Topic: Heritage management (manage visitors. services. safeguarding built heritage. from tourism point of view
Tourism is a major industry and strong economic vehicle that makes a significant contribution to overall national economy. (Nicolette de Sausmarez, 2007) Tourism for many individuals is about enjoyment and having fun, for governments tourism is generator of important foreign exchange and job creator for allied industries. Tourist industry has a major impact on host country’s civil society and social landscape. Tourism provides economic
benefits and influences the local residents in many other ways as well (Oui, 2005). Tourists are exposed to local politics implicitly by being exposed to conditions that are present for local residents.
Only countries with safe and stable image draw tourists in abandon, so in other ways increasing levels of tourists imply an endorsements of concerned location’s ambient environment. Political regimes are indirectly bolstered by tourists, therefore tourism not only aids in economic development but for international support of governmental policies (Oui, 2005). In case of a crisis or disaster, economy is disturbed and livelihood of many may be affected. Crisis indicators may be useful in highlighting areas of concern and minimize affects on tourism. The damage to tourist destination may be substantial, as in the case of SARS outbreak or Bali bombings and full recovery may take a significant time and effort. Crisis management requires intervention to manage the situation from deteriorating and to minimize damage caused. (Nicolette de Sausmarez, 2007)
Heritage tourism UK
As Emma (2006) reports tourists are drawn to Britain because of its rich and varied heritage and by preserving and maintaining tourism industry in UK could be improved further. British governments have been using tourism as a political and social leverage – an
instrument of leisure as well as a political instrument. Leisure and recreational policies were
employed to mitigate the effects of large scale unemployment and other problems in UK during the 1980’s. Thatch eristic policies used tourism for regeneration of cities and towns. Such socio economic changes may not be highly welcome in a developed city as stakeholders are not very open to encroachment of aliens on their ways of living and working. Influence of men with vision can transform towns into tourist industries. Bohan and Elbe describe how Alvaden, Sweden was successfully turned into a tourist destination without being an expert in tourism development - the important point is cooperation amongst stakeholders (Kriyaki, 2004). Kriyaki also mentions new tourism trends as a function of the increasing aging population and the prevalent consumer segments.
`Sustainable tourism' refers to the improved social and environmental impact of all forms of tourism including mass tourism (Timothy, 1997). Some of the principles of sustainable tourism include: Conservation of resources including social and cultural resources; reducing excessive consumption and ensuing waste, thus minimizing long term damages of over consumption; diversity is essential for producing a strong base; tourism should be intermixed with planning, both national and local strategic level; supporting local economic initiatives and incorporates environmental costs and values; involvement of local communities in the tourism sector, cross benefiting both the communities and environment; stakeholders and public are to be kept apprised at all times to foster long term cooperation and reduce conflicts; appropriate training by using local staff at all levels to improve the deliverable product; marketing responsibly to end users to enhance customer satisfaction and increase respect for socio cultural environment and finally undertaking continual research and data analysis to resolve problems and to bring benefits to end tourist destinations and overall tourist industry. (Timothy, 1997)
Regulation of tourism industry is difficult because of inherent complex nature of the industry – tourism is a combination of activities from transport to hotel management with each activity having a different business objective. UK tourism market is extremely price competitive and suffers from decreasing margins as competition becomes intense, so the focus is on short term profit taking rather than long term sustainability. Thus tourism development may be cyclical climbing rapidly and then declining at the same time shows virtual incapacity of individual companies to make or introduce change by themselves. Consumer perceptions
Survey to identify tourism industry’s own perceptions about sustainable tourism and self regulation about environment responsibility identified practices like cost cutting, value adding, long term investment and governmental legislation. These practices were selectively followed with tour operators restricting themselves to offering environment friendly or “green” holidays, hotel industry opting for cost cutting measures and travel agents avoiding most of the practices. It was generally believed that legislation would be necessary to produce long lasting changes. A 1993 survey indicated willingness of almost half of local consumers to pay extra premium for guaranteed clean beach and sand, hence what tourists perceive to be desirable is of paramount importance in any form of sustainable self or governmental legislation. Hence quality parameter may be added to qualify sustainable practices and make sustainable practice more attractive to commercial interests of the companies.
