|dc.description.abstract||Although the treatment of disaster risk management (DRM) and climate change adaptation (CCA) as distinct and disparate processes is increasingly being questioned, the behavioural links and limits of DRM and CCA have received limited research attention. This thesis offers a demand and supply-side analysis of this research problem in one of the world’s most disaster prone, climate sensitive and tourism dependent regions - the Caribbean.
The research focuses on two major knowledge gaps. The first research issue (RI) addresses the lack of studies that examine the similarities and differences of the DRM and CCA decision-making process of tourism suppliers (coastal hoteliers and policy-makers). This research conducts this type of assessment in relation to a sample of three DRM measures, as well as, four CCA strategies, namely, the Protection, Accommodation, Retreat and Diversification (PARD) strategies. The second research issue (RI 2) investigates how DRM and CCA perception gaps between demand and supply-side stakeholders may inhibit coherent action on managing disaster risk to advance CCA.
To investigate these issues, the research used a sequential application of Kates’ (1971) Adjustment Process Control (APC) model, the Destination Choice Set approach originally advanced in tourism by Woodside and his colleagues (1977), and Ajzen’s (1985) Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB). The research programme adopted a multi-stage, mixed methods strategy made up of a series of four independent yet inter-related primary studies that are qualitative or quantitative in nature. Evidence drawn from over 500 respondents in ten Caribbean destinations supports the findings, conclusions and research implications.
Regarding RI 1, the research finds that there are three behavioural links and five behavioural limits of supplier DRM and CCA decision-making. Regarding RI 2, the research finds that a DRM perception gap still exists between demand and supply-side stakeholders since Drabek’s first findings of a perception gap over 20 years ago. Interestingly, the dynamic driving this gap is much different, with tourists having lower perceptions of the importance of DRM considerations than their hosts. Importantly, the research also finds that there is a CCA perception gap between suppliers and tourists. Regarding RI 1, the research concludes that present-day DRM processes are likely to limit future CCA prospects to incremental versus transformational forms of adaptation. Regarding RI 2, it concludes that social pressure to adopt particular DRM and CCA measures will play a central role in suppliers’ present and future protective decision-making. In this context, miscalculations across groups are likely.
This research makes important contributions to theory and methodology, in addition to having implications for policy and practice. The first theoretical contribution of this work is related to the conceptualisation and use of the Adjustment Choice Set (ACS) approach, a new analytical approach to measure and describe the scope, prevalence and categorisation of DRM and CCA measures. The second theoretical contribution revolves around the development and testing of a new Generalised Model of Tourism Supplier Protective Decision-making. The new model describes the influence of climatic and non-climatic factors at various stages of DRM and CCA decision-making, and has the potential for explanatory power, especially in the evaluation of intention to engage in protective behaviour.
The research methodology demonstrated that the use of inter-linking, multi-disciplinary models is an effective approach to understanding the complex nature of DRM and CCA decision-making. This approach overcomes the inherent limits encountered in trying to use individual models in isolation and exploits the potential that the use of multiple decision theories together offered to explain a wider range of behaviour across an expanded range of contexts.
Several policy and practice implications for DRM and CCA interventions arise from the research results. For example, the demand and supply-side perception gap analysis is insightful in identifying DRM and CCA measures that may be of benefit to destinations in the short and long-term and are perceived well by tourists. In this way, the results of this research enable hoteliers and policy-makers to move away from ‘blanket adjustment strategies’ to more specific measures that are ‘win-win-win’ across hoteliers, policy-makers and tourists. In addition, knowledge of the determinants to engage in protective behaviour is particularly useful for policy-makers to provide favourable conditions in support of supplier adoption of DRM and CCA measures. These contributions advance not only our understanding of supply-side protective behaviour but also enhance efforts to forecast and align the supply and consumption of DRM and CCA measures.
Future research should prioritise the further testing of the ACS approach, as well as, the new Generalised Model of Tourism Supplier Protective Decision-making across different contexts.||en