Knowledge atlas Science

Hrvoje Carić, Ph.D., Environmental science

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Hrvoje Carić is a senior research associate at the Institute for Tourism in Zagreb. His work focuses on environmental science which includes the assessment of marine pollution, ecological and environmental economics, risk assessment, pollution valuation methodologies, and nautical tourism. In practice, he works as an analyst, lecturer, author, and researcher.

Name of Field in the local language
Znanost o okolišu
Area of Expertise
Ecological tourism and sustainability, Ecological and environmental economics, Nautical tourism
Scientists / Scientific team
Hrvoje Carić, Ph.D.
Location, Institution, Website
Zagreb, Institute for Tourism Link to website
Type of Institution
Scientific public institute
Years of Active working in the Field
Collaborators or Successors

Laboratory and research space
Measuring and analytical instruments (spectrograph), radar images, drone imagery
Technology / Tools / Machines
Collecting data (monitoring phenomena like anthropogenic influences), assessment of biodiversity, risk assessment, pollution valuation modelling/methodologies
Research Methods / Processes
Collecting data (monitoring phenomena like anthropogenic influences), assessment of biodiversity, risk assessment, pollution valuation modelling/methodologies
Members / Employees
30 employees – 20 Doctors of science
Education of the Scientist
2008 – 2011 Doctoral degree, ‘Evaluation Model of Marine Pollution’ – Inter-university doctoral program Applied Marine Sciences at the University of Split and Dubrovnik; 1996 Master’s degree, International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics, Lund University, Sweden, Master of Science in Environmental Management and Policy. Dissertation ‘Introduction of Cleaner Production in Croatia’; 1991 – 1996 Bachelor’s degree, Concordia College, Moorhead, MN, USA. Studies (double major): Economics and Environmental Studies

Most impactful project
‘Cruising Tourism Environmental Impacts: Case Study of Dubrovnik, Croatia’, 2010; ‘The Emission of Toxic Metals from (Tourist, Nautical) Vessels’, 2018
Grant or funding information
Ministry of Tourism and Sport, Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure, Ministry of Science and Education, European Union

Hrvoje Carić is a distinguished author of scientific papers and projects that explore nautical tourism development and its adverse impacts, like toxic metal emissions from marine vessels.

He is a senior research associate at the Institute for Tourism in Zagreb, having joined the team in 2006. He earned his doctoral degree through the Inter-university Doctoral Program in Applied Marine Sciences at the University of Split and Dubrovnik. His expertise spans environmental science, marine pollution assessment, ecological and environmental economics, risk assessment, pollution valuation modelling, and nautical tourism. With a career extending over 28 years, Hrvoje has served in various roles including analyst, lecturer (for university students, local residents, and tourist workers), author, researcher, and active participant in ecological initiatives. Among his notable contributions is the project ‘Toxic Metal Emission from (Tourist, Nautical) Vessels’, a collaborative effort with scientists from the Ruđer Bošković Institute.

The Institute for Tourism is the only scientific public institute in Croatia specialized in tourist research and consulting. Established in 1959 as the Bureau for Investments in Tourism, its scope gradually broadened in the 1970s and 1980s to include not only the economic aspects of tourism, but also spatial, ecological, socio-cultural and other related issues. Interdisciplinary teams of scientists at the Institute explore the impacts of (hyper)tourism on various factors, including the environment, economy, and local communities. Their research encompasses a wide array of topics, such as the effects of nautical and tourist vessels on marine chemistry, the financial implications of pollution from cruise tourism, the impact of noise on residents, and the phenomenon of apartmentization. The Institute employs 30 people, including 20 PhD scientists. Their research and publications are dedicated to developing strategies, guidelines, and action plans for the development and management of tourism.

The research process is complex and demands a multidisciplinary approach to examining different phenomena caused by tourism. Hrvoje, along with his colleagues and scientist friends, established well-connected teams who work on self-initiated projects or projects commissioned by business clients or the government. These scientific projects are later published in peer-reviewed journals. The first step toward reaching valid and scientifically approved conclusions involves collecting relevant data. This process includes monitoring phenomena like anthropogenic influences, assessing biodiversity and risk assessment. Various instruments, such as radar or drone imagery, are used to measure and gather data from different sources. Depending on its complexity, this process can last up to a few years. Through the systematic collection of data, scientists can identify clear correlations between causes and consequences. This step is followed by an interpretation of the research implementation which is crucial to the further development of measures and strategies in tourism. One of the responsibilities of scientists is to notify the competent authorities if any potential dangers are uncovered. Although trends and data are constantly evolving, the knowledge, logic and methodology of the research become the legacy for future researchers who aspire to ecological tourism and sustainability.

Hrvoje’s research focuses on promoting ecological tourism and sustainability and the examination of the ecological impact of nautical tourism. One of his scientific papers, ‘Toxic Metal Emission from (Tourist, Nautical) Vessels’ (2018) developed in collaboration with scientists from the Institute of Ruđer Bošković, examines the impact of nautical tourism on copper concentrations in the estuary of the river Krka. Measurements have shown that the concentrations during the summer are ten times higher than during the rest of the year, corresponding with the increase in boat traffic during the tourist season. The accumulation of copper in the marine environment poses a danger to mariculture and human health. His doctoral research ‘Cruising Tourism Environmental Impacts: Case Study of Dubrovnik, Croatia’ compares the potential harms and benefits of cruise tourism in Dubrovnik. The findings reveal that the potential harm to Dubrovnik and its port, evidenced by the costs of hazardous and solid waste disposal, is already seven times higher than the profits generated from cruise tourism.