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Tourism carbon Kuznets-curve hypothesis: a systematic literature review and a paradigm shift to a corporation-performance perspective

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  • Emmanouil F. Papavasileiou
  • Panagiotis Tzouvanas
Since the introduction of the carbon Kuznets-curve hypothesis in the mid-1990s, the inverted U–shaped relationship between economic development and carbon emissions has remained a subject of debate in the social sciences. We engage tourism research in this debate, in a fourfold manner. First, we offer a systematic literature review concerning the role of tourism in the carbon Kuznets-curve hypothesis using a protocol-based reporting process. Second, we present the level of consensus with the carbon Kuznets-curve hypothesis and the conceptual gaps in the identified literature (n = 22). Third, we introduce an emerging concept, offering a novel tourism corporate/performance orientation to the carbon Kuznets-curve hypothesis. Fourth, we provide evidence of empirical validity using different econometric techniques from an international tourism corporation (n = 86) data set (2005–2018). The inverted U–shaped relationship between measures of economic and carbon performance among tourism corporations is a robust result under many different specifications.
Original languageEnglish
Article number0
Pages (from-to)0
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Travel Research
Early online date3 May 2020
Publication statusEarly online - 3 May 2020


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