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The Context of Sexual Exploitation of Children by Tourists and Travelers: A Cross-National Comparison of Destination Countries and Non-Destination Countries

Published onMar 04, 2022
The Context of Sexual Exploitation of Children by Tourists and Travelers: A Cross-National Comparison of Destination Countries and Non-Destination Countries
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The Context of Sexual Exploitation of Children by Tourists and Travelers: A Cross-National Comparison of Destination Countries and Non-Destination Countries
Description

Certain countries are well known for being destination countries for sexual exploitation of children in the context of travel and tourism (SECTT). Various factors are assumed to be at play to increase the vulnerability of countries, and the children that live within them, to being destinations for SECTT. The current study uses a cross-national, quantitative approach to examine these assumptions, by investigating macro-level factors relating to tourism, children's living conditions, governance, and economic development that may account for the variation in SECTT occurrence. Our findings indicate that destination countries are, on average, characterized by lower economic wealth and are located closer to the equator. Unlike assumed in previous literature, governance and tourism are not significantly related to destination countries for SECTT. The results for children's living conditions are unexpected: while bivariate analyses show that destination countries have poorer children's living conditions, a positive relation emerges in multivariate models when controlled for economic development. More specifically, we find that within the group of countries with poor economic conditions, SECTT is more likely to occur in countries with better protection of children's rights to life and education. We explore potential explanations for this finding.

 

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