Gendle co-authors article on community tourism development efforts in Sri Lanka

The article by Mathew Gendle, director of Project Pericles and professor of psychology, will appear in the next issue of the journal Tourism in Paradise.

Mathew Gendle, director of Project Pericles and professor of psychology, has co-authored an article entitled “Sarvodaya and Elon University: A Model for Transnational Partnership in Community Based Tourism (CBT)” that will be appearing in the forthcoming issue of the journal Tourism in Paradise.

Mat Gendle, professor of psychology and director of Project Pericles

This article outlines work in Sri Lanka that Gendle and Elon’s Periclean Scholars program have been engaged in to promote CBT efforts, in partnership with Sarvodaya, the largest and oldest NGO in Sri Lanka. This work is co-authored by Bandula Senadeera, the Director of Sarvodaya’s International Unit.

Traditional models of tourism in Sri Lanka, where communities have often been treated as resources to be exploited by external groups for profit, have resulted in multiple negative consequences, including communities failing to receive the full economic benefit of these activities. CBT initiatives strive to correct these concerns, by: 1) creating sustainable income streams that facilitate the development of local employment opportunities and reduce material poverty; 2) improving local capacity to self-generate and sustain a variety of economic initiatives that focus on local growth; 3) increasing economic and social equity and inclusion for women, ethnic minority and indigenous peoples, and youth that lack access to opportunities for education and job skills training; 4) facilitating actions to conserve natural and cultural resources; and, 5) generating meaningful markets for local goods, services, and skills.

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Tourism in Paradise is a richly illustrated academic journal that is published by the Department of Tourism Management at Sabaragamuwa University in Sri Lanka, whose mission is to bring together academics and tourism providers in Sri Lanka for constructive dialogue regarding economic development and ethical practice.