Keywords: adaptation, climate change, Finland, nature-based tourism, summer tourism, tourism entrepreneurs, winter tourism, entrepreneurship, weather variation, market changes
Perceptions and adaptation strategies of the tourism industry to climate change: the case of Finnish nature-based tourism entrepreneurs
Climate change-related processes have emerged as major issues in tourism development and management, particularly with respect to nature-based tourism, which is seen as especially vulnerable and is the sector of the industry that is the main focus of this study. The aim of the paper is to identify the perceptions and adaptation strategies of Finnish nature-based tourism entrepreneurs on climate change. The case study was conducted by interviewing nature-based tourism entrepreneurs in northern Finland and the Finnish Lake District, south east Finland. In general, the entrepreneurs were aware of the issue of global climate change. However, half of the interviewees did not believe that the phenomenon actually exists and will influence the region's tourism industry in the future. The scepticism towards the climate change may explain the fact that there were almost no adaptation strategies. However, other adaptation mechanisms were used to cope with the 'normal' weather variation and market changes.