Descriptive Case Studies
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Tourism, Conservation, and Contestation in Florianópolis, Brazil

Allison Bridges

October 2018, English

Lincoln Institute of Land Policy

This case study explores how the intersecting urban development agendas of multiple stakeholders can work to accelerate sustainable outcomes in land use. In Florianópolis, Brazil, the private sector and city leaders embraced tourism and a natural amenity–led growth model in the 1970s, a time when activism among environmental organizations was on the rise. Although the horizontal network of actors held vastly different development values, the alignment of goals across the parties—to preserve the city’s cultural heritage and remnants of the Atlantic Forest—led to the adoption of policies and programs that supported the protection of the island’s land and environmental assets. However, the natural amenity–led growth model resulted in negative outcomes and inequality over time, as amenity migration increased housing costs and informal settlements began to encroach on conservation
areas. The city today struggles to define a shared vision of itself that can meet divergent development agendas.

Recommended citation: Bridges, Allison. 2018. “Tourism, Conservation, and Contestation in Florianópolis, Brazil.” Case study. Cambridge, MA: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.


Conservation, Environmental Management, Housing, Natural Resources, Sustainable Development