Thesis Format Review

Open Access
Pandit, Rucha
Area of Honors:
Bachelor of Arts
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Michael David Gechter, Thesis Supervisor
  • Russell Paul Chuderewicz, Honors Advisor
  • Economics
This paper seeks to observe to what extent income, contributed by the tourism industry, affects the socioeconomic status of marginalized Andean natives as a result of employment in the tourist commodity of Machu Picchu. Porters on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu typically represent marginalized populations and so, observations of their lifestyles specifically, will to some extent be used to further arguments in this paper. Additionally, there will be a focus on exploring the presence of any other factors with the potential to affect lifestyle, such as inherent job risks and medical compensation, that are not represented by increases in wages. The topic explored in this paper has important humanitarian and legislative implications because it will further build on previous literature and reflect the true living conditions of indigenous populations amidst the smokescreen of rising wages as a result of increased tourism. If there are significant factors that negatively affect workers’ living standards despite wage increases, they should be brought to light so that there may be national and local efforts to address these development concerns. Simply assuming that a positive correlation between income and socioeconomic status may perpetuate an ignorance of persistent issues that may help to better lives if appropriately addressed.