Value of bathing waters and influence of bathing water quality: literature review

Research aimed to provide socio-economic understanding of the value of Scottish bathing waters and the influence of bathing water quality (BWQ) to bathers, beach users and to the national and local economies.


1. Note that the first objective refers to carrying out the desk study and has therefore not been translated into a research question.

2. The search string was adjusted depending on the capabilities and functions of each database's search tool.

3. The research questions were used to guide the review of the 97 documents. The focus was on relevance to those questions which often was not clear from just the title, hence closer review of the abstract or paper.

4. The results have been combined across databases and duplicates have been removed.


6. Tagging function available on Mendeley.

7. In some cases, sub-questions, that cross-cut research questions, have been clustered under an overarching heading.

8. SEWeb benefits from the environment pages:

9. Reaching 'good' ecological status under the Water Framework Directive.

10. van den Berg, Koole, & van der Wulp (2003) and Karmanov & Hamel (2008): in Hipp and Ogunseitan (2011).

11. Velarde, Fry, & Tveit (2007): in Hipp and Ogunseitan (2011).

12. Ogunseitan (2005), de Vries, Verheij, Groenewegen, & Spreeuwenberg (2003): in Hipp and Ogunseitan (2011).

13. Chang, Hammitt, Chen, Machnik, & Su (2008): in Hipp and Ogunseitan (2011).

14. SEWeb recreation pages:

15. The welfare value captures the positive effect on people's welfare emerging as a result of the recreational activities they engaged in. It can include a range of effects these activities might have had, such as, strengthening social and family structures or making people feel positive emotions.

16. Depending on the study a different terminology or measure might be used so instead of benefits some studies refer to welfare or consumer surplus.

17. A change in welfare per trip is used in this study to measure the impact of an improvement in water quality on the positive effects a visit at the beach has on people (Also see earlier footnote on welfare value). It is a common measure when trying to assess the benefits of visits to natural sites (Harris and Roach, 2013).

18. These costs were estimated from the average decrease in the number of visits indicated by 247 visitors across beaches in South Africa and correspond to a reduction in visits by 6% under the loss of a Blue Flag scenario and a reduction by 39% under the quality deterioration scenario.

19. Absolute reduction in risk.

20. Statistically significant result.

21. These results need to be caveated on the basis of the date this study was undertaken and the specificity of the location.

22. 55% of respondents referred to the towns and villages along the path as one of the main attractions and 47% mentioned the coastal path (Fife Coast and Countryside Trust, 2007).

23. Note also that the model has also been applied in Wales. See for example Geoff Broom Associates, 2000.

24. Collecting data about visitor spend is the main input required for local economic impact analysis and is consistent with data collected in other visitor surveys. This is confirmed by LUC (2015) which reviews questions included in various visitor surveys.



27. In Oliver et al. (2016)


29. Sources have been categorised as 'peer reviewed' only where there is clear evidence that this is the case ( i.e. publications in peer-reviewed journals). We acknowledge that grey literature sources may have gone through a substantial peer review process, however, it was not possible to evidence this as part of the literature review undertaken.


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