Community understanding of the impact of temporary visitors on incidental destinations: Community Development Vol. 41, No. 3, July–September 2010, 340–353

Community understanding of the impact of temporary visitors on incidental destinations.

Ken Simpson: Department of Management, Unitec Institute of Technology, Private Bag 92-025, Auckland,New Zealand

Phil Bretherton: School of Law and Business, Charles Darwin University, Darwin, NT, Australia

Influential changes in global economics have posed important survival and sustainability questions for small urban communities. In response, many such communities have turned to the tourism industry as a potential economic saviour,and have thus embarked on a developmental journey that has been exhaustively examined in the tourism literature of the past thirty years. However, this literature is all but unanimous in examining the benefits and costs of community tourism after the event, when those costs and benefits have become clearly evident and significantly entrenched. In seeking to evaluate the extent to which residents of four small cities are aware of potential costs and benefits, before the advent of any significant tourism activity, this paper analyses the content of 782 responses to a written survey procedure. Results indicate a generally realistic local awareness of the economic aspects of increased tourism activity, but an over-optimistic assessment of environmental impacts, societal impacts, and the ability of local stakeholders to successfully manage the process of tourism industry development.

Community DevelopmentVol. 41, No. 3, July–September 2010, 340–353 (Australian Research Council Ranking 2010: A –

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