Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

In the absence of sufficient regulation of wildlife tourism attractions (WTAs), standards of treatment of animals are typically determined by what tourists find acceptable. Under this model there is little motivation for operators to improve standards if tourists do not leave reputationally damaging feedback. Given this current state, the objectives of this paper are twofold. First, we highlight and categorise existing systemic barriers that prevent the operation of an ethical market for WTAs. Second, we combine knowledge of these barriers with a recently published theoretical framework on animal justice to derive an initial, robust set of practical criteria with which non-expert tourists can externally assess ethical standards at WTAs. Viewed at this stage as a prototype, these criteria allow tourists to better understand the scope and consequences of the proper and improper use of animals in tourism along governance, conservation and animal welfare lines.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Ecotourism

Publication Date