Innovation-Driven Growth of Tourist Destinations in the Russian Arctic: Challenges to Sustainable Development

Innovation-Driven Growth of Tourist Destinations in the Russian Arctic: Challenges to Sustainable Development

Anna Ivolga (Stavropol State Agrarian University, Russia), Alexander Trukhachev (Ministry of Tourism and Recreation of Stavropol Region, Russia) and Yulia Elfimova (Stavropol State Agrarian University, Russia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-6954-1.ch012


The attractiveness of the Arctic as a tourist destination has been growing. The growth is determined by a number of competitive advantages of the region in the eyes of foreign tourists. Along with higher income to those countries involved, mass tourism brings serious challenges in remote Arctic areas: increasing pollution through tourist traffic, risk of environmental damage because of accidents with cruise ships. One of the possible solutions to the coexistence between the exploration of Arctic tourist destinations and sustainable development is an innovation-driven growth. In the sensitive Arctic areas, traditional approaches to the development of tourism business are not applicable. Innovation approach represents a new concept of how tourism can at the same time bring economic benefits to remote and peripheral Arctic areas and ensure sustainable development of a fragile environment. The goal of this chapter is to define the categories of innovations applicable in Arctic tourism, including process, marketing, institutional, management, product, and service innovations.
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The sphere of tourism has becoming an integral sector of the economy, having a multiplicative effect on the development of infrastructure, social services, and employment. In the Arctic, tourism has been expanding rapidly alongside growing international interest in the research in the fields of development of tourism infrastructure, marketing, the involvement of indigenous peoples, environment, and sustainability.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Russian Arctic: An area within Russia’s border which includes Arkhangelskaya, Murmanskaya, and Magadanskaya oblasts; republics of Karelia, Komi, and Yakutia; Nenetsky, Yamalo-Nenetsky, Khanty-Mansiysky, and Chukotsky autonomous districts; and Krasnoyarsky Krai.

Innovation: An idea which is replicable at an economical cost, satisfies a specific need, involves the deliberate application of information, imagination, and initiative in deriving greater or different values from resources, and includes all processes by which inventions are generated and converted into useful products.

Tourist Attraction: A place of interest where tourists visit, typically for its inherent or exhibited natural or cultural value, historical significance, natural or built beauty, offering leisure, adventure, and amusement.

Arctic Tourism: A travel to the circumpolar territories of the planet for recreational, leisure, or research purposes; an activity essential to the Nordic countries because of its direct effects on the environmental, social, cultural, and economic sectors of indigenous societies of the Arctic.

Indigenous Peoples: The inhabitants of the circumpolar Arctic who have a specific connection to the land that they have inhabited, distinct language, culture, and traditional livelihoods such as reindeer herding, fishing, and hunting.

Sustainability: A continued development or growth, without significant deterioration of the environment and depletion of natural resources on which human wellbeing depend.

Tourist Product: A composite product consisting of several tangible and intangible components that enables a tourist to be engaged in a specific activity at one or at several consecutive tourist destinations as well as facilitates a transportation to that destination, accommodation, and entertainment program during the trip.

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