baldinger 1988; Guldin 1989). A sensitive tour guide can help tourists remember that travel is a privilege instesd of a right (Harrison 1990) and that it should be 'a two-way street' (Shafroth 1991).  - 129 -  therefore, have not only established tourist offices to regulate church visits but banned cameras during church services and festivals (Vogt 1990; Brosnahan 1991).  Such community stances are sure to  increase, as problems of this nature are on the rise in Guatemala as well (Toriello 1992 "B").  2.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya Mundo Maya planners  are well aware of the negative impacts associated with the tourism  industry and have made every attempt to distance  Mundo Maya from  them.  Program conceptual  documents praise cultural heterogeneity, stating that "Tourism... introduces the traveller to the different cultures, beliefs and traditions on our planet" ( S E C T U R 1991 "B": 1).  They describe the emerging  tourism as "a tourism in search of authentic experiences, of contact the local peoples, their foods, and their life-styles" (OMM 1991: 3) and maintain that "the impact of tourism can bring as many benefits to the local residents as to visitors, without harm to the cultural heritage" ( S E C T U R 1991 "B": 13). Rhetoric pertaining to sustainable development is particularly pervasive.  Background documents not  only acknowledge that "the environment of the zone is very sensitive to tourist traffic" ( S E C T U R 1991 "B": 13) but assert that: "ill-conceived and poorly planned tourist developments have eroded precisely the natural human qualities of the environment which attract our visitors. W e are destroying the land and losing our rich ethnicity" (OMM 1991: 1; O M M 1992 "A": 2). They stipulate that  Mundo Maya is  "seeking a balance between the demands of tourists and the  necessity to protect and conserve our natural, historic, and cultural heritage" ( S E C T U R 1991 "A": 8). Notwithstanding, the demand-side character of  Mundo Maya to date  has ominous implications.  A s Johnson (1986: 14) notes, "In the field of [alternative] tourism, market pressures can undermine any one, or all, of the principles of sustainable development".  Government agencies seduced by tourism  revenues lose sight of the initial concept and goals. The 'more is better' mentality takes root and all good intentions fall to the wayside. This conceptual decay set in early with  Mundo Maya.  In 1989, the  - 130 -  year that La Ruta Maya was unveiled, Southworth astutely observed that  "As the principal project  proposed for the region... [it had] already prompted many to think about the least environmentallydamaging ways to accommodate more tourists" (Southworth 1989: 34). Tourist developments arising thus far under the  Mundo Maya  banner have all conformed to  unsustainable industry precedents. The luxury archaeological villa at Cobi was built on expropriated land without locals' consent or participation (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990) and is run by Club Med (see Schulberg 1989; Nauffts 1992).  There is no spillover of infrastructure as F O N A T U R professes (see  Travel Weekly 11/12/90); the hotel compound contains "a world of plenty - of tennis courts and swimming pools, bathrooms with unlimited water, and self-contained electrical systems... [but beyond] is a life where poverty remains the norm and the future" (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990: 12). The demand-side forces evident at Cob6  are now at work throughout the region.  worst is unfolding at the secluded limestone pools at  Semuc Champey  Ecotourism at its  in Guatemala:  "According to Shawn Acuna, our guide for the day and owner of Ecotours of Cob&n, up to five helipads... were being maintained, each by a different tour company based in Guatemala City. Yet there were no facilities: no garbage cans (Shawn played litter patrol), not even un baho - only the government's recent construction of a gravel trail to offer easier access from the parking and helipad areas to the pools." (Leibman 1993:11, after press visit). There is a distinct lack of coordination between Mundo Maya planners and promoters. T h e latter are undeterred by warnings about the unsustainability of demand-side A T . In their view, the only limitation to tourism development is the investor (see Travel Weekly 11/12/90). Another archaeological villa would have been built at  Tikal had  Club Med not backed out due to the archaeological site's  remote and rainy environment (Leibman 1993). A s Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer point out: "Coba" is as close to a soft-path archaeological tourist location as one is likely to find in southern Mesoamerica. A s such, we can examine it not only a s a specific case but also as a portent of what further expansion of this niche could entail for the region and its people." (Daltabuit and Pi-Sunyer 1990: 11).  - 131 -  The profits chased by  Mundo Maya promoters will plummet  to 'full fare' A T are not soon addressed.  if the sustainability concerns central  Over-visitation of popular sites will erode product quality,  destroying the unique features that permit the region to bill itself as a world-class A T destination. Alternative tourists will simply choose another destination (Zammit 1981).  III. Demand-Side Pricing & Profit Distribution 3.1 Industry Trends T h e more critical question with regard to profits is what portion actually goes to the host community.  In this sense, 'full fare' tourism has its own bottom line.  If locals do not perceive  themselves as receiving fair remuneration for the goods and services they provide and/or lost opportunity cost(s) associated with tourism then the tourism in question is not 'full fare'. Figures revealing the financial truth behind A T rhetoric are s c a r c e  126  .  The only companies  broadcasting their level of financial commitment to host community welfare are the few that have something to boast about, such as Elzinga Adventures, Victor Emanuel Nature Tours, Journeys International, and Wildland Adventures (see Table 1, Appendix 1). The rest are careful to couch their deeds in general terms. There is growing controversy about the high price of alternative tours (King 1991). A s Wheeller notes, the "new forms of tourism, though supposedly simpler, mysteriously seem to be simultaneously more expensive" (Wheeller  1992: 105).  anywhere from $60 to $300 U S D a d a y  127  According to Kutay (1989 .  "A"), A T land packages cost  Research by the Massachusetts Audobon Society shows  that the typical ecotourist is willing to pay up to $5,000 U S D per excursion (Southworth 1989).  126  Most  Media leaks are seemingly non-existent; industry literature critiques AT as a market segment, but reports on  the performance of individual companies are conspicuously missing. Appendix 1 confirms this price range, with the least expensive full-service tour costing $52 USD/day and the most expensive costing $326 USD/day.  - 132 -  ecotourists, however, spend only $1050 to $1400 USD/week on the actual package (see Natureplace 1991 and Fennell & Smale 1992). The amount spent varies according tour type but also destination. In Belize, ecotourists' average weekly package expenditure is a mere $454 (Boo 1990). Costa Rica, attracting tourists that pay an average of $1,800 to $3,000 U S D per week (Coone 1989), falls at the high end of the ecotourism cost spectrum. Industry advocates defend A T ' s relatively high price on the basis that it holds benefits for the host community and/or destination: "The higher cost of these tours seemingly allows operators to hire more local people, support community or environmental projects and serves as a natural regulator on the number of tourists able to participate" (Passoff 1991: 29; see Kutay 1989 "A", King 1991 as well). It also allows the hiring of academic lecturers with relevant expertise (Frommer 1991). Still, more often than not the high price simply implies more consumer frills (e.g. Special Expeditions, Table 6, Appendix 1).  The ecotour becomes an 'egotour' (Merschen 1992).  A high proportion of the tour fee goes to  fancy promotional materials . 128  There is little correlation between alternative tourists' spending levels and whether their trip is 'full fare' or not. AT  l28  1 2 9  .  T o begin, there is an exceptionally high leakage rate associated with demand-side  A study undertaken jointly by the World Bank, U.S. AID, and the W W F "found that tourism -  M a n y high-end ecotour companies undertake glossy marketing campaigns. Lindberg (1991) reported that one  nature tour operator's catalogue cost $350,000 to produce; with 3,000 clients that came to $117/person for promotion. 129  Some accounts of consumer spending give the impression that AT is extremely beneficial for the host economy. Fennell & Smale (1992), for example, state that Canadian tourists visiting Costa Rica spend $1,500 to $3,000 in the host economy over and above the cost of their trip. According to the Massachusetts Audobon Society, the average ecotourist contributes approximately $165 USD/day to the host country's economy (Southworth 1989). In reality, high profit leakage rates exist (see Tolba & El-Kholy 1992). In LICs, over 50% of gross tourism revenues are repatriated, that figure being even higher in very poor countries like Guatemala (Sherman & Dixon 1991). Significant leakage also occurs at the local level (see Hudman 1978). The notion of 'trickle down' is thus without foundation.  - 133 -  even ecotourism - provides little benefit to most native populations" (Stammer 1992: A20).  Tour  companies capture a huge proportion of the profits (Cunningham 1989; Sexton 1991). Those passing a donation audit, moreover, do not necessarily contribute to local causes (See Appendix 1). Communities hosting alternative tourists on the industry's terms reap scant benefits. In Nepal, were locals provide shelter and meals for trekkers, only $0.20 or 6.6% of the $3.00 U S D spent daily by each tourist stays in the village economy (Passoff 1991; Whelan 1991). Costa Rica reports similar levels of leakage; a mere 5.91% of the income generated by tourism in  Tortoguero  stays in the  community (Baez & Rovinski 1992). Baez & Rovinski (1992: 3) attribute this leakage to low community participation: in demand-side scenarios "community participation is not as high as expected according to the theoretical model of [AT] development". National parks in LICs fare little better.  Entrance fees are usually negligible (See Tables 5 &  5). Income generated from park facilities, meanwhile, typically goes to the federal government instead of local conservation or community development (Boo 1990). Few dollars are allocated to ecosystem maintenance or improvement (Lindberg 1991) as the notion of 'full fare' tourism implies (see Williams 1991).  King (1991: 61) asks a pertinent question: "Does it make sense for an American to pay a  couple thousand dollars for a trip to the Galapagos and only $40 [$80 as of 1992] in park fees?" From a 'full fare' perspective it is the spending habits as opposed to spending levels of alternative tourists that count.  These, in combination with the tour company's corporate ethic,  determine the degree of local benefit.  Does the tourist travel with responsible tour companies? Does  s/he patronize local producers and establishments? Does s/he pay locals a fair price for goods and services received? Ingram and Durst (1989) report that 40% of nature-oriented tour operators use rural or village accommodation. A less rosy picture is painted in Appendix 2: few operators hire local guides or use local guest houses or transport options. The Ecotourism Society (1992) thus urges ecotourists to consider closely who benefits from their trip.  - 134 -  Even the most diligent of A T consumers are limited in their capacity to make a positive impact on their host society. Demand-side A T precludes meaningful benefit by the host community because it ignores the issue of equity. Corporate and elite interests with access to serious capital are the only parties in a position to partake in the industry on their own terms (Rosote et al. 1990).  The rest,  namely indigenous peoples and other poor, are relegated to meaningless jobs and dead-end livelihoods (Cater 1987; Ross 1988 "B"; Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990; Kintz 1990; Chant 1992).  3.2 Management Implications for Mundo Maya Mundo Maya,  with a few notable projects as exceptions (discussed in next chapter), is at  present structured as a demand-side A T program.  The patterns that have arisen in other such A T  destinations will thus surface in Mesoamerica if policy changes do not soon occur.  Mundo Maya  is already positioned to suffer major profit leakage.  When the program was  launched, Mexico and Guatemala both changed their foreign investment laws to facilitate tourism growth.  Mexico increased its allowed foreign ownership share from 49% to 100% (Remington 1989).  Guatemala, also allowing 100% foreign ownership, went a step further and guaranteed the repatriation of capital (Tadeu & Phillips 1989).  Mundo Maya  profits remaining in the region will accrue to the established elite.  essentially guaranteed by  Mundo Maya's  organizational structure.  This is  Private sector participation (see  O M M 1991 and S E C T U R 1991 "E") is geared toward upper-class businessmen. Invitees include local chambers of c o m m e r c e  130  , hotel associations, established tour operators, and travel agencies ( O M M  1992 "A"; S E C T U R 1992). Grassroots organizations are excluded.  Chamber of Commerce members are typically urban elite whose sole connection to the tourism destination is their investment (Shacochis 1989).  - 135 -  T h e monopolization of tourism resources by the elite, documented in other A T destinations like Bhutan (Harron & Weiler 1992) and Ladakh (Sexton 1991), is thus well underway in Mesoamerica.  caciques™,  Local  usually  ladinos, already  & Hunt 1988; Glassman 1990).  