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Revista de Ciencias Ambientales

versión On-line ISSN 2215-3896versión impresa ISSN 1409-2158


GOMEZ-BARRANCO, Leny Beatríz; VARGAS MARTINEZ, Elva Esther; ZIZUMBO VILLARREAL, Lilia  y  SANCHEZ VALDES, Arlén. Methodological considerations for the study of tourism from a socio-ecological metabolism perspective. Ciencias Ambientales [online]. 2022, vol.56, n.2, pp.102-119. ISSN 2215-3896.


The material construction of the modern world at the global level, based on models of extractive specialization, has generated the material decapitalization of nature, especially affecting Latin America, as it is one of the largest exporters of matter. The concept of metabolism in the social sciences is a theoretical-methodological proposal that quantifies the inputs and outputs of matter and energy in social-ecological systems. With this information, it is possible to determine whether an economic activity, such as tourism, is resilient or is exceeding the regenerative capacity of resources.


To investigate the methods that can be used in the socio-metabolic research of tourism.


Through a process of exploration in the literature, a body of knowledge was identified that revealed pre-existing methodologies as a possibility for evaluating and, if necessary, modifying production and consumption patterns in various tourist areas.


A balance is presented in relation to these methods, the elements that compose them, as well as the possibility of adoption by the tourist activity; thus determining a contribution to the study of the relationship between tourism and the environment.


Finally, it is concluded that these methods can support a better understanding of the interdependencies between social welfare and the physical services provided by the metabolism of the tourist activity with a view to sustainability.

Palabras clave : Socio-metabolic research; socio-ecological metabolism; methodologies; tourism..

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