Stakeholder collaboration in a prospective World Heritage Area: The case of Kokoda and the Owen Stanley Ranges

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Amy Louise Bott
Simone Maria Grabowski
Stephen Wearing


The process of listing a World Heritage Area (WHA)c in developing countries is often much more complex than in the West. Often all stakeholders are not taken into consideration and there is a lack of understanding of the concept of World Heritage and what it entails. This is particularly true for stakeholders who live in or adjacent to the proposed WHA, such as local communities. This paper presents a case study of Kokoda and the Owen Stanley Ranges, currently a tentative World Heritage site, to show the complexities in stakeholder collaboration and attribution in the process of World Heritage designation. Six key stakeholders were identified in the study. Upon examination of four attributes of stakeholders: power; legitimacy; urgency; and proximity, it was found that all stakeholders in this case study have a high legitimacy in the listing process however only the local community holds high levels of power, urgency and proximity. Additionally it was found that several stakeholders, like the private sector, have too many weak relationships with other stakeholders, resulting in a lack of communication. These findings present the first step in understanding how it might be possible to improve the listing process of World Heritage Sites in developing countries through effective stakeholder collaboration.

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Articles (refereed)
Author Biographies

Amy Louise Bott, University of Technology Sydney

Amy Louise Bott is currently a PhD Candidate at the University of Technology, Sydney. Amy graduated from Macquarie University with a Bachelor of Business, International Tourism and graduated from the University of Technology, Sydney with a First Class Honours degree in Tourism Management. Her area of research is tourism, community development and protected area management and her PhD is focused on the changing role of local communities in the management of tourism development.

Simone Maria Grabowski, University of Technology Sydney

Simone is a PhD candidate at the University of Technolgy, Sydney where she also teaches and works as a research assistant. Her areas of teaching and research are in sustainable tourism, volunteer tourism, community development, tourist behaviour and cross-cultural psychology.

Stephen Wearing, University of Technology Sydney

Associate Professor, School of Leisure Sport and Tourism, University of Technology, Sydney