How Bangladesh Women in Tourism are Empowering the Society?

A Study on Interdisciplinary Insights


A little more than half of Bangladesh population are women. However, their participation in decision-making is very limited. Hence, the application of women’s participation in social empowerment does not appear to be significant. Tourism is no exception. This study is important as it provides potentials in community-based rural tourism. According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization, around 54% of women are directly or indirectly involved in world tourism now. But in Bangladesh, this number is difficult to determine. However, experts believe that it is not possible to develop rural tourism in this country without the huge participation of women. That’s why, we have selected 3 popular rural tourism destinations for conducting this research. The picture of women’s participation in popular tourist destinations and how much it can contribute to the empowerment of society will be revealed.

Study site and Sample

  1. Impact Zone of the Sundarbans: Sundarbans is a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site. About 2.7 million people live in the impact zone of this world’s largest mangrove forest and depend on agriculture, fishing, and forestry for their survival. Banishanta is a union (the lowest administrative unit of the local government) of Dakop Upazila (sub-district) of Khulna district here. About 7,000 women live in this union. Out of them, 200 women will be selected to conduct the research through the random selection process.
  2. Dhanishafa, one Riverine, and Religious Destination: This place is in Mathbaria upazila of Pirojpur district and has many attractions of rural tourism including river, forest, and nature. The ancient wooden Momin Mosque is an important structure of this union. Daily many people come to see its architecture and art form. About 14,000 women live in this union. Out of them, 200 women will be selected to conduct the research.
  3. Tanguar Haor (Sealike Water Basin): This is an important large natural water body of Tahirpur Upazila under Sunamganj District. Although this Haor is spread across Tahirpur and Dharmapasha upazilas. Balijuri Union of Tahirpur Upazila has been selected as the 3rd place of conducting research. Because the entire union is covered by water for 7-9 months, where a lot of tourists come every day. There are about 5,000 women in this union. Out of them, 200 women will be selected for the research.

Research Questions

  1. In what processes are women involved with tourism in these 3 locations?
  2. What quality of tourism is enhanced by women’s involvement in tourism?
  3. To what extent women are involved in the decision-making process in various activities of creation and operation of tourism?

Probable Outcomes of the Study

  1. Data on the quantity and quality of women’s activities involved in tourism will come out.
  2. Areas of application of women’s innovative potential in tourism will be identified.
  3. Women’s decision-making in tourism as an element of community empowerment will be determined, from which new avenues of rural community building can be found.
  4. Areas of direct participation of women in the creation and management of tourism in rural communities will cleared.
  5. Above all, areas of empowerment of women can be specified through tourism to increase the strength of the society.
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