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Winter Tourism, Climate Change, and Snowmaking in the Swiss Alps: Tourists' Attitudes and Regional Economic Impacts

Year of publication2011
Author(s)Marco Pütz
Co-authorsDavid Gallati, Susanne Kytzia, Hans Elsasser, Corina Lardelli, Michaela Teich,
Fabian Waltert, and Christian Rixen
JournalMountain Research and Development
Publication typeOther
Technical snowmaking has become an important measure in winter tourism destinations to deal with decreasing snow reliability, seasonal weather variability, and growing customer demand. This study analyzes tourists' attitudes toward technical snowmaking, their preferences for snow reliability, and other factors that influence destination choice. We interviewed tourists at 3 Swiss winter tourism destinations: Davos, Scuol, and Braunwald. In addition, we analyzed the impact of technical snowmaking on the regional economy in Davos with a scenario analysis based on a simplified model of the regional economy related to tourist behavior. The 3 destinations showed large regional and seasonal differences in tourists' attitudes toward technical snowmaking and the importance of factors that influence destination choice.