Tourism Review International 18(4) Abstracts

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Tourism Review International, Vol. 18, pp. 237-252
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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/154427215X14230549904017
E-ISSN 1943-4421
Copyright © 2015 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Slum Tourism: State of the Art

Fabian Frenzel,*† Ko Koens,†‡ Malte Steinbrink,†§ and Christian M. Rogerson†

*School of Management, University of Leicester, UK
†School of Tourism & Hospitality, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
‡Academy of Hotel and Facility Management, NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands
§Institute for Migration Research and Intercultural Studies, University of Osnabrück, Germany

This article provides a view on the state-of-the-art literature on slum tourism. It points to the rapid growth of slum tourism research in recent years and highlights the main avenues that research has thus far explored in areas such as slum tourism history, slum tourist subjectivity, resident perspectives, slum tourism operations, economics, and mobilities. With the advent of slum tourism the relationship of poverty and tourism has changed. Tourism is no longer only a means to fight poverty, but poverty is an attraction of tourism. This has consequences for the relationship of slum tourism to other forms of tourism where poverty functions as an attraction, like volunteer or developmental tourism. The article identifies research gaps as well as avenues for further research.

Key words: Slum tourism; State of the art; Poverty alleviation; Mobilities; Development

Address correspondence to Fabian Frenzel, School of Management, University of Leicester, Ken Edwards Building, Room 329, University Road, Leicester, UK LE1 7RH. E-mail:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Tourism Review International, Vol. 18, pp. 253-268
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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/154427215X14230549904053
E-ISSN 1943-4421
Copyright © 2015 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Smart Tourism Investment: Planning Pathways to Break the Poverty Cycle

Moustafa A. Mekawy

Department of Tourism Studies, Faculty of Tourism and Hotels, University of Sadat City, El-Sadat City, Egypt

The aim of this article is to highlight how the smart tourism investment (STI) threshold can be used to break the poverty cycle in Egypt. Tourism investment is a major source of economic growth, especially in poor communities. How it can simultaneously be a force to break the poverty cycle is the theme of this study. The global emergence of destination slums poses questions for tourism-led poverty reduction (TLPR) studies and development planning initiatives. Employing exploratory and interpretative modes of enquiry and analyzing the al-Darb el Ahmar destination slum illuminates how slums’ sources of production deterioration, traditional investing methods, and adverse planning approaches may prevent inhabitants from snatching economic opportunities offered by geographic proximity to tourism development zones, to eventually break the cycle of generational poverty. This study offers a valuable approach to STI-led growth and elucidates planning pathways through which poverty traps can be broken. Findings reveal that STI’s role in poverty eradication, in close cooperation with other Egyptian social sectors, is crucial and depends on the ability of stakeholders to maintain the productivity of slum resources and capital. The article concludes that the planned STIs for poverty closure programs should have an effective, positive impact if appropriately intervened in, channeled, and monitored.

Key words: Smart tourism investment (STI); Destination slum concept; Interpretivism; Poverty cycle; Penetration; Planning pathways

Address correspondence to Dr. Moustafa Ahmed Mekawy, Faculty of Tourism and Hotels, Sadat City University, El Sadat City, 32897, Egypt. Tel: +20482603209; Fax: +20482603210; E-mail:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Tourism Review International, Vol. 18, pp. 269-282
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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/154427215X14230549904099
E-ISSN 1943-4421
Copyright © 2015 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Reimagining the Geography of the Favelas: Pacification, Tourism, and Transformation in Complexo do Alemão, Rio De Janeiro

Emily LeBaron

Department of Geography, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, Canada

This article examines the recent intersection of two forces, at times complementary and at times competing: pacification and favela tourism in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Rio’s favelas have long been considered archetypal neighborhoods of poverty and crime. The city’s new “pacification” project involves military and police occupation of targeted communities, to control drug cartel-related violence. Complexo do Alemão is a large cluster of 15 favelas in Rio’s North Zone with a particularly violent history, officially “pacified” since 2010. Together, tourism and pacification are transforming Alemão at a rapid pace, both materially and discursively. This article involves a comprehensive look at the budding favela tourism industry in Complexo do Alemão, and incorporates results from 2013 field research there, including interviews with residents and guides. Favela tourism in Alemão has seen mixed success, and many companies are struggling; still, it brings unique benefits to the local population, such as protection, accountability, and a means of reclaiming occupied space. In addition, favela tourism is an integral tool to tackling the stigmatization of favela residents as talentless criminals, part of a larger trend that is reshaping the meaning of “favela” in the geographical imagination.

