Stakeholder involvement in urban tourism development: A tale of two cities


Raffay, Agnes 2007. Stakeholder involvement in urban tourism development: A tale of two cities. Thesis
AuthorsRaffay, Agnes
Qualification namePhD

This thesis began with the identification of a challenging issue in the practical management of urban tourism development. The debates about how to manage urban tourism, the benefits of collaboration and partnership building were interesting but seemed to be interpreted differently in both the different strands of the literature and in the specific destinations. The focus on stakeholders was an emergent theme from the literature. It had become a significant term in the business and management literature and was, following on the work on collaboration and sustainable tourism, becoming a popular term in the tourism literature. However it was apparent from studying the literature that the term was both complex and under theorised, especially in the tourism literature. Therefore the literature review was designed to identify the context in which stakeholders existed and in which stakeholder analysis could take place. The way in which the issues were generated for the field work was the product of critical readings of the texts. The review suggested that the dynamics of urban tourism were very complex and more so than stakeholder analysis predicated on a single organisation would suggest. The range of positions within the process suggested that terms such as involvement, participation and collaboration had to be questioned in terms of power relations and power differentials in what emerged as processes rather than a single process. The questioning of the power literature suggested that a discursive approach to the construction of stakeholder analysis would be the most appropriate as the key players sought to develop their sense of power from within a range of discourses and the flexibility of such accounts offered an appropriate way to capture the fluid dynamism of the urban tourism processes.
A field methodology based on qualitative research was developed to allow the respondents, who were identified as the key players in tourism in the two Hungarian cities, the opportunity to create their own representations of the ways they saw tourism development in their two cities. Two case studies were pursued as a way of highlighting similarities and differences in the processes, in the patterns of involvement and the power relationships. The conclusions develop an account of power that is constructed and deconstructed within urban tourism processes by the exercise of discursive constructs from both within and outside the domain of tourism. Even traditional accounts of power fitted into the discursive practices analysed. Thus, the thesis has developed an original contribution by deepening our understanding of the concept of stakeholders within urban tourism development and seeking to establish that a critical understanding of discursive practices is an integral part of mapping the stakeholder positions within those processes. A series of propositions are presented that represent the major contributions of the thesis to tourism knowledge and management knowledge. These are presented in a standardised format of establishing the basis of the claim and then exploring the implications for practice and further research.

Keywordsurban tourism development ; sustainable tourism ; stakeholder positions
PublisherUniversity of Derby
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Output statusUnpublished
Publication process dates
Deposited31 Jan 2020, 14:58
Publication dates2007
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