Climate Change Adaptation in the Coastal Tourism Hotel Sector: The case of Sihanoukville, Cambodia

Cambodia is a country, which has seen very rapid tourism development over the last decade, while also being identified as very vulnerable to the impacts of climate change (CC) by several key international agencies. This paper takes the form of a climate change-focused case study of the coastal tourism hotel sector in Cambodia’s Sihanoukville. It is based on semi-structured interviews with hotel managers and field observations. The paper’s aims are sequential and start by initially examining to what extent Sihanoukville’s hotel sector is vulnerable to CC, which is followed by an analysis of the hotel sector’s adaptation. Finally the type and nature of adaption is critically compared and contrasted by star rating and location relative to the seashore. Some interesting findings emerge that highlight paradoxes in the context of the vulnerability- adaptation dynamic. Future research should investigate the barriers and critical success factors (SF) for CC adaptation (CCA), as these factors will provide valuable insights into the vulnerability-adaptation dynamic in Sihanoukville, thereby contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 13 Climate Action.