COVID-19 is expanding global consciousness and the sustainability of travel and tourism

Adriana Galvani, Alan A. Lew, Maria Sotelo Perez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

182 Scopus citations


The sustainable development model has largely failed to address the social and environmental challenges of the 21st century. True sustainability will only occur when it is valued as a part of the taken-for-granted daily life of individuals and cultures across the globe. This has not yet happened because humanity has not evolved a global consciousness quickly enough to match the global advances in telecommunications and transportation technologies that have created a socially and economically ever-shrinking planet. Travel and tourism contributes to the expansion of global consciousness, although only in a haphazard and unintentional manner. The COVID-19 pandemic is a result of planetary time-space compression and is forcing an expansion in human consciousness that will make humankind better able to address global problems. There will still be considerable diversity on the planet, as now, but the pandemic will stimulate growing numbers of people, businesses and governments to adopt new ways of thinking, behaving and operating that are more closely aligned with the goals of sustainable development. This could be further enhanced if travel and tourism were to adopt the expansion and awakening of global conscious as a fundamental and transformational value in the products and experiences that it offers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)567-576
Number of pages10
JournalTourism Geographies
StatePublished - 2020


  • COVID-19
  • consciousness
  • future trends
  • globalization
  • sustainability
  • time-space compression
  • travel and tourism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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