control most tourism enterprises (Marnham 1985; Scarlett  Ladino merchants  and middlemen dominate the Chichicastenango  market (Hudman 1978). They are prominent in the Chiapas textile trade as well, supplying indigenous weavers with the necessary raw materials (Morris 1991). The ownership of Guatemala, the Lake  Atitla'n,  Pedro  Mundo Maya  enterprises is becoming increasingly concentrated.  Villas de Guatemala company  plus the  Villa Chichi  in  owns the  Chichicastenango  Villa Maya outside  Tikal, the  In  Villa Catarina on  (Hunt 1990). The popular island town of  San  on Ambergris C a y e in Belize, meanwhile "has changed overnight from family-run to corporate  owned" (Contours 1991: 28). Locals cannot enter the marketplace established.  on even a collective basis once a destination is  Their combined resources do not match those of outside investors.  Belize's Garifuna,  who acquired seashore land in Dangriga for a community ecotourism site prior to the town's boom, will be unable to purchase further lands now that competition from outsiders has increased (Lambey 1992). T h e type of tourism development spawned by communities.  Mundo Maya  thus holds little promise for host  It is a product of the old school of development planning, where "what grows is the  reinvested surplus that is controlled by the rich for the primary benefit of the rich" (Daly 1991: 234; see Diegues 1992: 141 as well).  Some might argue that the resulting economic growth and multiplier  Riding (1986) describes the cacique as the local boss who controls economic and political relations. "He may be the principal local landowner, he may own all of the commerce in the town that dominates an Indian region or he may purchase all the crops produced by the Indians" (Riding 1986: 303). As Vogt (1990) points out, he may himself be indigenous. Violence is usually the tool of control (Ballesteros 1989). For other descriptions of cacique domination see Blauert & Guidi (1992) and Nash & Sullivan (1992).  - 136 -  effect  132  generate 'trickle down' (see Chapter 1).  destination where the 'trickle down' attributed  But one would be hard pressed to find an A T  to demand-side A T actually outweighs the costs  associated with it (see Appendices 1 & 2). A s Cater (1987) notes, the benefits of tourism to one group or individual in a community often emerge as costs for the rest. Research has consistently shown that "If some local groups are already in control of the bulk of economic activity and some groups are impoverished, tourism imposed on this social order is likely to exacerbate it" (Preister  1989: 20; see also Vietor 1991).  Even the Peruvian  island of Taquile, famous for its supply-side tourism, has suffered this trend (Healy & Zorn 1983). Hence the World Bank's findings that tourism, even ecotourism, provides little benefit for most indigenous peoples (Stammer 1992). Engrained prejudices and marked social stratification in Mesoamerica will continue to deny the Maya a meaningful role in their namesake program until regional governments bolster their position through legislation.  The protected status of caciques precludes the opening of dignified and fairly  compensated jobs for them (Lack 1990). Without government intervention it will be business as per usual -  "caciques  [will] prevent [indigenous] communities from being provided with adequate food,  health, education and communication because it is evidently easier to control hungry, sick and ignorant people" (Riding 1986: 304).  Conclusion Demand-side A T is not 'full fare' unless locals are paid a fair price for goods and services sold. T h e tourism industry is rife with examples of exploited host communities. O n e A T operator charging  Smith (1989) describes the 'multiplier effect' as the ongoing recirculation of tourism profits through the host community. The benefits of this multiplier effect can be widespread if an environment supportive of small business exists (Riegert 1991). However, they are usually restricted to certain regions or segments of society (Marsh 1987).  - 137 -  its audience $250 to see a traditional Balinese dance turned around and paid the 200 villagers performing it 10 cents apiece (Conde Nast Traveler 1991). This hardly constitutes a fair exchange. Achieving fairness is difficult within a demand-side framework. Community leaders must decide what constitutes 'fair' and then negotiate for its acceptance (Gonsalves 1987). The power differentials inherent to most development situations (See Chapter 1) make the latter particularly hard. Yet some communities have met with success.  Locals guides at the Nazinga Wildlife Project in Burkino Faso  receive 50% of the guiding fee paid by tourists (Drake 1991 "A"), a fair split in view of the marketing and other support services provided by the national government. Fair payment on its own, nevertheless, does not necessarily connote 'full fare' A T . The tourism in question must satisfy other criteria as well to earn this classification.  Locals must retain an  acceptable degree of control over featured product(s). Benefits from that product, moreover, must flow equitably through the community. Equity is the keystone of 'full fare' A T .  Communities with extreme power differentials are  structurally biased against tourism-driven community development. Hence the countless cases in LICs of social problems arising in indigenous communities after a tourism boom (Cunningham 1991). Only in the presence of equity do tourism proceeds actually reach the grassroots. It is easy as a critic of demand-side A T to become emotional and succumb to a 'black or white' position of advocacy. This is unproductive, as most communities enmeshed in the tourism industry rely heavily on tourist dollars for their sustenance and would suffer upon its withdrawal. Outsiders must therefore be very cautious about condemning tourism as a livelihood on the basis of its 'Peeping T o m ' elements. Wright (1990) made an astute observation to this effect:  "Santiago Atitlcin  may be far from Panajachel, but the worst effects of tourism are only too apparent. One wonders what can be done. T h e s e people are short of land: weavings, peanuts, and photograph opportunities are among the few things they can sell. Nobody wants to see his children begging from gringos, but no one wants his children to go hungry. Tourism exploits the Indian, but the Indian suffers when tourism is  - 138 -  withdrawn.  The dilemma is one of control, and it will remain unresolved  until the larger question of Indian rights in Guatemala is addressed" (Wright 1990:  177).  One cannot catalyze any change in the imbalanced guest-host dynamic unless willing to tackle larger questions like human rights.  It is the denial of basic human rights by regional governments that  prevents more Mayan communities from taking a stand to re-orient tourism. Romantically suggesting that A T should displace regular tourism is reprehensible if the politically controversial barriers to its implementation are not simultaneously tackled.  - 139 -  TABLE 2: VISITATION LEVELS AT MEXICAN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES - 1989  ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE  TOTAL VISITORS 1989  % FOREIGNERS  VISITORS/DAY OVER 365 DAYS  Tulum  745.000  41%  2,041  Chichen-ltza  311,000 day  133  50%  852 + 90/night  33,000 night  Cob6  306,000  70%  838  Uxmal  132,000 day  43%  362 + 164/night  60,000 night  Palenque  126,000  61%  345  TABLE 3: VISITATION LEVELS AT MEXICAN ECOLOGICAL SITES - 1989  ECOLOGICAL SITE  TOTAL VISITORS 1989  % FOREIGNERS  VISITORS/DAY OVER 365 DAYS  Loltlun  29,000  n/a  79  13,000  n/a  36  Caves  Balancanche  Caves  [Tables 2 & 3 compiled from S E C T U R 1990 data]  Tulum received 1 million visitors in 1990 (Archaeology staff writer 1991).  - 140 -  TABLE 4: PARK FEES IN WORLDWIDE A.T. DESTINATIONS NATIONAL PARK  COUNTRY  ENTRANCE FEE  SOURCE  Pare National des Volcans  Rwanda  $170 USD/day  Weiner  Galapagos National Park  Ecuador  $80 U S D * (2 week limit)  Travel Agency  Machu Picchu  Peru  $10 USD/day  Long 1991  Noah's Park  Brazil  $10 USD/day  Kermath  Annapurna  Nepal  $6 USD/trekking permit  Lueck 1991  Various  Costa Rica  $2.75 USD/day or  Weiner 1991 Rovinski  less"  1991  1991  1991  Uluru National Park  Australia  $1.50 USD/day  Altman  1989  Lago de January  Brazil  $0.50 USD/day  Kermath  Thailand  Approximately $0.31/ day  Sherman & Dixon 1991  1991  Park  Khao Yai National Park  This amounts to $11.43 USD/day for a one-week trip or $5.71 USD/day for a fortnight The  Monteverde  entrance fee was reportedly raised from $2.75 USD/day to $10 USD/day after  a one year grace period enabling tour operators to reflect new park fee in tour price (Lindberg 1991)  TABLE 5: PARK FEES IN MUNDO MAYA A.T. DESTINATIONS NATIONAL PARK  COUNTRY  ENTRANCE FEE  SOURCE  Tikal  Guatemala  $1.00 USD/day or less  Glassman 1990  None  Toriello 1992 "B"  All Others Various  Mexico  None  Boo  1990  Cockscombe Jaguar  Belize  None  Boo  1990  Preserve  - 141 -  Chapter 9: SUPPLY-SIDE OR TRUE ALTERNATIVE TOURISM  Introduction The demand-side trends discussed in Chapter 8 illustrate why A T programs like Mundo must be greeted cautiously.  Maya  If a legislative and policy framework supportive of program goals is not  in place, the resulting tourism development can do more harm than good to host communities and ecosystems. T h e most problematic part of demand-side A T is its open invitation. cap, let alone feedback control, on visitation.  There is essentially no  The existence of social and ecological thresholds is  hence implicitly denied. Demand-side A T is thus defined by an irreconcilable duality. One moment it purports to be an alternative to mass tourism and the next it mimics mass tourism. This pendulum quality stems from the common thread between the two: namely, demand-side economics. A s Butler (1989) observed, reducing tourism numbers is extremely difficult in any free market situation. Only a handful of LICs with A T potential have resisted the temptation to uninhibitedly capitalize on it. S3o  Countries like Bhutan Tomei E Principe™  5  134  , Mauritius, the Maldives, Malawi (Fineman 1990) - and most recently,  (Ashton 1992 "B") - stand as exceptions. Mesoamerica has not yet earned  Bhutan, famous for its marketing restraint, set a national quota of 2,400 tourists/annum in 1988 (Valentine 1992). Visitors must be members of a guided group and are allowed into three to four designated towns only (Cater 1987; Harron & Weiler 1992). They are charged an all-inclusive land package price of $200 USD/person/day (Lindberg 1991; Valentine 1992). 134  This impressive management, while bringing Bhutan a step closer to 'full fare' tourism, has not actually secured it. Bhutan has yet to address the question of equity. The country's small-scale tourism industry remains the monopoly of the king's relatives (Harron & Weiler 1992). 135  Sao Tomei E Principe is in an even more enviable position than Mundo Maya. It was effectively closed to tourism until 1986. Tourism since then has been limited, as the government decided to concentrate on ecotourism. This country is therefore in a position to fully direct its tourism growth. In 1992 it made a promising step, hiring consultants to develop a plan for evaluating proposed ecotourism developments and mitigating the impact of approved  - 142 -  a place on this list.  Mundo Maya,  though only recently full of promise, is now poised for disaster. This  about face has come as no surprise. Some of the visionaries behind the program were among the first to s e e the signs.  Toriello (1992 "B") admitted that "A monster could be created because the product  is based on demand rather than supply." Although  Mundo Maya's  performance to date has been disappointing, all hope is not lost.  There is still time to learn from mistakes made, internally and elsewhere. have the benefit of hindsight.  Mundo Maya  planners now  Little confusion should exist as to what distinguishes true or 'full fare'  A T from its deceiving demand-side look alike.  The goals espoused by  Mundo Maya  proponents are  attainable if the original concept for sustainable tourism is revisited. A s Boo (1990) notes: "We are at an important moment in ecotourism. W e have succeeded in bringing this concept to the attention of the public. Now we need to firmly ground ecotourism in tangible case studies that show its conservation and economic development value. People are poised to believe that ecotourism can work, but we need to show them how. If we do not, we have much to lose. W e will lose our captive audience and ecotourism will become another passing trend. Further, conservationists may lose an important opportunity to significantly advance conservation efforts through a new method" (Boo 1992: x).  I. Getting Mundo Maya Back on Track 1.1 Deliberate Policy 'Full fare' A T can materialize in  Mundo Maya  policies consistent with sustainability principles. commitment.  if regional planners and politicians strive for  The prerequisites are consensus, cooperation, and  Only through a shared vision for a sustainable future will that vision become reality.  Mundo Maya  must  shift  from  being  a  'circumstantial'  to  'deliberate'  AT  destination.  Circumstantial A T destinations are those that superficially conform to the A T concept upon entering the marketplace (Weaver 1991).  ones (Ashton 1992 "B").  They lose this facade once demand-side forces set mass tourism in  - 143 -  motion.  Deliberate A T destinations, in contrast, consciously pursue through planning and policy the  goals and values associated with A T (Weaver 1991). The result is true or 'full fare' A T . O n c e the governments and public agencies involved in  Mundo Maya  are committed to  achieving this shift, attention can be turned to the private sector. A s Lillywhite & Lillywhite (1991: 92) stress, "It is important for all participants in the Low Impact Tourism Development process to get the scale of development and expectations into perspective and under control from the outset." T h e private sector, responsible for the actual implementation of  Mundo Maya,  has a pivotal role in the program.  