Understanding visitors' spatial behavior: a review of spatial applications in parks and protected areas

Authors: Brian Peterson*, Clemson University, Matthew Brownlee, Clemson University
Topics: Recreational and Sport Geography, Natural Resources
Keywords: Parks and protected areas, spatiotemporal data, human behavior
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Palladian, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


As recreationists travel throughout parks and protected areas they are constantly consuming two resources: space and time. Time is an essential aspect of spatial data, because time-budgets affect spatial movements (Hӓgerstrand 1970, 1973, 1982). Hӓgerstrand’s time-geography paves a foundational ontological construction of the relationship between space and time. Thus, it is necessary to understand both space and time to gain further knowledge about behavior of recreationists. Spatiotemporal data are important for managers of public spaces to understand: how much time visitors spend in specific locations, the distribution of visitors, the identification, evaluation and evolution of possible resource impacts, how visitors allocate their time, and where and when mitigation of problems may be prevented (D’Antonio & Monz, 2016). Consequently this information can help managers effectively manage for social, environmental, cultural, and managerial impacts (Riungu, Peterson, Beeco, & Brown, 2018). Hence, spatiotemporal research contributes pertinent information for managing PPAs effectively. Even though spatiotemporal research is conducted regularly for parks and protected areas, rarely are research articles stating the theoretical underpinnings guiding the research. Thus, the purpose of this oral presentation is to deliver a review of spatiotemporal theories, models, and framework applicable to parks and protected areas research. The review will include literature from human geography, geography, and tourism.

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