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Peace through Tourism: Critical reflections on the intersections between peace, justice, sustainable development and tourism

Guest Editors

Dr Freya Higgins-Desbiolles, University of South Australia

Dr Lynda Blanchard, University of Sydney

Ms Yoko Urbain, Co-convenor of Peace Tourism Commissionof International Peace Research Association,  Japan

Journal of Sustainable Tourism

The Journal of Sustainable Tourism is a leading tourism journal which advances critical understanding of the relationships between tourism and sustainable development.

Language: en-US

Publisher: tandf

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“United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 16:  Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels”

This call for papers is inspired by the catalyst of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG 16 focused on peace, justice and strong institutions. This particular goal makes it clear that sustainability is dependent on peace, justice and sound governance. The tourism industry, as represented by the World Tourism Organization, has not identified goal 16 as a particular goal of focus in its commitment to the UN SDG agenda, instead focusing on tourism in marine environments, tourism’s contributions to economic growth and employment and tourism’s role in securing sustainable production and consumption (http://icr.unwto.org/content/tourism-and-sdgs). This seems a lost opportunity considering that tourism is a catalyst to some of the world’s largest peaceful movements of people and that it is a key facet for intercultural interactions today.

The interest in the connections between peace and tourism was fostered in the 1980s when Louis D’Amore (1988) first presented the concept of peace through tourism (PTT) in a context of the Cold War and concerns with how terrorism and violence were impacting the tourism industry. He founded the International Institute for Peace through Tourism. IIPT has described the concept of PTT as:  “travel and tourism initiatives that contribute to international understanding, cooperation among nations, an improved quality of environment, cultural enhancement and the preservation of heritage, poverty reduction, reconciliation and healing wounds of conflicts; and through these initiatives, helping to bring about a peaceful and sustainable world” (https://peacetourism.org/vision-and-mission/). Through this articulation, it is clear the PTT has a broad remit, well beyond narrow peace and conflict issues associated with tourism. Moufakkir and Kelly (2010) offered an edited volume that considered tourism as a positive, progressive force for promoting peace at local, national and international levels.

Blanchard and Higgins-Desbiolles (2013) proposed a complex and critical approach, arguing that PTT is dialogic and not as simple as describing a few “good” niche segments of tourism.  They also proposed a pedagogy of peace that sought to place scholars, industry, critics and communities in conversation about processes for building shared futures.

In this call for papers, we define  “peace through tourism”  broadly: it may include critical analyses of “responsible” niches of tourism (social tourism, pro-poor tourism, volunteer tourism, etc.); it may also include examination of tourism occurring in conflict and post-conflict situations (Causevic & Lynch, 2009); it may look at in/justice issues in tourism and structural violence; it may occur on many levels from the self, to the interpersonal, to the community/ destination, to the nation and the international; and it may involve multiple stakeholders beyond the myopic focus on the interests of tourists and the tourism industry. In summary, peace tourism investigations seek to interrogate the complex and challenging issues of tourism by opening a dialogic space for many voices and perspectives to critically reflect on the potential and limitations of tourism in contributing to a more sustainable, equitable and just world for all (i.e. Raymond & Hall, 2008).

Inspired by SDG 16, we invite scholars interested in the concerns of peace through tourism and related topics to critically reflect on the intersections between tourism, peace, conflict, justice and sustainability. In light of environmental and social challenges arising from the tensions in achieving sustainable development in the 21st century, this is an important and timely endeavour. We also note that analyses of PTT have been less evident in recent years and this SI is intended to reinvigorate interest in this topic and to highlight how important it is in our efforts to promote sustainable tourism futures.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Conceptual analyses of topics of peace through tourism
  • Building sustainable tourism futures in post-conflict situations
  • Niches contributing to peace, justice and sustainable outcomes
  • Critiques of peace through tourism and its possibilities
  • Case studies in peace through tourism
  • Conceptual and empirical work on stakeholders in building sustainable and peaceful futures in tourism
  • Governance in building the peace potential of tourism
  • In/justice in tourism

Submission guidelines

Submission guidelines

Expressions of interest are welcomed in the form of a short abstract (max 400 words), to be sent to the co-editors, Dr Freya Higgins-Desbiolles (Freya.HigginsDesbiolles@unisa.edu.au) and Dr Lynda Blanchard (lynda.blanchard@sydney.edu.au)

The guest editors welcome contributions from researchers and practitioners from around the world to contribute manuscripts for the special issue.

Contributors must follow the Journal’s Instructions for Authors found on the journal’s webpage:


An invitation from the guest editors to submit a full paper does not guarantee publication.

All full paper submissions will be subject to the normal peer review processes of the Journal of Sustainable Tourism.


Expressions of interest/abstract due: 15 November 2019

Accepted abstracts notified 15 December 2019

Invited full papers due on or before 30 August 2020

Anticipated special issue publication 15 April 2021


Early submissions are welcome and if accepted will be available online well before the full special issue is published in print. All accepted papers will enter into production and be published online in advance of print publication.