Its actions must coincide with official policy for the program to succeed (hence the importance of legislation).  This is not currently happening due to the absence of firm government policy.  Second International Symposium on Ecotourism in Miami in 1990, which featured  At the  Mundo Maya,  there  was an ideological divide. The U.S.-based tour operators present espoused demand-side economics, while most environmental groups and  Latinos  in attendance advocated supply-side ecotourism (Passoff  1991; Faust 1993). Through sheer force of numbers - on the marketplace and in the field - the former have set  Mundo Maya's  tempo.  1.2 Integrated Planning: Demand-side policies associated with  Mundo Maya  have undermined rather than enhanced  quality of life for the Maya. While some locals do comparatively well selling crafts and cold drinks to tourists (Escobedo 1991), most are relegated to under-paid jobs that perpetuate the cycle of 'slavery through debt' (see Seiler-Baldinger 1988; Diegues 1992). This is a serious twist of events for a region already characterized by extreme poverty. The danger of this course is apparent when viewed over the long-term.  In boom times,  tourism-related employment may generate a higher standard of living than subsistence agriculture; however, the inverse is true once a hurricane or political unrest hits (Escobedo 1991). Subsistence  - 144 -  agriculture, formerly associated with abject poverty (Cater 1987; Ranck 1987), becomes once again the basis for survival.  Families that engaged in tourism in lieu of or at the expense of subsistence  agriculture find themselves poorer than ever (Escobedo 1991). Supply-side A T tackles 'development' from a very different angle than demand-side A T . Integration, connoting cultural homogenisation and grassroots passivity under the community and household vitality instead.  D S P , implies  The community assesses for itself the opportunity costs  associated with tourism (Cater 1987; Sherman & Dixon 1991). This occurs on a pro-active rather than reactive basis. Supply-side A T constitutes an iterative grassroots development tool. integrated approach.  It thus entails a more  Tourism represents just one element of a complex development/conservation  picture (Wallace 1991).  It is an "option that should be considered, but not to the exclusion of other  rural development options such as retention and expansion of established industries..." (Hospodarsky 1991: 15 & 16). Communities choosing to offer an A T product stand a better chance of success when tying this endeavour to existing livelihoods. In this scenario tourism supplements rather than displaces traditional activities. T h e trend toward 'Integrated Conservation Development Projects'(discussed below), which link conservation with local rural development, exemplifies the new approach (Peters 1991). T h e nature and scale of such integrated projects strives to be consistent with community norms (Jenkins 1982). Tourists can therefore be hosted with minimal disruption to community and household affairs.  II. Bottom-Up Development 2.1 Top-Down vs. Bottom-Up Development  Mundo Maya  conceptual documents profess respect for the Maya and a strong commitment  to participatory planning ( S E C T U R 1991 "A", "B", & "D"). Still, the regional legacy of paternalistic, top-  - 145 -  down planning (see Cockcroft 1983; Riding 1986; Ross 1988 "B"; Long 1989; Hossie 1990; Sinton 1990; Oakley et al. 1991; Uphoff 1991; Blauert & Guidi 1992) prevails.  Locals are ostracized from  program planning (Lack 1990; Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990). High profile projects associated with the program, such as archaeological restoration, relegate the Maya to manual labour ( S E C T U R 1991 "B"). T h e O M M ' s pet concept of 'ecolodges,' furthermore,  requires extensive outside investment and  management to get off the ground (Toriello 1992 "B"; see Natureplace 1991 as well). Locals are simply being spoon-fed the elite's latest recipe for 'trickle down'. Bottom-up development, the core of 'full fare' A T , is highly controversial in Mesoamerica. Racism is endemic among ladinos (Riding 1986; Bruns 1991; MacEoin 1991). When the Maya are not victims of human rights abuses they are objects of scorn (Burgos-Debray 1988) .  This unpleasant  reality is reflected in planning circles. Despite lip service to the contrary, both in general terms and with regard to Mundo  Maya  136  , regional governments continue to regard the Maya as backwards and  incapable of charting their own development course (Wright 1990). Assumptions about the rural poor being opposed to change are unfounded. In Mesoamerica, apathy has developed in most indigenous communities touched by government 'development' initiatives because the top-down solutions proposed by outsiders usually bear no relevance to local needs (Blauert & Guidi 1992). Scepticism, however, by no means implies rejection of everything new.  It is  simply a survival mechanism.  Mexico, with its legacy of Cardenas populism (see Cockcroft 1983), was the first regional country to adopt a participatory platform. President Miguel De la Madrid pledged to create "an Indian policy with the Indians rather than for the Indians" (Riding 1986: 296). This protocol of public participation in policy-making would be extended through legislation to the environmental arena as well (see Tolba & El-Kholy 1992). 136  The Brundtland Commission's reference to community participation (WCED 1987: 330) led other Mesoamerican countries to follow suit. Mundo Maya thus became synonymous in rhetoric with participation. Glen Godfrey, Minister of Tourism for Belize, spoke at length about the importance of community participation in regional ecotourism at the 1993 mangrove conference in Belize (Faust 1993). Belize, Guatemala, and Mexico are all allegedly working in earnest through their tourism ministries to devise culturally appropriate participation strategies (Toriello 1992 "B").  - 146 -  "The Maya, well aware of the limits of corn farming, have a long history of diversifying their economic activities. Successful farming in the Maya area entails investing in low-risk endeavors, low-cost projects, and products adapted to a local micro-environment. The Maya have been characterized as 'conservative' for these values; however, living at risk has promoted a safety-first principle in adapting to the tropical environment" (Kintz 1990: 81). Studies in Latin America and elsewhere have shown that the rural poor "are open to change provided that they benefit from the outcome of the process, and that the risks involved in adopting innovations do not threaten their livelihood" (Diegues 1992: 142).  Communities, for instance, will generally support  a biosphere reserve if they can expect to share in the benefits (Drake 1991 "B"; Pedersen  1991)  through ecodevelopment projects in the buffer zone. 'Full fare' A T enhances a community's subsistence options [see Figure 7].  Indigenous  communities worldwide have recognized this and are devising individual blueprints accordingly (Vivian 1992). A s previously mentioned, the most successful ventures are those tailored to existing livelihoods and traditions. "At this level, tourism is an experiment that minimizes economic and cultural risk. If it fails, people can continue to subsist on agriculture. succeeds, incomes will rise and the community will benefit"  If it  (Williams  1992: 58). This approach also accounts for the seasonality of tourism itself . 137  "Tourism may be said to be 'truly ecological and ethical' when it... supplements or complements traditional practices (farming, fishing, social systems etc.) without overwhelming or attempting to replace them -  P e a k tourism times coincide remarkably well with harvesting schedules in Mesoamerica. The high tourist season runs from January through April (Boo 1990). Crops are not planted until after the first heavy rains, which occur the first week of May at earliest (Bricker 1989). 137  This complementarity facilitates the pursuit of two distinct livelihoods; however, it also highlights the precarious balance between the two. At the El Triunfo cloud forest reserve in Chiapas, villagers acting as guides and supplying pack horses for Victor Emanuel Nature Tours' bird-watching trips receive much of their annual cash income in March (Paxton 1989). If market, political, or natural forces caused the Victor Emanuel trips to be suspended one season, locals would have to wait an entire year for their next chance to earn cash.  - 147 -  making the local economy more robust and less susceptible to rapid change or world economic downturns" (Wallace 1991: page unknown).  2.2 Models for Bottom-Up Development Different models for 'full fare' A T are discussed briefly below [see Figure 8]. T h e s e range from models transplanted via government agencies and conservation or community development N G O s to spontaneous community initiatives. Consequently, some are closer to the 'full fare' ideal than others.  2.2 (a) Equity Partnerships Equity partnerships arise when the host community is in a position to trade access to its cultural, community, and adjoining natural or historical attractions for a percentage of ownership in the inbound c o m p a n y  138  (Lillywhite & Lillywhite 1991 and 1992).  This arrangement generates funds for  village businesses and training (Lillywhite 1989). Locals thereby gain the capital and skills to diversify their economy through spin-off ventures. This model for 'full fare' A T has been applied with varying success.  In Australia, aboriginals  now own approximately 40% of the tours to their traditional territories through joint ventures ( P A T A 1990).  While this sounds promising, it is common in such instances for the community partner to  become a silent partner.  The resultant tourism, often limited by only a temporal contract, is far from  self-directed. T h e majority partner(s) can ignore qualitative costs to the host community, focusing on whatever portion of the A T market deemed most lucrative. This situation has transpired in a principally Japanese-owned development on Mana Island in Fiji (Valentine 1990). There are three prerequisites to success for the equity partnership model.  T h e first, which  eludes many indigenous populations, is recognized title to traditional lands. T h e second is a cohesive  The same revenue-sharing principles apply to co-management agreements between local residents and the national government (Boo 1992 "A").  - 148 -  FIGURE 7:  FULL FARE CRITERIA  Hosts Happy Practice Matches Theory Enhances Local Quality of Life Affirms Community Identity Revival of Indigenous Expertise 'Stimulates Community & Household Vitality' Supplements Traditional Livelihoods Decreases Vulnerability to Market Forces Equitable Sharing of Costs, Benefits & Opportunities Meaningful Participatory Planning Locals can Exercise Their Basic Human Rights Supportive NGOs Commited and Far-sighted Government Local Self-Determination 'Bottom Up' Grassroots Development Tool  - 149 -  community governing body to undertake negotiations and the equitable distribution of profits. T h e third is a commitment to partnership by both majority and minority partners (see Murphy 1986). The O M M is attempting an equity partnership arrangement for its ecotourism lodges.  The  funding proposal submitted to the E E C in January, 1992 is encouraging (Toriello 1992 "B"). T h e first stage calls for the building of state-financed lodges, with locals benefitting through land rental and onthe-job training. During this period a community council would oversee hiring and promotion. It would also allocate revenues to grassroots ecotourism initiatives  139  and eco-development projects in keeping  with local needs and priorities. The second stage, unlikely to materialize under the political status quo, would have locals overtaking management positions and then ownership of the infrastructure itself. Equity partnerships give the illusion of being bottom-up when in reality the host community is quite vulnerable. Very seldom is the external partner actually committed to full-fledged partnership or eventual withdrawal.  Only in special circumstances can this model promote 'full fare' A T .  2.2 (b) Common Interest Partnerships Common interest partnerships accord host communities a stronger bargaining position vis-a-vis their partners than equity partnerships. The external partner is usually a conservation or community development N G O driven by qualitative ecological or social goals rather than profit. T h e s e goals tend to overlap with community priorities and needs. The potential for exploitation is therefore limited. Community interest partnerships often revolve around ecodevelopment projects (see Kutay 1989  "B"; Gonzalez 1993).  These projects are usually found in the buffer zone of biosphere  Low-interest financing would be available through the community council to private entrepreneurs (Toriello 1992 "B"). Spin-off projects might include the harvesting of vegetables for the lodge restaurant or the printing of brochures for community-run cultural interpretation programs. Locals guides could also buy equipment for navigating underground rivers. 139  - 150 -  reserves . The external partner helps locals implement culturally appropriate sustainable development 140  strategies, offsetting project costs by generating public interest and hence special interest tourism (see Damsker et al. 1992).  Such projects, allowing tourists to share in and learn from the community's  normal daily work (see Moreno 1991), provide a forum for the truly alternative and hence 'full fare' tour (Gonsalves 1987). S o m e ecodevelopment initiatives based on the partnership approach involve linkages between the Maya and domestic conservation N G O s .  Amigos del Bosque  (Friends of the Forest) (see Jones  1991) in Guatemala has been a key player in regional bottom-up initiatives.  Its contact with various  communities' pilot projects facilitates information exchange and confidence building. Global concern over the world's vanishing rainforests has also prompted a myriad of North American and European conservation N G O s to partner up with Mayan communities.  