Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Fall 2014

Department 1

Globalization Studies


Tourism is perhaps the most salient and impactful process of globalization today. As we are increasingly more mobile, traveling with endless comfort and ease, we explore the far reaches of the planet as ambassadors of our own culture and as agents of change. In this process we potentially threaten the cultural diversity of the planet. So how can we reduce the impact of tourism on the cultures of the world? In order to answer this question I examine the implications of cultural and adventure tourism, especially as they relate to the Sherpas of Nepal. Sherpas have been involved with both kinds of tourism for over 60 years, yet they have been successful in retaining much of their cultural identity and heritage. Because they have taken an active role in the tourism industry and have been the providers of the tourist experience, they have created a working relationship that fosters a cultural exchange and sharing, instead of one culture taking over the other. Through cultural and adventure touristic ventures in areas where the local community is the provider of the experience, we can better understand cultural diversity and improve cultural fluency for all people who travel the world. This is a reconsideration of tourism as a process of globalization as one for improving understanding, not for eliciting harmful change.


Globalization Studies Honors Thesis