Cruising with a Conscience: Navigating Moral Identity and the Ethics of Sustainability in the Online Cruise Community

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


This PhD project explores how cruise tourists reflect on and negotiate the sustainability of their holiday by engaging with fellow cruise tourists online.The extensive growth of the cruise industry in terms of passenger numbers, new ship builds, and destinations has prompted concern about the industry’s environmental and societal impacts. Nevertheless, little is known about how cruise tourists position themselves in relation to these impacts. As tourists increasingly engage in conversations about their holiday experiences on the Internet, discourses within online communities may offer valuable insights into how cruise tourists negotiate the complexities of being a responsible tourist. In order to address these questions, preliminary findings based on a thematic analysis of threads relating to the social and environmental dimensions of sustainability in the world’s largest online cruise community suggest thatsome cruise tourists consider the economic well-being of cruise ship employees but do not share much concern about the ecological footprint of their holiday. Furthermore, cruisers exhibit varied strategies to reconcile their moral identities with their decision to take a cruise.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jan 2020
EventENTER20 @Surrey Ph.D. Workshop: The 27th Annual International eTourism Conference - University of Surrey, Guildford, United Kingdom
Duration: 7 Jan 202010 Jan 2020


WorkshopENTER20 @Surrey Ph.D. Workshop
Abbreviated titleENTER2020
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • cruise tourism
  • sustainability discourse
  • moral identity
  • social media
  • online communities


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