T h e Inter-  American Foundation ("IAF") is the external partner behind many Latin American ecodevelopment projects involving tourism (see Reilly 1992). It supports organizations "of and for poor people who lack access to adequate income, information, social networks and participation in the decisions affecting their lives;" increasingly, the projects receiving IAF support "grapple directly with poor people's environmental problems" (Reilly 1992: 332).  In the Mayan region these include agro-ecology and  'classical' conservation efforts revolving around single species (e.g. turtles). Other regional ecodevelopment projects incorporating A T include:  Mayarema:  Mayarema is an integrated  sustainable development  project  run jointly by  Guatemala and U.S. AID. Through this program, U.S. AID is directing $10.5 million U S D over  Conservation International has sponsored a pilot project in the buffer zone of the Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve in Chiapas wherein locals make pictures for sale (presumably to tourists) using the different coloured wings of non-endangered butterfly species (Scott 1992 "B"). The income generated from projects such as this, dependant on an intact rainforest, discourages clearing for non-sustainable subsistence practices.  - 151 -  six years (1992-1998) to agro-forestry, national parks, ecotourism and related projects (Gardner 1991).  Centro Maya: Centro Maya is an Peten.  ecodevelopment project started by the Rodale Institute in the  Through a five-year budget of $5 million U S D project directors  141  hope to reconstruct  the agricultural systems that in ancient times supported eight times the  Peten's  current  population (Damsker et al. 1992). The integration of alternative technologies and contemporary Maya know-how will result in a customized sustainable farming system for the  Peten . U2  Ecotourism is providing crucial funding for the project.  Dzilam Reserve:  Planners and conservation N G O s managing the  Dzilam Reserve  have employed the same ecodevelopment model as that used at  Centro Maya.  are brought in to study resource management practices of the ancient Maya. includes  in M e x i c o  143  Ecotourists The itinerary  "productive activities like wild fruit collection, coconut pulp extraction, lobster and  octopus fishing using traditional techniques, and extraction of a resin from zapote tree trunks that is used in the manufacture of chewing gum. These activities, besides being educational, are examples of local traditional customs involving natural resource use" (Moreno 1991: 423).  Centro Maya is directed by the Rodale Institute in cooperation with Central American research partners and a global team of anthropologists, archaeologists, ecologists and agricultural scientists. The Rodale Institute is a non-profit research and education organization dedicated to worldwide sustainable farming research (Damsker et al. 1992). H1  A sustainable agriculture program for the Peten and Lacanddn is long overdue. Only 16% of the Lacanddn Maya still practice the traditional milpa agriculture (Kurlansky 1985). The rest have copied the mono-crop horticultural practices of ladino settlers, which are ecologically unsustainable in rainforest areas. 1 4 2  T h e 62,000-hectare Dzilam Reserve on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula (between the towns of Dzilam de Bravo and San Felipe) was designated a conservation area in 1989. The first batch of ecotourists - a small group of European students and professors - arrived in September 1990 (Moreno 1991). 143  - 152 -  Research has yet to be done on locals' satisfaction with such ecodevelopment projects. Disillusionment may exist in some areas due to the top-down participation processes often favoured by involved N G O s .  A 1990 report on popular participation in protected a r e a s  144  showed that despite  substantial participatory rhetoric only 3 of the 23 integrated development projects analyzed actually had effective local participation (Peters 1991). In these circumstances the potential for 'full fare' A T remains largely unexplored.  2.2 (c) Community Ownership Host communities stand to benefit the most from locally owned and controlled tourism programs. Their voice and resources are less likely to be dwarfed by those of external power brokers on matters related to representation and privacy.  This is particularly true when powerful allies in  conservation and/or community development circles can be f o u n d  145  .  T h e prevailing economic system is not conducive to indigenous ownership (Johnson 1986; Ashton 1991).  Credit granting, amongst other things, is biased against the poorest of the poor (e.g.  the landless, women) (see Ouchi 1985; Hill 1988; Seetharam 1990). The search for viable bottom-up models that 'put the last first' (see Oakley et al. 1991: 162) has thus been formidable. Aussie-Stone (1992) devoted thirty years to investigating ways to empower impoverished host communities. There are now enough successful village-level enterprises in LICs to affirm the feasibility of bottom-up development.  144  Latin America alone is replete with examples. The Quechua inhabitants of  T h i s report was jointly commissioned by the World Bank, WWF, and U.S. AID.  Community-run AT projects and programs do not preclude strategic alliances with outsiders. Compassionate representatives from the conservation and/or sustainable community development movements quite often undertake invaluable advocacy. In Belize, the Audobon Society has been instrumental locals' efforts to obtain funding for small cabins at the baboon sanctuary (Kutay 1989 "B"). The Toledo Ecotourism Association, meanwhile, has received considerable help from the American expatriate William Schmidt (see George 1992). 145  - 153 -  the tiny island of  Taquile in  Healy & Zorn 1983). The  Peru's Lake Titicaca launched a rewarding tourism program in 1977 (see  Cofen, native  to the Aguarico region of Ecuador, followed suit a decade later  (Hooper 1992). T h e Federation of Indian Organizations of the Napo in Ecuador has since helped other Amazonian communities (e.g. Capirona) establish their own 'full fare' A T programs (see Silver 1992). Many of the success stories are based upon community-owned guest houses.  Indigenous  populations around the world have tailored the guest house concept to their individual needs. Proven operations exist in Papua New Guinea (Ranck 1987; Smith 1992), Fiji (Aussie Stone 1992), Costa Rica (Williams 1992), Senegal (de Kadt 1979; Lindberg 1991), and the Phillipines (Sexton 1991). The notion of community-owned A T operations is just beginning to be explored in  Mundo Maya.  Belize, free of the human rights problems engulfing its neighbours, is the only member country to have self-governed guest houses cropping up. Communities at the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary (Boo 1990) and baboon sanctuary (Kutay 1989 "B") have set up small-scale operations. Still, Belize's most famous example remains the Toledo Guest House Program: "the Toledo Maya Cultural Council, a non-governmental organisation, representative of the grassroots Maya people of Toledo, has a new development programme of its own. The programme, a solely indigenous initiative, will be under the direct control of the people and is expected to benefit a vast majority of the Maya population" (Coc 1989: 71). The Toledo Guest House Program began with a pilot project in Laguna and extended to seven other villages, each limited to one guesthouse with a maximum capacity of eight (George 1992). Guests can do the standard hikes to caves and archaeological ruins; however, they are also exposed to village life through  meals with Maya families, instruction in  ethnobotany and traditional healing, and tours of village focal points like "the water pump at the creek, the four-room school house, a shop with maybe half a dozen candies and canned goods available, and the Pentecostal church" (George 1992: 11).  - 154 -  Programs such as these are without question "full fare' if governed equitably. gain the luxury of choice denied them by demand-side situations.  Locals  This potentially enables  them to control the rate and form of change induced by tourism (Hollinshead 1988). They can dictate everything from how their culture is portrayed to the number and type of visitor (Craugh 1991).  pueblos in the  Guests, moreover, may be subjected to strict behaviour codes.  146  Visitors to  American south-west must not only respect curfews and off-limits areas, but are  banned from photography, sketching, and note-taking (Lamb 1990).  2.2 (d) The Imaginative Entrepreneur Communities within zones friendly to 'full fare' A T have a number of options open to them for diversifying household income.  T o identify these options a community must first  articulate its sense of physical and spiritual place. This process unearths special features that through consensus can be translated into product(s). Community brainstorming has led to a variety of strategies for bottom-up tourism development. Through networking amongst indigenous organizations these innovations have spread, the theories being refined in practice to local needs. They include:  Local Interpretation: Interpretation is the focal point of many indigenous tourism programs (see Silver 1992). Tourists are introduced by their hosts to local livelihoods, arts, and/or beliefs, the medium ranging from the traditional guided tour to story-telling or hands-on learning. Community elders often play a key role in devising the program.  146  Many aboriginal tour companies in Australia require written applications from potential guests stipulating their  reason for visit, plus length of stay, routes etc. (Craugh 1991).  - 155 -  In Mundo Maya several possibilities for community interpretative programs are being explored.  Most revolve around agro-forestry.  Pilot projects relating to ethnobotany  (e.g. the cultivation of medicinal plants), apiculture , and chicle harvesting 147  underway (Toriello 1992 "B"). in M e s o a m e r i c a  149  148  are  Given the growing enthusiasm for extractive reserves  , there is vast potential for such programs.  T h e concept is fast  earning credibility thanks to the slightly larger ecodevelopment programs sponsored by international N G O s .  Bottom-up cultural interpretive  programs, though prevalent in native communities  elsewhere, do not exist in Mundo Maya outside Belize (e.g. the Toledo Guest House  There is a long history of apiculture in the Yucatan. North American bees in hives have replaced wild varieties around Coba; in more remote areas, however, the honey of the colecab (a variety of stingless bee) is still collected from tree trunks (see Kintz 1990: 78). The OMM considers traditional honey harvesting of interest to alternative tourists (Toriello 1992 "B"). 14/  148 Chicle is the latex gum resin obtained from zapote trees (Kintz 1990). The OMM has proposed that certain chicle trails in the Peten be opened to tourists. These trails would be run by chicleros using existing camps, where shelters, hammocks, cooking facilities etc. are already in place. Interested chicleros would attend OMM-sponsored workshops on running a successful tourism enterprise, e.g. guiding techniques, sanitation issues (Toriello 1992 "B"). This idea is transferable to the Lacanddn. 149  Extractive reserves, which provide forthe sustainable harvest of rainforest goods like xate and allspice (see Clay 1992; Diegues 1992; Williams 1992), have proven to be a successful model for bottom-up development (Durning 1989 "B"; Redclift 1992), provided land reform is addressed (Diegues 1992). The repressive atmosphere in much of Mesoamerica has prevented a grassroots movement of the magnitude of that seen in Brazil (see Cultural Survival Quarterly 1991). Several conservation organizations, however, have put extractive reserves on the regional agenda. Conservation International, the Program for Belize, and an American ecologist by the name of James Nations have all forwarded the concept within Mundo Maya, particularly vis-a-vis biosphere reserves (Perera 1989; Conservation International 1992 "D"; Scott 1992 "A" and "B").  - 156 -  Program) . This is unlikely to occur until the Maya are granted a say in the marketing 150  of their own culture and accorded basic human rights.  Hallmark Events: The prominent, if not distinguishing, characteristic for some communities is an event.  This event  is usually pre-existing, e.g. a  traditional  community celebration, with private and public portions clearly demarcated.  However,  some rural communities seeking a niche separate from that of their neighbours will launch an entirely new event. A famous example of this approach is the  Taquile  craft fair in Peru.  Islanders "held  a widely publicised two-week crafts fair in August 1982 at which tourists visiting the island for only a few hours of one day bought several thousand dollars worth of weavings" (Healy & Zorn 1983: 84). It also enhanced  Taquile's image  as an A T destination.  The fiesta and market calendar in such promotion.  This generated capital for community projects.  Mundo Maya  (see Glassman 1990) lends itself to  At present, tourists arrive uninvited and participate on their own  terms. Communities like  San Juan Chamula and Zincant&n  in Chiapas, nonetheless,  have demonstrated that control can rest with the host community. Many communities  The cultural interpretation available in Guatemala, for example, is very superficial. Visitors to Guatemala can learn traditional back-strap weaving in the village of San Antonio Aguas Calientes near Antigua (see Whatmore & Eltringham 1990); however, inquiries regarding the actual day-to-day reality of the Maya are not welcomed by Mundo Maya authorities (Toriello 1992 "B").  - 157 -  in LICs  have now devised ways "to market their own 'indigenousness' to tourists,  without giving up their own sense of value of their way of life" (Vivian 1992: 6 3 )  151  .  