Paper Title
The Effect of Environmental Regulations on Competitiveness and Innovation in the Tourism Industry – A Theoretical Assessment

The purpose of this study is to conduct a theoretical analysis of the effect of environmental regulations on innovation and destination competitiveness. It intends to answer several questions; principal among them is, does the regulatory framework for environmental sustainability at a destination spur innovation and ultimately enhance destination competitiveness? There is often the concern that strict environmental regulations may hinder the development of any industry and may erode competitiveness as discussed by Porter and van der Linde (1995); Forsyth (1997) Russell, Lafferty and Loudoun (2008) which results in non-compliance to mandatory regulations.A critical focus of the study will be the application of Porter’s hypothesis to the framework for environmental regulation in the tourism sector.The main outcome of this research will therefore, be to examine responses of the industry to the need for environmental regulations and the possible impact of these regulations on innovation and competitiveness. This study has implications for policy since it will help to frame the discourse on environmental regulation in a manner that is constructive. Index Terms - Sustainable Tourism, Environment Sustainability, Regulations, Innovation, Competitiveness