Evaluating residents’ perceptions of nature-based tourism with a factor-cluster approach

Xiaoping Gu, Carter A. Hunt, Michael L. Lengieza, Lijun Niu, Huiwen Wu, Yue Wang, Xiang Jia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


The purpose of the research presented here was to empirically assess resident perceptions of tourism development around the Changbai Mountain Biosphere Reserve (CMBR), a protected area straddling the China and North Korea border. Several theoretical approaches to the assessment of local resident attitudes towards tourism were reviewed and integrated into a novel factor-cluster assessment of residents in Erdaobaihe, the community most adjacent to CMBR. This analysis quanti-tatively grouped residents based on their perceptions of tourism’s economic, social, cultural, and environmental consequences for the town. An exploratory factor analysis of resident perceptual items first revealed six perception domains, and a subsequent cluster analysis then identified four distinct groups of residents based on these perceptions. A descriptive profile of each cluster and the significant differences among clusters are provided. Advancing our theoretical understanding of resident perspectives of tourism development, this cluster-based segmentation approach, demon-strated here, holds much promise for elaborating on the many ways that residents respond to new and long-standing forms of tourism in their communities. These theoretical and methodological contributions will be applicable to scholars as well as tourism practitioners and policy makers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number199
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


Dive into the research topics of 'Evaluating residents’ perceptions of nature-based tourism with a factor-cluster approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this