Regional Showcasing: The major obstacle facing most indigenous communities endeavouring become 'imaginative entrepreneurs' is their isolation and/or small size. Tourists may deem the journey there too arduous, or not even hear of the initiative. This obstacle is being overcome through regional showcasing.  Regional showcasing is based on the reality that "One community may not have much to hold tourists, but when linked together with other communities in the area or region, a tourist destination-attraction is created" (Weaver 1990: page unknown).  A s Jones  notes: "One practical example is the Mid-Wales Festival of the Countryside, a federated programme of some 600 rural events and activities which combines tourism with environmental education and rural development. The problem of small-scale versus mass tourism is tackled through each individual component being relatively small, discrete and local (e.g. guided walks, farm visits, craft demonstrations), with programme promotion and marketing providing an overall synergy and reaching a large and international audience" (Jones 1992: 103). Rural tourism in Aveyron, France has likewise been facilitated through a regional coordinating body (Moulin 1980).  In Mundo Maya, the foundation for regional showcasing is in place. affiliated N E C s facilitate coordination and coherence.  The O M M and  Now that macro elements like  Sofield (1991) notes that indigenous ownership and control may not necessarily guarantee the maintenance of authenticity, as many communities seeking higher financial returns will adapt their traditional practices to tourists' tastes. This observation opens a controversial debate over cultural change within indigenous communities exposed to tourism.  - 158 -  program conceptualization and marketing have been addressed through these bodies it is time to resolve the intricacies inherent to Mundo Maya as an A T program.  This  task, while chiefly a matter of reciprocal grassroots arrangements, cannot be divorced from overall program planning.  The O M M ' s vision for regional tourism development  must guide communities' creative processes and vice versa.  Producer Co-operatives: Communities establishing their place on a tourist route have captured an audience; the next question to address is how to best exploit it.  While  guest houses and interpretive programs are conducive to longer stays, they have finite earning potential.  Locals must tap into the high demand for mementos such as  handicrafts to realize maximum profit. The sooner a community masters the peddling of its wares, the better its chance of maintaining 'full fare' A T . Higher expenditures per visitor mean lower tourist traffic is required to meet community and household cash needs.  A popular way for individual 'imaginative entrepreneurs' to partake in the tourist trade is through producer cooperatives. advantages.  Marketing through a cooperative has several  It circumvents, amongst other things, middlemen and the problems of  economies of scale (Jenkins 1982; Ross & Usher 1986).  This, coupled with the  democratic and participatory organization structure of cooperatives (see R o s s & Usher 1986; Britton 1987), makes equity easier to achieve  152  .  '^Indigenous artisans receive the smallest share of handicraft sales if not linked into a cooperative (Schurmann 1981). According to Morris (1991), that share can amount to as little as 10-20% of the retail price when determined "by the magic of the free market.' This explains why in Latin America artisans usually fall within the 40% of the population living below the poverty line (Popelka & Littrell 1991).  - 159 -  T h e Mexican portion of  Sna Jolobil weavers'  Mundo Maya  has a number of producer co-operatives.  cooperative in C h i a p a s  153  The  , which is 100% Mayan owned and run,  is highly successful and perhaps the best known (see Porter 1990; Brosnahan 1991; Morris 1991).  Several smaller cooperatives benefit other Mayan artisans . 154  Many  merchandise their wares in Cancun (Scott 1992 "B").  Belize  also  has  artisan  conspicuously lacking t h e m  cooperatives 155  .  (Boo  1990);  Guatemala,  however,  is  Guatemala's political climate is not conducive to  Cooperatives accord the producer control over both the inflow and outflow of revenues. They set non-negotiable prices (Brosnahan 1991), reducing members' vulnerability to tourists advised by guide books to haggle (see Glassman 1990: 153, Whatmore & Eltringham 1990: 27). Profits, distributed through consensus for members' individual and collective needs (Britton 1987), benefit all members equally.  T h e Sna Jolobil weaver's cooperative, established in 1977, has over 600 members in about a dozen Tzotzil and Tzeltal Maya villages in highland Chiapas (Brosnahan 1991; Morris 1991). It operates its own store on the textile strip along Real de Guadelupe in San Cristobal de las Casas, displaying goods village by village. Prices are higher than at neighbouring tourist shops, with some huipiles (traditionally embroidered women's shirts) fetching $500 USD (Morris 1991). However, the quality of weaving is consistently high (Porter 1990). The cooperative allocates a portion of its profits to grants for master weavers in order to revive old technique and designs, sensitizing buyers to the comparative value through member-produced exhibits and educational pamphlets. The benefits are twofold: members earn a fair income (see Morris 1991) whilst gaining pride in their Mayan identity (Brosnahan 1991). 153  S i n c e 1990, the year that Mundo Maya commenced, several cooperatives have emerged under the umbrella of the non-profit Mexican Association of Art and Popular Culture ("AMACUP"). This organization works with regional ejidos and other communities to develop 'ecocrafts' for sale to tourists visiting Cancun and other hotspots (See Scott 1992 "B"). One ejido is manufacturing children's building blocks from 'waste' wood left over from a nearby sustainable forestry project. Women at the neighbouring ejido have set up a complementary cooperative, producing bags embroidered with Mayan motifs to hold the blocks. 154  Cultural Houses, Guatemala's officially sanctioned Mundo Maya program to revive the traditional arts, is a topdown initiative coordinated by INGUAT. Under the direction of the anthropologist Alfredo Gomez Davis, three communities have produced records of their music and several others have intensified their handicrafts production (Toriello 1992 "B"). Producer satisfaction with this program has not yet been documented. 155  - 160 -  cooperative organizing. The widow's cooperative at Tecpa\n on the way to Lake Atitla'n (see Beresky 1991) is among the few  156  .  Conclusion Regional planners' affinity for development strategies consistent with the D S P will achieve little but a bad name for Mundo  Maya.  The drastic consequences of top-down,  non-participatory  development for the poor in LICs are well documented (Kia 1984; Bamberger 1986; Friedmann 1987; Drake 1991  "A"; Kottak 1991).  Fancy marketing cannot spare Mundo Maya a bitter fate if such  methodologies are continued. Optimism, nevertheless, still surrounds Mundo Maya.  A handful of conservation organizations  and development agencies has joined forces with indigenous groups to articulate a 'full fare' vision for regional tourism development. This vision, based on the notion of 'active capture' rather than 'passive trickle' (Cunningham 1991), is a living manifestation of the N E P . It addresses grassroots development through 'bcttom-up' initiatives. Bottom-up  models for A T development  present an opportunity  communities to partake in the benefits of Mundo Maya.  for impoverished  rural  Although some communities are isolated by  tourism Industry standards, all are serviced to some degree by public transit. True alternative tourists compassionately interested in traditional lifestyles and subsistence strategies - will not be deterred by issues of convenience. They will seek out the different if informed that it is there.  T h e rest, not the  type of guest desired by indigenous communities anyhow, will stick to the demand-side enclaves (e.g. Coba\) familiar to them.  In this fashion, demand and supply-side tourism can co-exist.  Other Guatemalan communities have resorted to linkages with foreign NGOs like Mayan Crafts and Trade Wind, which market their handicrafts for a fair price abroad. These organizations, highly committed to fostering producer selfsufficiency, return approximately 50% of the gross income to producers (Clay 1992).  - 162 -  Chapter 10: THE PREREQUISITES FOR SUCCESSFUL BOTTOM-UP DEVELOPMENT  Introduction True or 'full fare' A T can materialize only under very specific conditions. This chapter examines those conditions in light of A T theory.  Understanding them is key to closing the theory-practice gap  presently accompanying most A T .  I. The Three Fundamental Prerequisites 1.1 Government Support for Grassroots Initiatives Successful bottom-up development cannot occur without government support (de Kadt 1979; Cohen  1989  "A"; Lindberg 1991).  Even in industrialized countries "The success of self-help  organizations and projects is sometimes dependent on the ability of organizations to secure services or resources that only governments can provide" (Friedmann 1987: 380). all the more pivotal in LICs.  The role of governments is  The energy, time, and resources that indigenous communities in LICs  must invest to launch an A T venture of their own are all extremely scarce commodities. A community initiating a project without prior legislative assurances (e.g. land title ) (Redclift 1992), preferential 157  L a n d title is probably the most contentious development issue in Mesoamerica (Faust 1993), particularly in the Guatemalan highlands. This area is home to approximately three quarters of all Maya (Wright 1990). In most highland towns the population is 85%-95% indigenous (see Mathewson 1984; Glassman 1990). However, few Mayan families have enough land to subsist, as Guatemala has the most skewed land distribution in Latin America (Wilson 1991). 157  According to the U.S. AID, 88% of Guatemalan farms are too small to support subsistence agriculture (Wilson 1991). The majority of Maya, as a result, are unable to harvest maize and other traditional subsistence crops full-time (Yamauchi 1984; Morris 1988). They are forced to work seasonally on lowland plantations, where pay is exceptionally low and living conditions are harsh (Burgos-Debray 1988). This institutionalization of 'forced' labour is disputed by grassroots organizations. Ongoing land expropriation (see Perera 1989) and political manoeuvring (e.g. the loss of land title certificates by government offices) (Faust 1993), nevertheless, continue to make day-to-day existence precarious for the Maya.  - 163 -  credit arrangements, or other such guarantees from government thus exposes itself to great risk (Altman 1989). Indigenous communities contemplating an A T program typically lack the technical and financial means to enter the marketplace. Several countries, as a consequence, have public agencies dedicated to grassroots support.  The Australian tourism ministry has personnel on board to assist aboriginal  communities through the A T planning process from beginning to end (Craugh 1991).  T h e island of  Vanatu in the South Pacific also has a committed tourism ministry; government legislation and policy formulation there has created the environment for a truly bottom-up village tourism program to flourish (see Sofield 1991).  It is imperative that such agencies have a hiring policy based on compassion.  They must also have an adequate budget to turn policy into reality.  A s Britton (1987: 184) notes,  "financial assistance from government agencies for the purchase of motor boats, refrigerators, or even a mini-bus can turn a village's shaky venture into an income earner". The increasing involvement of conservation and community development N G O s in grassroots A T programs (see Cultural Survival Quarterly 1991) by no means negates the need for government support.  Their presence may alleviate the financial burden of start-up capital; however, the best  conceived A T programs can fall apart in the absence of recognized land title and/or agrarian reform. Lobbying by these groups is often key to securing government assistance for grassroots initiatives (Decock 1991; Clay 1992). In Belize, support from the international conservation community is what enabled locals to establish the Hoi Can Marine Reserve, protecting a portion of the barrier reef from uncontrolled tourism (see Boo 1990).  Many indigenous communities, nevertheless,  have  experienced frustration as outsiders pursue their own agenda(s) under the guise of partnership and cooperation (Gray 1991; Cultural Survival Quarterly 1991; Gray 1991; Gonzalez 1992).  Hence their  increasing focus on articulating their own cases (see Hollinshead 1988) through regional indigenous federations (Gray 1989).  - 164 -  In Latin America as elsewhere deepening poverty and environmental crises (see Durning 1989 "B") have produced a network of indigenous organizations (Lau 1989).  Communities threatened by  tourism and other 'development' pressures have joined forces to affirm and defend their traditional lifestyles (Johnston 1990).  The discussion of common problems and future directions within and  amongst indigenous communities can catalyze exciting new directions. Increasingly, that direction incorporates models for 'full fare' A T . The Maya of Mexico and Guatemala are becoming experienced advocates. Through their own spokespersons (see Wilson 1991; Blauert & Guidi 1992; Nash & Sullivan 1992) they have pressed for changes in regional ethnic, environmental, and economic policy (Blauert & Guidi 1992). This effort "to create a space for local approaches to be transformed into practical projects for autochthonous development" (Blauert & Guidi 1992: 215) is setting the foundation for community experiments with A T .  