Key words: Favela tourism; Poverty tourism; Imaginative geographies; Pacification

Address correspondence to Emily LeBaron, Department of Geography, Simon Fraser University, 8888 University Drive, Burnaby, BC, V5A 1S6, Canada. Tel: 778-772-2662; E-mail:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Tourism Review International, Vol. 18, pp. 283-294
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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/154427215X14230549904134
E-ISSN 1943-4421
Copyright © 2015 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

Touring the Demolished Slum? Slum Tourism in the Face of Delhi’s Gentrification

Tore Holst

Intercultural Studies, Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark

What are the limits of the knowledge it is ethically viable to articulate about “slums,” in a political environment where slum demolitions are a weekly occurrence? By cross-reading Partha Chatterjee’s theoretical discussion of the conditions of subaltern (self)representation with studies of global slum tourism, the article attempts to answer this question by analyzing the case of the NGO, Salaam Baalak Trust. This NGO conducted slum tours for tourists from the global North in the interstitial spaces around New Delhi Railway Station until 2010, when the slum they used as an example of their work was suddenly demolished. To the NGO staff, this posed two mutually exclusive ethical demands: a) to represent slums so that the plight of their (sometimes displaced) inhabitants might be publicized and discussed and b) to hide slums from view so the state would have no incentive to remove them as a part of their struggle to gentrify the city. The article argues that the implications of this case speaks into the theoretical framework of slum tourism studies, as it illustrates how knowledge produced within this field comes to act in the world in sometimes unforeseen ways.

Key words: Slums; Poverty; India; Subaltern studies; Salaam Baalak Trust

Address correspondence to Tore Holst, Ph.D. student, Intercultural Studies, Roskilde University, 4000 Roskilde, Denmark. Tel: +45 46742791; E-mail:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Tourism Review International, Vol. 18, pp. 295-309
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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/154427215X14230549904170
E-ISSN 1943-4421
Copyright © 2015 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
Printed in the USA. All rights reserved.

“So, Child Protection, I’ll Make a Quick Point of it Now”: Broadening the Notion of Child Abuse in Volunteering Vacations in Siem Reap, Cambodia

P. Jane Reas

Edge Hill University, Ormskirk, Lancashire, UK

This article is based on a qualitative study of volunteer tourists who spend vacation time with “poor” children in the fashionable volunteer tourist destination of Siem Reap in Cambodia. Although this tourist option is considered a mass niche commodity in the global tourism marketplace, only narrow understandings of child abuse and child protection are generally used when considering this largely well-regarded trend. The World Health Organization definition of child abuse talks about exploitation that may result in actual or potential harm, factors normally not linked to the efforts of well-intentioned vacationers. Bourdieu’s notion of “symbolic violence” and Harvey’s of “civilized oppression” are, however, concepts that consider the gentle and invisible possibilities of abuse, whereas Giroux argues that abuse to children occurs in even seemingly benign cultural spheres. By using these analytical ideas to move away from thinking that sees only pedophiles and perverts as exemplars of abuse (while in no way making light of these transgressors), attention can be focused onto questions of exploitation and notions of harm to dignity, as well as to considering how these issues may be concealed within this increasingly popular vacation trend.

Key words: Volunteer tourism; Cambodia; Child abuse; Exploitation

Address correspondence to P. Jane Reas, Ph.D., 9 Victoria Street, Settle, North Yorkshire BD24 9HD, UK. E-mail:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it