Nor Haniza Mohamad

Dr., Politeknik Ibrahim Sultan, MALAYSIA,




Community-based Tourism (CBT) is a form of tourism that promotes community empowerment through managing a tourism project that can improve the well-being of the community. This includes economic, social and environmental sustainable development. CBT projects encourage local communities to be actively involved in the project by owning, operating, coordinating and managing the project at community level. In doing so, the community will have the upper hand in determining and controlling the income generated from the project. However, encouraging local community to participate in CBT project can be challenging, which gradually but significantly contribute to the health of the project. This paper aims to describe and share insights on Kurt Lewin’s 3-stage-change model used by a successful CBT project to encourage their local community to participate in the project by changing their mind set and behaviours, and ensuring these mind set and behaviours become their second nature. The methodology of this paper is based on a case study, which is part of a larger scale longitudinal study conducted between 2010 until 2017 which involved the authors. The CBT project is known as Miso Walai Homestay, in the state of Sabah, Malaysia. The respondents were CBT volunteers called MESCOT (Model of Economically Sustainable Community Tourism). Data was collected through in-depth interviews and direct observation at the sites, as well as documents pertinent to the project. 54 MESCOT members were interviewed and observed at the site. Initially, only a small number of community members supported the project. However, MESCOT leaders had unknowingly used an approach similar to Lewin’s 3-stage-change model: unfreezing, changing and refreezing. During the unfreezing stage, MESCOT leaders used bottom-up approach to create an awareness of why the community had to change the current state of economy and livelihood. During the change stage, these leaders encouraged the community to implement the changes through experiential learning process. Finally, during the refreezing stage, the leaders reinforced, stabilized and solidified the new state after the change through a CBT Master Plan developed by the CBT community themselves. Community participation is quintessential in ensuring a project can be sustained. The experience from CBT Batu Puteh suggests that a wide-based community participation can be achieved when the community members are ready in terms of the mind set and behaviours to contribute to a CBT project. In this case, Lewin’s 3-stage-change model was proven to be useful in facilitating the change process. Therefore, CBT leaders at community level, planners at state level and funders should understand this process as a mechanism that can sustain a particular community project. Although this paper focuses on Miso Walai Homestay, Lewin’s 3-stage-change model possesses generic process which can be adapted and adopted by other communities.

Keywords: Community-based Tourism, MESCOT, Miso Walai Homestay, Lewin’s 3-stage-change model


CITATION: Abstracts & Proceedings of ADVED 2017 - 3rd International Conference on Advances in Education and Social Sciences, 9-11 October 2017- Istanbul, Turkey

ISBN: 978-605-82433-0-9