1.2 Participation T h e most important element of successful bottom-up development is meaningful participation. Community participation - viewed by many government bureaucracies and aid agencies as inefficient (Drake 1991 "B") if not radical (Freidmann 1987) - is actually highly pragmatic (Chambers 1991). Development initiatives proceeding without broad-based and ongoing participation by locals are usually not only culturally in appropriate (Drake 1991 "A"; Kottak 1991) and unresponsive to local needs (Kia 1984; Oakley et al. 1991; Blauert & Guidi 1992), but more costly (Bamberger 1986; Preister 1989). T h e higher success rate of participatory self-help projects in contrast to top-down ones (see Uphoff 1991) makes participatory development compelling on more than ethical grounds (Chambers 1991). "UNICEF is convinced that participatory approaches are the only ones that hold out long-term hope for effective development" (UNICEF, quoted in Friedmann 1987: 379).  It is through discovering  - 165 -  and cultivating its own potential that a community can tangibly improve its members' quality of life (Milbrath 1989). Mundo  Maya  1991 "B" and "D").  is at present a participatory development program on paper only (see S E C T U R Pockets of participation exist at certain ecodevelopment and guest house sites.  By and large, however, the program has unfolded in a top-down manner (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990; Lack 1990): "How are people participating in this ecotourism? It's just a modified version of the same development model. W e didn't ask for it, we aren't informed about it, we didn't participate in it, and other people are setting all the policies... the people have no real options; we are either kept as archaeological pieces or have to fully integrate into the dominant ruling class system" (Gardner 1991: 30). Government-sponsored projects such as the Las Lagartos  Coloradas  ecotourism scheme in Mexico's Rio  Biosphere Reserve employ outdated models for participation that spoon-feed locals a  'solution' (Sinton 1990). Regional planners need not look outside the Mayan zone to appreciate the folly of nonparticipatory development. Other ostensibly participatory projects and programs deviating from bottomup principles have had disappointing results. Development  158  Mexico's famous Integrated Program for Rural  ("PIDER") illustrates well the cost of bureaucratic derailment. Two decades and close  to a billion dollars later there is still no improvement in the rural poor's standard of living (see Oakley et al. 1991; Uphoff 1991; Blauert & Guidi 1992).  PIDER, underwritten by the World Bank in 1973, was Latin America's first nation-wide development program with a participatory mandate (Oakley et al. 1991). Owing to the difficulty of collecting and assessing information on other geographically-scattered, small-scale, and often autonomous participatory development projects, its methodology has been replicated on the continent several times over. 158  PIDER's methodology, though easily embraced by bureaucrats, is too vertical to constitute true participation (Uphoff 1991). Locals have no part in the generating or prioritizing of proposals, let alone the final decision-making (Blauert & Guidi 1992). The 'solutions'implemented have therefore been at odds with the peasant economy (Oakley et al. 1991). PIDER lost its grassroots constituency by treating it as an audience.  - 166 -  In Mesoamerica, development planning is beset with irony.  Regional governments and  businessmen shun meaningful participatory strategies for fear of grassroots empowerment . 159  What  they achieve as a result is grassroots radicalism (see Linton 1987): "For any development project to be successful, it must consult with have the meaningful participation of, and obtain the well-informed consent of all the people... This is the basic and fundamental issue. You can keep pouring money into a development project but it will very rarely achieve its goals and objectives without these very important elements. If these elements are not taken into consideration, it can lead to extreme radicalism as we now see in many parts of Central America" (Coc 1989: 70; see also Srisang 1991). Communities exploited under the D S P and the top-down planning methodologies, promulgating it have lost patience with the fabled 'trickle down' (Perera 1989).  They know that without participation in  decision-making there will be no sharing in profits or other benefits of 'development' (Bamberger 1986; Vivian 1992). Some, like San Juan Mixtepec  in the Mexican state of Oaxaca  Blauert & Guidi 1992), have peacefully initiated bottom-up development. Mayan zone, however, the transition has not been so smooth.  (see Oakley et al. 1991; In the historically volatile  Tourism growth is exacerbating an  already polarized political climate. There have been peasant revolts in the Chiapas  tourist corridor and  ongoing protests at archaeological attractions like Cooa (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990). Mundo  Maya  can do little for regional stability if equity - and hence community participation -  are not addressed. Governments and supporting aid agencies are slow to recognize this. Following the ratification of Mundo Maya in 1989, the World Bank announced a multi-million dollar fund for N G O s  159 Grassroots empowerment may be defined as "seeking to increase the control of the underprivileged sectors of society over the resources and decisions affecting their lives and their participation in the benefits produced by the society in which they live" (Bamberger 1986: 6). This process and the 'conscientization' inherent to it (see Oakley et al. 1991: 195) are viewed as subversive by repressive governments "who equate development with the centralization of power and wealth" (Turner 199): 4). The "development goals of the elite normally preclude increased involvement of the poor in resource management decisions" (Vivian 1992: 53). In Mesoamerica, "There is the fear that the Indians and peasants might achieve just living conditions, but the greatest fear is of their rebellion" (Riding 1986: 298). Self-help groups are therefore endorsed only when a government appointee is at the helm, lest more ambitious and mobilizing organizations take hold (de Kadt 1979; Uphoff 1991).  - 167 -  working at the grassroots level in Guatemala (Krueger 1989).  This allocation, though a boost to  regional democratization, ignored the legacy of institutionalized inequity in Mesoamerica (see Krueger 1989). In the absence of unfettered participation, aid dollars seldom reach the intended beneficiaries. Even Costa Rica, with its more open political system, is unable to account for the U.S. AID, E E C , U N D P and other aid dollars that have been allocated to ecotourism and conservation planning there (Ashton 1992 "B"). T h e present aversion in government agencies to instituting participatory approaches (Wiltshire 1988) must be overcome if  Mundo Maya is  to be 'full fare'.  Many N G O s (see Oakley et al. 1991)  active in Mesoamerica have a commendable record of fostering innovative, bottom-up development programs.  However, "without a supportive economic and political climate, even myriad grassroots  activities cannot create sustainable development" (Krueger 1989: 4).  A s Uphoff (1991) notes, "One  of the paradoxes of getting participation is promoting bottom-up development often requires top-down efforts" (Uphoff 1991: 502). There are several resources available to governments grappling with how to implement participation. While the methodology of participation is still in the experimentation stage (Oakley et al. 1991) , enough micro success stories exist to provide general principles. T h e s e have been elaborated upon in relation to the United Nations' participation-oriented Drinking Water Supply & Sanitation Decade (1980-1990) (see Feacham et al. 1978; Kia 1984; Whyte 1986) and development at large (see Ouchi 1985; Bamberger 1986; Dewan 1989; Forester 1989; Oakley et al. 1991; Uphoff 1991; Blauert & Guidi 1992) .  In recent years they have been refined for the implementation of 'full fare' A T (see Pagans  1990; Drake 1991 "B"; Boo 1992 "A"). Governments can no longer feign ignorance - or look solely to their own precedents as  Mundo Maya  partners are now doing - when designing participatory strategies.  - 168 -  1.3 Human Rights Regional governments must accord the Maya basic human rights for meaningful community participation to occur in  Mundo Maya.  Communities cannot identify, choose, or pursue appropriate  development strategies if denied an open and accessible political process (Robinson et al. 1990). "Participatory development can only grow within a favourable - or at least neutral political space" (Egger & Majeres 1992: 322). T h e issue of human rights cannot be skirted in the discussion of sustainable development strategies like A T .  The Brundtland Commission inextricably linked sustainable development to  grassroots participation, and participation to human rights (see Redclift 1992: 38): "progress will be facilitated by recognition of the right of individuals to know and have access to current information [on the environment]... the right to be consulted and to participate in decision making on activities likely to have a significant effect on the environment, and the right to legal remedies and redress for those whose health or environment has been or may be seriously affected" ( W C E D 1987: 330). A growing number of conservation N G O s like the Rainforest Action Network are making human rights central to their platform (see Vietor 1991). The biosphere and extractive reserve concepts associated with A T grew largely from recognition of the link between conservation and human rights. T h e question of human rights is particularly pertinent with regard to A T in Mesoamerica. The high profile Garrett (1989) article on  La Ruta Maya  in National Geographic made zero reference to  regional human rights problems (Lack 1990), "reinforcing] the notion that tourism is not only benign, but that it is a positive force for the preservation of the Maya, both ancient and contemporary, and that much the same holds true for the viability of actual and projected nature and biosphere reserves" (Daltabuit & Pi-Sunyer 1990: 12).  In reality, there are very specific conditions under which 'full fare'  A T can emerge. T h e most critical factor - human rights - is almost non-existent within Every  Mundo Maya partner  (Berger 1991).  Mundo Maya.  besides Belize has a modern history of ethnocide targeting the Maya  Central American atrocities have received the most press (Richter 1992); however,  - 169 -  Mexico has been just as ruthless in its treatment of the Maya (Nash & Sullivan 1992).  There is a  history of state-sanctioned armed conflict between tourism developers and indigenous communities in Mexico (see, for example, Ross 1988). Regional disregard for human rights precludes any form of sustainable development in Mundo Maya (Krueger 1989). The chronology of grassroots development in Guatemala illustrates why. rise of development-oriented  Christian base communities and cooperatives in the  The  Guatemalan  highlands after the 1968 Conference of Catholic Bishops in Medellin, Colombia (see Durning 1989 "B"; Wright 1990; Berger 1991; Wilson 1991)  prompted severe rural repression. T h e military and local elite  regarded these self-help movements as subversive  160  (Wright 1990; Berger 1991). It converged upon  villages with cooperatives or schools (Wilson 1991), singling out individuals who had learned to read or write for the most demeaning torture and/or execution (Berger 1991).  Heads of development  projects were systematically exterminated, with 168 cooperative leaders murdered in the department of El Quiche alone between 1976 and 1978 (Wilson 1991). By the end of that decade the violence had escalated to the point that foreign aid workers became death squad targets as well (Berger 1991). Several international aid organizations withdrew from the impoverished highlands as a result: "the levels of violence and/or economic crisis in large areas of the country [made] substantive development programs both urgently needed and impossible to implement" (Krueger 1989: 5). T h e human rights situation in Mesoamerica is currently open to speculation. Many hoped that the 1986 election in Guatemala of civilian president Vinicio Cerezo would abate the violence; however 1987 and 1990 were particularly repressive years (Loucky & Carlsen 1991).  the December 2, 1990  massacre of Tzutujil Maya in Santiago de Atitlcin, a popular tourist destination on Lake Atitlcin, attracted  Guatemala's cooperative movement focused mainly on projects concerned with education, health care, and agronomy (Wilson 1991). However, as Berger (1991) points out, it represented a vehicle through which indigenous peasants could press for social and economic reforms. The military, through its scorched earth and model village campaigns, hao sought to eliminate such forums and the ethnic pride fuelling them (see Burbach & Flynn 1984; BurgosDebray 1988). 160  - 170 -  international attention.  The subsequent press, which featured headlines like T h e Calgary Herald's  'Tourist Haven Bathed in Blood: Guatemala Sells Vacations as Police Troops Keep Killing'(Marquis 1991), was potentially destructive to  Mundo Maya.  Cerezo consequently set out to make amends,  becoming the first Guatemalan president to meet with the leaders of traditional Mayan religious and social organizations (Lack 1990). His successor, Jose Serrano, continued this course, allowing exiled Rigoberta Menchii to return and address an indigenous throng at the '500 Years of Resistance Assembly' in  Quetzaltenango  (MacEoin 1991).  Serrano further promised to prosecute human rights  violators regardless of their position and power (Marquis 1991). Whether it will be business as usual in Mesoamerica remains to be seen.  Mundo Maya  has  provided regional governments with strong incentive to clean up their image. Although formerly taboo questions regarding human rights are being raised (Loucky & Carlsen 1991), most observers suspect that military operations will just become more covert (Acker 1993).  