Stakeholder perception analysis of coastal cities tourism for sustainable urban development Case study of Babolsar city

Document Type : Article extracted From phd dissertation


1 Ph.D student of Geography and Urban Planning, Islamic Azad University, Noor Branch, Noor, Iran

2 Associate Professor of Natural Geography and Geomorphology, Noor Branch, Islamic Azad University, Noor, Iran

3 Associate Professor of Applied Geography Department, Mazandaran University, Babolsar, Iran

4 Associate Professor of Geography and Urban Planning, Islamic Azad University, Central Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran


Coastal tourism is one of the important motivating factors in tourism, and the development programs of most areas that have beaches are considered an important factor in achieving sustainable development. This will be realized if planners and managers at all levels and all forms of tourism do not consider one-dimensional development and pay attention to all stakeholders. A subject that has received less attention in most development programs. The present study aims to analyze the stakeholders' perception of tourism in the coastal city of Babolsar for the purpose of sustainable urban development. The research method is descriptive-analytical in terms of applied purpose and research methodology. The statistical population consists of four categories of beneficiaries including tourists, citizens, economic activists and experts (managers), and the sample size among the first three groups is 383 people using Cochran's formula and 20 people among the experts group were selected in an available manner. In order to analyze the data, spss software and Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests were used to check the normality of the data, and one-sample t-test was used to analyze the data. The results showed that in terms of the level of perception of the stakeholders regarding the effects of tourism on the sustainable development of Babolsar city, tourists with a score of 3.41, citizens with a score of 3.63, economic activists with a score of 3.1, and experts and managers with a score of 3.27 and in total with a level of They are average. And according to them, there is a significant difference between the perceptions of stakeholders regarding the effects of tourism on the sustainability of economic, social-cultural, physical-infrastructural, management-institutional and environmental indicators.
Extended Abstract 
Tourism is one of the most dynamic economic activities of the present age that plays an important role in sustainable development. Some researchers have introduced the sustainable development of tourism as a process associated with improving the quality of life of hosts, meeting the demand of visitors, and in turn, protecting natural and human resources. In the meantime, the critical point for achieving sustainable tourism development is to involve all stakeholders because sustainable tourism development is almost impossible without the support of stakeholders.
Mazandaran province, with the most coastline on the northern coast of Iran, has a rich source of coastal tourism activities. For this reason, it is popular with tourists. The present study focuses on the coastal city of Babolsar. Babolsar city is one of the tourism hubs in the north of the country due to its beautiful landscape, natural attractions, and artificial tourism. Although various stakeholders have been involved in the development of tourism in the city, so far no study has been conducted to identify the perception of stakeholders, including tourists, citizens, economic activists, and experts who seek their interests in the tourism industry. Therefore, studying in this field and considering and recognizing all the views of actors and stakeholders on the issue of tourism in this city should be considered. In order to determine the status of tourism sustainability, actors also express their views so that appropriate strategies and strategies can be presented. It is worth mentioning that in the process of studying the effects of tourism development, it is not enough to be satisfied with the views of local residents, because in the process of tourism development there are other stakeholders such as resources (environment), entrepreneurs, and tourists who are effective factors. Therefore, all stakeholders should be involved in tourism development. Considering the importance of the subject of the present study, it tries to measure the perceptions of tourism stakeholders in Babolsar city and, in this regard, also examines the differences between the perceptions of tourism stakeholders. In line with this goal, a question has been formulated as follows:
- What is the perception of tourism stakeholders about the role of coastal tourism on the environment of Babolsar city?
This research is applied and descriptive-analytical in terms of purpose and method, respectively. Also, according to the study of the coastal city of Babolsar in Mazandaran province, is a case study research. The statistical population included all stakeholders, including tourists, citizens, economic activists, tourism experts, and managers. The sample size for tourists, citizens, and entrepreneurs, according to Cochran's formula, was 383 people (divided equally among all three groups so that 128 questionnaires were distributed among each group) and among the experts and managers, which were done in an accessible way, a sample of 20 was considered. In order to analyze the data, SPSS software and the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test were used to test the normality of the data, and a sample test was used to analyze the data related to the beneficiaries.
Results and discussion
In this study, the valid Kolmogorov-Smirnov test is used to investigate the normality of the distribution of the main variables. The significance level of all variables of the Kolmogorov-Smirnov quality gap test is more than 0.05, and it is concluded that the distribution of research variables is normal. Therefore, parametric inferential statistics are used. Analysis of single-sample test data shows that the managerial-institutional index plays the lowest role with an average of 3.12 in coastal tourism from the citizens' point of view. With an average of 3.91, the environmental dimension has the most role in coastal tourism. In general, the average of all dimensions is higher than 3, which means it is above average and has a significant role in coastal tourism. Analysis of information from the perspective of economic actors shows that the economic dimension plays the lowest role, with an average of 3.09 in coastal tourism. In general, the average of all dimensions is higher than 3, except for the physical dimension of infrastructure and management-institution, which shows the weak role of these dimensions in coastal tourism. Experts' views show that the environmental dimension plays the least role in coastal tourism, with an average of 3.12.
The results show that attention to the participation of all stakeholders and various actors in the planning and development process is an integral part. This is because if any of the actors are removed from the list of tourism development decision-makers and planners, there will be the possibility of obstacles and delays in tourism development, and it will delay the achievement of sustainable tourism development. Therefore, in order to achieve sustainable development, all elements of development and all strata involved in development must have an active presence. No stakeholder can decide on behalf of another stakeholder because all of them will pursue their interests.


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