Global change, in particular changes in demographic patterns, in socioeconomic developments and in climate, significantly affects alpine tourism, especially ski tourism. In response, mainly technical means of adaptation in ski areas are being applied. After the analogue winter of 2006/07 the current kind of adaptation proofed to be not sustainable, neither in its effectiveness, nor in its ecological and economical future. To increase the adaptive capacity for long-term success in a sustainable way, additional adaptation measures are required, such as behavioural and mitigative strategies. In the coupled human-environment system of ski tourism sustainable adaptation also has to involve the customer more in adapting the demand side consumer behaviour to changing services of ski areas as opposed to maintaining the status quo as the only approach. Mitigational strategies in conjunction with demand side adaptation might lead to a potential new chance for suffering ski areas - a market of sustainable ski
tourism where a blended mix of adaptation strategies leads to win-win situations in ski tourism. In the research project SkiSustain we model the relation between global change, customer demand and supply side strategies to develop a vulnerability framework for ski tourism. It is meant to deliver a differentiated understanding of vulnerability and of sustainable adaptive capacity.