Loucky & Carlsen (1991) report  that: "Rather than moderating its policy, the [Guatemalan] army seems to be redoubling its efforts to assert its presence... it continues to play a dominant role in the economic restructuring of the highlands, the effect of which... has been to greatly reduce indigenous political and economic autonomy" (Loucky & Carlsen 1991: 69). Officials are already adept at covering up 'unpleasant' incidents that could disrupt tourism (Brosnahan 1991). O n its present course,  Mundo Maya  is but one more institution inhibiting the realization of  human rights for the Maya. There is great irony in this situation. At first glance, appear to reinforce the political status quo.  Mundo Maya  policies  However, the increasing number of popular uprisings in  Mesoamerica demonstrates that this is not so.  The Mayan people are reacting to this exploitative  system, illustrating just how far their endurance has been taxed. Continued exploitation and repression in conjunction with  Mundo Maya  will only accelerate and spread social unrest.  A s Wilson (1991)  - 171 -  observes with regard to Guatemala, "there is a correlation not between development and insurrection, but between violent repression of development and support for an insurgency" (Wilson 1991: 36). If regional stabilization is desired, local economies must be allowed to prosper through mechanisms like AT.  This cannot happen without political emancipation.  Mundo Maya  planners become indignant when a foreigner broaches the subject of human  rights, rightfully pointing out the impropriety toward native populations on North American soil (Toriello 1992 "B").  T h e North American propensity for relegating indigenous peoples to showpiece roles in  tourism undoubtedly warrants this rebuff; still, it is no justification for repeating a historical wrong. hope that raising the sensitive issue of human rights vis-a-vis  Mundo Maya will  I  alert those involved in  the program to the long-term pitfalls of repressive governance, over and above the tumultuous fallout ultimately accompany systematic injustice. There is no escaping the relationship between sustainability and social peace. Notwithstanding the above, there are less emotional grounds on which to discuss the role of human rights in tourism development.  From a business point of view alone, respecting human rights  makes sense. Tourists avoid areas of conflict (Crazier 1989; Smith 1989; Hazarika 1990; Long 1991). Press leaks about violence in Guatemala caused a dramatic drop in tourist arrivals not just in Guatemala  161  (Harris 1986; Waters 1988; Lindberg 1991) but the entire region, including democratic  International tourist arrivals in Guatemala correlate closely with media leaks about the military's terrorization of the Maya. Between 1970 and 1976 the development of tourism infrastructure prompted visitation to rise from 176,000 to 454,436 (Yamauchi 1984; Michaels 1987). In 1979 503,908 foreign visitors were recorded (Lindberg 1991). Visitation subsequently plunged owing to the Spanish Embassy Massacre and President Rios Montt's aggressive military campaign. By 1984, Rios Montt's most infamous year, international arrivals had dropped to 191,934 (Lindberg 1991). In this period there was sometimes only one room filled at Chichicastenango's popular Hotel Santo Tomas (Harris 1986). Only with the anticipation and installation of a civilian president did Guatemala regain popularity as a tourism destination. Visitation climbed to 250,000 in 1985, 278,000 in 1986 (the year Cerezo was elected), and over 400,000 in 1988 (Waters 1988; Tadeu & Phillips 1989). The promotion of Mundo Maya lured 508,000 foreigners 19891990 (Sullivan 09/09/1991). Tourism revenues thus nearly tripled 1984-1989 (Americas staff writer 1990). 1 6 1  - 172 -  Costa Rica (Harris 1986; Laarman & Perdue 1989; Richter 1992). This translates to enormous foreign currency l o s s e s Finally,  162  .  Mundo Maya  planners should not under-estimate alternative tourists' insight to the  roots of regional disequilibria. Stunted provisions for community participation may initially provide the window-dressing necessary to appease foreign investors and tourists (Faust 1993). However, it is hard to imagine that committed alternative tourists, often on the environmental forefront, are not also sensitized to the twin issue of human rights. More and more environmentalists have taken up human rights causes as alternative forms of development like biosphere and extractive reserves enter the conservation agenda (see Clay 1992; Reilly 1992). Even A T dabblers are bound to discern the truth(s). Nearly every A T guidebook on the region astutely comments (Scarlett & Hunt 1988; Brosnahan 1991), if not passes moral judgment (Lougheed,1988; Whatmore & Eltringham 1990; Beresky 1991), on the endemic violence. Locals hiring themselves out by the hour as guides, moreover, often recount the atrocities (see Marnham 1985: 144, 159). When these testimonials come from children (see Marnham 1985: 139; Wright 1990: 231) they are difficult to ignore. Fancy marketing can ward off moral repulsion in tourists for a short time only.  Marketing  studies have shown that alternative tourists are swayed more by other visitors' and guidebook accounts and the news media than official rhetoric (Ashworth & Goodall 1988).  Mundo Maya  the program as 'alternative' or anything else that is politically expedient. It appears that there are two courses that continuation of present policies in line with wide-scale social unrest.  Mundo Maya  Mundo Maya's  promoters can bill  In the end, truth will prevail.  can take.  T h e most likely entails a  sister institutions of repression, unleashing  The alternative is to participate in the larger definition of and experiment  towards 'full fare' A T .  A t the height of Guatemala's unrest in 1984, tourism grossed only $57 million USD; a well-funded public relations campaign launched in conjunction with La Ruta Maya (see Waters 1988) increased these earnings to $150 million USD in 1989 (Americas staff writer 1990). 162  - 173 -  Conclusion Removing participation from the A T equation produces very ordinary tourism with all its notorious side effects.  It is illogical to assume that "the very paradigm that got us into trouble can  somehow get us out" (Berman 1988: 189).  Clinging to ineffective theories and planning methodologies  when more sustainable ones exist is a recipe for disaster. thresholds for abuse.  Communities, like ecosystems, have  Ultimately, the boomerang effect will prevail.  Those privileged with the power  to shape tourism policy will be humbled by the products of their own greed.  T h e choice is simple:  graciously address normative issues like equity and human rights now, or pay in a cataclysmic fashion later.  - 174 -  THESIS CONCLUSION Many planners concerned about the serious social and ecological impacts associated with the tourism industry now promote a shade of tourism called 'alternative' tourism ("AT").  T h e difference  between regular tourism and A T is that the latter has the connotation of being 'full fare' or sustainable. Often, observers of A T get this impression because of the environmental buzzwords and/or high price tag typically attached to alternative tours. In its true form, A T is a model for sustainable community developed based in theory upon the principles of local self-determination and equity. Communities choosing to host tourists do so on their own terms by refining bot tom-up models for A T development to their particular needs. This process is characterized by broad-based citizen participation.  Networking with other communities utilizing or  contemplating A T as a means to sustainably diversify their economy often occurs. Recognition of basic human rights underpins this participation and information sharing. Confusion now surrounds the A T concept, as it has been appropriated by the tourism industry for marketing purposes. The set of tourism activities commonly labelled as 'alternative' (e.g. adventure and ecotours) is actually a sub-component of the notorious mainstream tourism model. It is demanddriven, and hence no less exploitative of host communities than regular tourism.  Visitation grows  exponentially, unleashing the same types of negative social and ecological impacts. T h e gap between the theory and practice of A T may be attributed chiefly to a spillover of planning methodology.  Tourism ministries steeped in the Dominant Social Paradigm ("DSP") have  approached A T from a top-down perspective, excluding locals from key phases of the planning process. This,  combined  with  the  standard  cost-benefit  analysis  techniques  accompanying  traditional  development planning, masks the extent of the costs associated with pseudo A T . True A T , defined in this thesis as a product of the New Environmental Paradigm ("NEP"), is based on an entirely different set of principles than regular tourism.  These principles, publicly  - 175 -  applauded since the publication of the Brundtland Report, remain a source of great anxiety for politicians.  References by governments to participatory development are thus very misleading.  normative facets of the sustainability debate have yet to be digested.  The  Most people can agree upon  sustainability as an ideal; few, however, accept the emerging prescriptions for achieving it. Only once the hurdle between current planning practices and promising innovations like 'full fare' A T has been crossed will sustainable development become a reality. T h e quandary facing communities attracted to the A T concept is that such bottom-up initiatives require top-down support in order to succeed. The gap between the theory and practice of A T will not close until governments recognize and accept their role in bringing about sustainability.  In the  meantime, it is vital that academics continue to differentiate between A T as interpreted and manipulated by the travel industry and the A T model for sustainable community development now being successfully experimented with at the grassroots level. If tourism purporting to be 'alternative' is not distinguished from that which is truly 'alternative,' a promising body of development theory could be discredited, if not discarded. In the my view, blame for the derailing or outright abandonment of the A T concept would fall not on the obvious perpetrators of the status quo, but on all those criticizing the vehicles of exploitation from their desk.  Half-heartedly advocating change from a position of knowledge and/or power is  tantamount to condoning what prevails. O n e cannot take seriously the advocate that is an armchair hypocrite. Alternative visions for a sustainable future will manifest only once planners confess their own role and stake in traditional approaches to development. commitment from the heart.  Catalyzing meaningful change requires a  One is not empowered to inspire others to a new understanding until  connected with his/her own complexities and contradictions.  Compassion for others - be it the  community eking a living out of the rainforest or the corporate executive pressing for a continuation of  - 176 -  conservative policy - grows out of compassion for oneself. The paradigm shift represented by models like A T starts at home and proceeds by example.  - 177 -  BIBLIOGRAPHY  Above the Clouds Trekking.  1991/92 Brochure. Worcester, MA.  Acker, Alison. 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No.  Appendix 1  JOURNEYS UNLIMITED  COMPANY  Adventure travel  Adventure travel  Self-contained luxury ecocruise  Women Only  SPECIAL FEATURE  "Fiestas & Markets of Guatemala"  "Ruta Maya"  "Exploring the Maya Coast"  "Guatemala"  TRIP NAME  London, Eng.  EXODUS ADVENTURES  New York, NY  SPECIAL EXPEDITIONS  Santa Fe, NM  MOUNTAIN TRAVEL/ SOBEK 2 other MM trips "Classic Maya Explorer"  "Belize- Yucatan Loop"  Adventure travel  El Cerrito, CA SAFARICENTRE  Adventure travel  "The World of the Maya"  2 other MM trips  Adventure travel  H  H  W  14 Days  9 Days  11 Days  23 Days  10 Days  10 Days  TRIP DURATION  O 15 Days  <° < TJ  a c/>  $349  $1195  $1995  5 nights hotel not included  $1477  $3260  Excludes food  $1450  PRICE (U.S. dollars)  g o 2 >  Food not included  >  o rri m O m o D TJ  CO  $326  $145  DAILY $ AVERAGE  c  3  m  $2790  O m TJ TJ O CO  $181  $133  $186  Ol  Manhattan Beach, CA GREEN TORTOISE San Francisco, CA WILDERNESS TRAVEL  Berkeley, CA  <2 <*> cn  <s> ro  -207  CO 03  "Our adventures actively promote cultural preservation, conservation, and environmental protection"  No pampering; self-service trip  Action; nature  Self-discovery and renewal  Action; no catering to 'creature' comforts  Meet locals  Camaraderie  CORPORATE RHETORIC  None  None  None  None  None  $500 to U.S. Treasury to reduce national debt  None  CORPORATE DONATION  None  None  None  None  None  None  None  CORPORATE DEEDS  CO <  - 208 Appendix 1  NATURE EXPEDITIONS INTERNATIONAL  COMPANY  Opportunities to communicate with locals through anthropologist guides; lectures  SPECIAL FEATURE  "Zac Beh  "Guatemala Expedition"  TRIP NAME  ivicxicu, L/.r.  ECOGRUPOS DE MEXICO  Eugene, OR 'Educationally enriching' adventures  "Living Maya"  Ecological Interpretation  Credits granted from W. Illinois University  Costa Rica  "Guatemala Discovery & Adventure Safari  "Highlights of the Maya Civilization"  Mundo Maya"  Cultural interpretation  FAR HORIZONS CULTURAL DISCOVERY  San Anselmo  MEXI-MAYAN ACADEMIC TRAVEL Chicago, IL OVERSEAS ADVENTURE TRAVEL Chicago, IL  CD 50 | "o m  11 Days  9 Days  9 Days  14 Days  10 Days  TRIP DURATION  01 c o  $2132  $2095 $2295  $1920  w w < c  Includes airfare from stipulated U.S. gateways  $2590  $185  $175  $255  $233  $153  $159  DAILY $ AVERAGE  O $1590  PRICE (U.S. dollars)  li  14 Days  m  m  2  >  0  o  Authenticity  "We believe that to truly understand an area... we must... understand how the people live... what they think of their government..."  "Ecogrupos  Cultural sensitivity  CORPORATE RHETORIC  None  None  None  None  CORPORATE DONATION  None  None  Purchase locally  None  None  CORPORATE DEEDS  considers itself as an ecotourism operator, in the strictest sense of the term"  Tropical adventure  $45 group donation to IVIonteverde Reserve (for slide show)  S o  Appendix 1  -209  TRIP NAME  TRIP DURATION  PRICE (U.S. dollars)  DAILY $ AVERAGE  CORPORATE RHETORIC  CORPORATE DEEDS  SPECIAL FEATURE  CORPORATE DONATION  COMPANY  Not stipulated  $103  None  $1240  Appeal for vigilance re: pending dams on Usumacinta  12 Days  None  River preservation advocacy in U.S.; office recycling  Cultural and ecological interpretation  and generates funds towards conservation and education initiatives in Belize"  L,UI i ii i IUI nuco  'We... are committed to the preservation of our environment"  $1/day/trip participant donated to Comite Pro Defensa de los Rios de Costa Rica (optional)  "Coral to Rainforest"  $160  $133  $1600  $120  10 Days  9 Days  $103  $111  $929  $995  9 Days  9 Days  None  Kayaking; ecological emphasis  3 other MM itineraries offered "Rio Usumacinta" "Rio Jatate"  Costa Rica  "Rio Jatate; Agua Azut'  None  ISLAND EXPEDITIONS  Whitewater rafting  Whitewater rafting  Whitewater rafting  2 more MM trips offered  Nature  "Each trip is carefully designed so that it supports the economy of local  Vancouver, Canada FAR FLUNG ADVENTURES  Terlingua, TX ARIZONA RAFT ADVENTURES  Flagstaff, AZ SLICKROCK ADVENTURES Moab, UT  Appendix 1  - 210 -  TRIP NAME  TRIP DURATION  PRICE (U.S. dollars)  DAILY $ AVERAGE  CORPORATE RHETORIC  CORPORATE DEEDS  SPECIAL FEATURE $158  CORPORATE DONATION  COMPANY  $2520  Not stipulated  16 Days  None  Ecological emphasis  "Dedicated to worluwide nature conservation through travel"  Not stipulated  "Guatemala hlighlands, Tikal, and Copan"  None  QUESTERS WORLDWIDE NATURE TOURS New York, NY $195  "Maya & Aztec"  24 Days  21 Days  $2235 Cdn.  $1495  $93 Cdn.  "You can feel... the price paid for progress...You can put something back"  $1950  Adventure travel  "Indian Mexico and Yucatcin"  10 Days  Not stipulated  Costa Rica  "Our itineraries are designed... to gain insights into what the world looks like from the perspective of the local people... we share local concerns for both  None  Not stipulated  'Small group exploratory holidays'  Increase intercultural understanding with minimum of cultural and environmental damage  environmental pollution and cultural erosion"  None  Adventure travel; ecological emphasis  ABOVE THE CLOUDS TREKKING  Worcester, MA ENCOUNTER OVERLAND  L-UHUUII, oiy. EXPLORE  Aldershot, Eng.  -j  </>  Appendix 1  (a) -211  JOURNEYS INTERNATIONAL  COMPANY  SPECIAL FEATURE "Ruta Maya Odyssey"  TRIP NAME  Nature photography; organizes tour for non-profit conservation organizations  Costa Rica  "The Usumacinta: River of Ruins"  "Belize: Reef & Ruins"  2 other MM trips unci cu  "El Triunfo"  Costa Rica  Environmental and crosscultural education  Birding and natural history tours;organizes tour for nonprofit conservation organizations  Interpretive emphasis  2 other MM trips offered  Commitment to supporting small-scale locally defined projects  Ann Arbor, Ml VOYAGEURS INTERNATIONAL  Ithaca, NY ELZINGA ADVENTURE  Toronto, Canada VICTOR EMANUEL NATURE TOURS Austin, TX  SIERRA CLUB OUTINGS  San Francisco  O 73 m -o O  73 m o w  a  16 Days  TRIP DURATION  $1895  $2125  PRICE (U.S. dollars)  $1865  11 Days  9 Days  $2760  $2590  10 Days  q  m C w Ui o a > m —i mm a to CD O  S73 N  14 Days  o $1975  00 11 Days  o  o o  ?  > o  $180  $185  $172  $133  DAILY $ AVERAGE  Ecotourism  Ecologically and culturally respectful tourism  "Our goal is to provide lowimpact travel that is environmentally sound and culturally sensitive"  "Leave more than footprints"  CORPORATE RHETORIC  Ongoing support of local ecoldevelopment programs  Donates 3% of pre-tax profits to Cultural Survival (Canada)  Donations to a variety of nonprofit conservation organizations  Donations to a variety of nonprofit conservation organizations  CORPORATE DONATION  Extensive fund-raising via newsletter, promotional trips etc.  Educates clients re: local culture and ecology  Solicits funds and new members for conservation organizations  Earth Preservation Fund  CORPORATE DEEDS  Links clients with local activists  Conservation  $276  $207  3  Fund-raising trip for Sierra Club's conservation efforts locally and elsewhere  Ui  -211 (b) Appendix 1  mm x o  o<  0> 0) 3 3 A) o  3  d >S 71 <; n m m ° cozr;  °  rjn co  CL O  2 c  H 3 O 3 z m co 71 "o o !2 <5 O 3 o 3 -5 °  w a. «" o = 25  GO  rn ca  CD  ro  11  •S 2. o  N' ro ®  3  IQ (D  2rf >< E  « s-  ^-01 0)  cn  a  crorotoaigw-a  ro" 5 2? ororo =;3<D)<(DroS o 3 J o </>  S I n 2  § i o  °ro<• to a>  ^ <q co  w' ro 3 « 0)  co -n S « c  - * 0 ) 0 > 3 S  (  ,  )  CO CO  CO  to CO  a> ro g- ott>o o 3 o 3 o § = <=; o if a> 9 : 3 3 3 3 - <" ^1 < o cr c 2. » 3 2. 3 g S ro S <* - m —1 J — a> . 3  f  i s  CL  O D  c o  D  " 3 ? m  SL 5'  CO «  o. J ^ ' ro  i ° <  0)  Q. O CO (I) Q. qr roroc o n> -i  % » a; a £ o &i g §.•§ 8. 3  5' ffi « 5• _ 3 3 (Q 3  8a  m n 73 O 2 -n TI m o o 0 c ro <> i ro5. =. ?>  S «»  1  cri O—ti — 3- 3" S. o  II  s i r ? *S - §  Appendix 1  - 212 -  COMPANY  Non-profit organization  SPECIAL FEATURE "Yucaten-Maya Kingdom"  TRIP NAME  13 Days  TRIP DURATION $1495  PRICE (U.S. dollars) $115  DAILY $ AVERAGE  CORPORATE RHETORIC  $107  $52-$77  $1495  $2325  $520 $500  "Everyone wants to change the world... Amigos gives you a place to start"  14 Days  10 Days  4 or 6 weeks  "Guatemala"  10 Days  "Mexico"  "El Salvador  economists"  GATE "connects participants with the marginated... GATE offers the opportunity to learn from the poor as well as from social and political analysts, theologians, and  "Vanishing Rainforests of Mexico"  EARTHWATCH  Alternative tourism designed to build constituency for human rights and related social justice issues  Non-profit organization  Non-profit organization  "Our hope is that you'll leturn home a shareholder in the quest we all share to imnrnvp thp IMIUIUVC 11 IO quality of life worldwide"  Watertown, MA AMIGOS DE LAS AMERICAS  Houston, TX GLOBAL AWARENESS THROUGH CHANGE ("GATE")  La Crosse, Wl  to  Ol NJ Ol O  to  Donates medical and school supplies to rural communities  Built into volunteers' share of project cost  Built into volunteers' share of project cost  CORPORATE DONATION  Post-trip commitment to consciousness raising re: human rights etc. (public speaking, slide shows, craft displays etc.)  Public health and sustainable development project support  Conservation and community development project support  CORPORATE DEEDS  - 2 1 3 (a) Appendix 2  S?  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CD 3 01 3 IQ O  < 6 S"£• CD -  3  >  o  1  3"  2 3  O <°  CD CO CO0> Cr ^ 3"" 3 rc S 0)  0  m  X  oi at  co o <» CO  CD  S°  o 3  CD  01  §• 3 3 CO N  z > 3 m  3  3 E. o  § &  cB  ' CD 01 CD Co cf  3  O  TJ  01 CD  H  co  TJ  c  01 CO CO ^-  CD 01 3" N' 3 . °-R" Qi » CO' 3 ai 3 O C CD" T J i.. 0) 01CO CD _  0  m  ol  51  oi =i co  _™ S- oi  TJ >  m< m o c-o  >  it  01  S oi it 9: S" N a * "  o 3  O  i s  co  I  at  "5  S  z -<  sr  CO CO  01  2  o  c  CD CO  S TJ CO  0 (D  3 O <U  c ST  o> o  0)  3" ">  0) -i 5T  s -<  71 < rn  m co X TJ TJ m mo  CD  <= o  c  CD  m—  >=  H >  2 2° S<  O  Z "Tl H > 71 71  CD Q)  CO  0)  H O m TJ  pott  >  m r- CO  D CD TJ O  71  O  CO  F5' 3  (0 01  s i n  5 < ro 01 ai  3 S Z cr c  ro c»o> CO CO  CO  o < ro  3-  ui co > 3  <9 o cp a 10 = at — u>  &I 0 01  o o  ro  5T  ^2  O O -n TJ  cog  TJ  Q c  £- ro CD -i " O' 01  m c o  3  3  D  CO  TJ  o c  3 ai  TJ CO N  m ro p o 01  ro ro ro  01 CT CD  O  3  ro a Q.  ro  O  3  ro a  Q. — O" CD  -<  ro a ro a  ><  3 3  CD  0  ro  01 a ; ro  O  2 o  CQ >  CO  o  CO  O 3 U 0C O 1 N' -  00 CD 3 | 3 > 0o m CD w S- 3 C CD o_ 0 . 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SJ o CO  0)  01  ro NJCQ CD  CQ  U-  O  O  ^  " ai — I n i  [ro & 9 I o jo ro o cn ( a -* r-  O W <CD =o•i_ O  ro w s; 3 — *<" co^  TJ ^ O 01 > P > <2. 3" g ui o0 ii. 01 3  NJ 0 01  o  o  c a m co  O)  o  o  O c  73  TJ CO  N  v< a. 3" 01  O C D 0)  CT  CD  z o  H  m m  3  O our  01  ro o  m o  CO  CD  TJ  mm  TJ M  -'»• CD  >  E  S H  3  ° I  CD Oo  3"  3 3  w  i* CD  CQ  -3  o o  CD  •s  0 C D 0D 1 C CT  CD  •<  CD  CT CD  CD  CO 73 73 m  o  "el  •S  C D 0) CT CD  3  - 215 Appendix 2  c  H  a  2 < m co zm  >  TJ  C g >  H  >  >  Tl  C • >  2 <U m c o zm 2 o 73 N H  mm 7)  <  73  w z r • c z  -n  O o  1*  c  m  „ g  o 3'  S 5  TJ  >  o z  co  c? 5  1ai ° '  3  H  (D  o  o o  co m$ 2 a  o < 3 3 0 ) o a. o  92. ? O  73 TJ Z  CD =  > 3  >  m  ST  Q. CD co •§  0] 01  CD  CD  5  01  (0  i 01  CD  of  a!  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CD  ft"  a  -Q  c  CD  CD CD 0 3 CD  J  3 N 01 CD  7)  >,  3  m !=  TJ >  71  m -< co  m  -  s co  o o  O  o  2*  H  at  0)  8»  TJ z >  o cn  TJ  TJ  "2  o  a c  3" o  •5 9  CD Co 3 E? •O 3 CD TJ  St  §  3  3 &  co CD  Q>  CD  i  °- §  TJ CD  si. CD 3 f?  o  CL CD  O  8f3  Q. § •S C D CQ — CO C D  01  j? O»l ao 57 3 ro CO TJ ro  *S  3  3>  g *<  o. S  oi > r 5  a  => >  a3  aa3 a 2  OJ  CD  '  m  °- a- "  O _k O cn S o  362  c 3  3  cr CD  a S S 5 o  Q. CQ CD  ro oC>O f  o o  o cr  ='T§  ro  x go  CD & ,g- CD 0) B) CD CO CO D 5 C < - — 3•  £ op ap >9 3  CO  m —i CO m  3  *a  CQ 3  a3  O O OJ  ai"? CD  Q c o m co  cn CD 00  3  3  OJ  OJ  ro *o < 0 ro 01 CT CD  -< CD  o  3 OJ 3' c 3  3  ><  01  CD •o <  0 ro 01 CD  cr  -<  CD  ro 0 ro 01  cr  CD  -<  CD  io 0  Q.  1  CD CD  -< CD  N  om o o>  3  CD O cn 3  m mH Tl a mo r O TJ  < I % 8  •o>  M -  Q. < > 3. 0) ~  01  . E ro  QJ =  CD r-  —• S 01 3 CD _. _><=•. g § I  TJ  3  >  & i f  <  CD  CD  fif  CD CD 3  O CO s7a.§' =ro 5 "a > --~.9 co  Tl  °s ^ 3 CO 1 -  CD  CQ  5  flj CO CO CD  c  0  m  ro t\  CD  o cB  CO  =: CD  -—' T J TJ  cr  TJ CD  92. c  CD O  I f 01 0)  3  cj  1  O O  d m <  m  o o  <  O  5T  E.  ID  Zz 7 > H  m z 5 G>  . ~  CD  5  (D TJ O C TJ CO N m  o o  3  -217(b)Appendix 2  01 3 01  01 3  01  <=  =< > s  m m x o 2 m co°  0 < o Q. O  m m g  c —I 3 O 3 3 2  z o  z  CO X  CD  •a o CD  7)  co ^  2.  N'  Dl «^  <<>  ~= SL  00  ai  s  co  01  o7  i  CO  01  2 2 op < <L 2 <S N  CD  =. ^ P S  o??  co o 01 3 7T  01 3  CO —I co' !? j» ^73  oi o CD V CD C 3 3 O  CO CO " 01  « 0  3. 01  S? cp_ N'  CD  sS  CD co CD o •< 3 oi  £1 5 .y  O oi" oi 01 >< 0 CO CD "  §•••0  TJ  . * CO  I.?3 01  ST  CO oi  0  3"  3 01  "2. B Q.  ~ -I CD  2 °- p O ^  CO  CO  §  si CD; K 5' 3 3. & CD  CD CO TJ CD CD ™ (o S  o  —I C C C CoD  B S". COS.. *•§ 3  i » CO CQ 01 C 3 01 O CO gi » 01 N  >3  3!  1  a i oi ral  s  01.  .«  3 -  9  g FF  Co c  ci u » 5" CD S  " TI O oT °  a. cr o ox 3 CD C  c co c:  3  3  .3  ST | 5 T3 ?i co  ago,  3.  CQ  _  PES  ju-  01  CO  § it |  3  CQ p Q 01  CQ  c  3  01  2  -a.  aoi oi co o i— 2 T> o 3 s o S. S 2. 8 2 3 o co' 3 <o Po 3 ju oi w CO  CO cr CD O n CO P T> O "L SS o *H 5 £.« £ &T -i3 01 Q. 3 CD 01 3 7 3" Q. co' £ Ol' < C 3 CD »  1-3 ?  «z  i sa o  9- CD  CD CO  Ol  o  O M  01  S  O O Q.  t 01  CD  -< CD  -218 Appendix 2  i  01  g 3  iI-  O m cn _= m c Q  vi  (0 CD  CO  m co  o 3  * 2  TJ  o rJ  S  o m  g  o  3> >  CD 3, O  O O  >s TJ  < m  > Sr  >  CO CD  3  01  ai  3  2  o 7T O  01  o CD O CD C a. 3  o-  cn  (D• q .  m  —  $  cn  :  3  9  g  n  3 o" 3 . cn ™ -< CO - • CD a.  2 5-  CD' »  fi> U  i  o  <n  CD cn CD  3"  CD  =  m  o o TJ < TJ o O  3  s  5" f 9 CD  W  TJ CD 2 : cn O CD 3 01 0J  3  lis! Ill I S: CD  O  5= 2  CD  £  cd cd q_  O  CD 3-  1  1121  m  CD  -  H TJ  O*  I' o  IS o  I3J W CD O  1 — 25 2 3  i  cn O  cn  ~  >3 01  co  0 -a 3  o TJ_ ai_ cn o ' cn ai  •g oT  c D m co  3 01 cn cn T J *< o <° §. 2 CD >< CD CD cn  w  •9 -5-  O TJ 3 O TJ_ 01 cn o ' cn ai  O O » cn  co  T. 3 TJ_ 0j_ o " OJ  CD  TJ O c TJ CO N  m  tj  CD o CD 01 cr CD  t)  CD O •<  0  CD 01 CT CD  Z o  2 O " OJ  I3  z o  CD TJ TJ m O o 0  xZ Q  CD  o  q_  ~  mm m g 1 — o o m O d co O H mc (0 D  all I CD  cn cn ai CD oi  > CO  O CO o'  2. t)  =  01 co  o  3  ai CD O O  =: CD  2 <° S  3 & 3 =; 5L 01  m  sr<*  & CD =  m  3  ~H  (a w  i< CD  3 5> 6' 3  •< 01  " 01k  3-1ST  &  1(a5  3  sr.  01  a . CD  • a nj oi sr 6T _« CD cn  2 3 O cn q  3  TJ TJ z >  S  co oi  J  01  01  i t  5 >  9  3  co cn • oi ~ '• 3N CD 3  sb  q.  cn 3 .-»• cq cn  ' 2 <  cB  CO  8= C9D £^  m 3  TJ  t) J S>. §•  —• 3, 2  01  01  •a ai  s  0c  CO  c TJ m m  TJ CO  - 219 Appendix 3  MAP  1: THE MAYA WORLD (Including Archaeological Sites & Biosphere Reserves) (Source: Garrett 1989)  Linking the Maya world  •  Archaeological site  ^l"- International airport National park/biotope I  I Selected area set aside for protection Paved road Unpaved road, all-weather Unpaved road, dry season  E  N F O L D I N G a priceless wealth of Maya sites, La Ruta Maya would transcend political borders to unite five nations with a shared Maya heritage: Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and E l Salvador. A key element of the project would be a 1,500-mile route connecting Maya sites and providing visitors with access to remote areas. To minimize road building, planners suggest supplementing existing roads with low-impact alternatives such as monorail, cable car, riverboat, mule,  "Tuxtla* Gutierrez-  j  e  --fp " . < ^•J^^Comrtin' 3  5 T i \ j ~ . "N  ancan Cozumtl  1  Presodela Angostura  Tap!  or foot trai Another key step is to halt the indiscriminate cutting of endangered rain forest Instead of ruining the land for short-term gain, properly managed biosphere reserves would yield longterm benefits by boosting local income through tourism and the harvesting of renewable rain forest products like fruits, cacao, coffee, oils, and medicines. NG* CARTOGJIAM4K MVOKM OCSICN: OAVIO f. CHANOUN RESEAKCN: SAf <U1U«. UNO* «. KNIITf 'ROOUCtlOM: yicm McANAU-CN-PNATT. MARTIN j . 604.DCN MAP EDITOR: 6US RIATIS. JOHN t. NIOIIS  - 220 Appendix 3  MAP 2:  SAN CRISTOBAL DE LAS CASAS & SURROUNDING TOWNS (Source: Vogt  1990)  -221 Appendix 3  MAP 3: BIOSPHERE RESERVE ZONING (Source: Tolba & E!-Kholy 1992)  . A model biosphere reserve. A totally protected core zone is surrounded  by a  buffer zone within which scientific research, carefully controlled tourism and limited traditional  I  I Transition area  land uses are permitted.  M Monitoring site S  Settlement  U Traditional use area T Tourist site  

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