Tourism like other industries has significant impact on environment, however effective regulation in this industry may be difficult because of inherent complex nature of this industry and the very fact that its main end product, recreation is perceived and experienced differently by each customer. Thus sustainable tourism may require change in current practices of both marketers and the incumbents for better identification of common ground and for making sure that customers get this message more effectively. (Timothy, 1997)
ICT as tourism enabler
Internet by its very nature has changed the traditional paradigm of doing business. Internet allows for rapid dissemination of quality information, universal accessibility and minimal cost for deliverance. (L. Rayman & A. Molina, 2001)
Online access of services has reduced the distribution costs, so the end product could be individually customized according to perceptions and needs of the customer. Take the case of Amazon.com, here each visit will customize the environment in accordance with the shown preference of customer during prior visits. Internet businesses are helping in growth and evolution in e-commerce aspects of tourism industry.
ICT hasn’t helped in all places as British Airways experience tells us. It though earlier
that it could do away with independent travel management companies and sell only though its website, however it found that by reducing point of focus BA has reduced its visibility so it decided to reengage with travel management companies (Travel Trade, 2007)
European economic dominion may have changed significantly since the turn of the century as concept of individual entities, as country, have shifted to single EU umbrella, leading to globalization of trade practices and significant changes in multiple allied economic sectors. ICT is considered one main reason for this restructuring, and ICT has been one of the
as ICT practices are major factors which has impacted on the service areas and enterprises –
assimilated and incorporated.
Newer ways of competing and cooperating are slowly becoming accepted and changing face of business competition have allowed introduction of more individualistic form of holidays which could be better fine tuned to individual customer. The global market advantage is also driven by access of services like transnational banking and enquiry systems, single currency across EU and interactive internet based booking systems. European tourism accounts for almost 50% of global tourism and is thus a major generator of business. It has
become much easier for customer to find specific right deals through customized and most economical package. Priceline.com and Travelocity are but small examples of tailored services available at no extra cost to savvy customer and internet based travel transactions have become a significant portion of travel sales.
With increase in telecom developments travelers have become more eager for specific and detailed travel information – internet can easily whet the appetite of even the most
demanding of the customers, and internet has become and enabling technology for the industry. Tourism has become a large constituent of internet based commerce and resultant increasing competition for end users and evolving models of online tourism has given end consumer additional advantage in accessing services in full richer, sensory, multimedia availability to give hitherto unimagined experiences to the consumer. Competitive landscape of Internet based services, including tourism, is growing by leaps and bounds giving way to full sensory experiences of distant lands without leaving the computer and possibly without ever visiting! (L. Rayman & A. Molina, 2001)
ICT is lowering cost and risk factors to entrepreneurs who want to compete in niche markets. The availability and diversity of information in unprecedented, quantitative (weather conditions, pricing and availability of seats, flight tracking) and qualitative data (cultural conditions, environment, multimedia repository of information to encyclopedic level). There are more opportunities to differentiate with incorporating more culturally sensitive sites, beyond language into that for example found in Spanish Tourist Office. (L. Rayman & A. Molina, 2001)
Northern Ireland’s Rathlin Island represents positive developments in the sustainable tourism genre. This area is one of the most scenic bird and marine life sanctuaries and has been being designated as special conservation area. Tourism has taken on increasing role in
the island’s development, a sustainable tourism strategy is important to enhance the visitor experience. A study was conducted involving local residents and stakeholders to compare tourism resources with other comparable destinations so that this resort could be developed to attract more visitors while safeguarding the natural beauty and scenery of the resort. This vision for Rathlin island can later be replicated all across UK, mentioned David Erwin, chairman of Causeway Coast and Glens Heritage Trust. (The Newsletter, 2005) Disabled tourists
Tourism visits to UK tourist attractions have been dominated by domestic tourists, who at times make up to 65% of the total tourists. Disabled persons are very small percentage of the total visitors to historical environments. There have been major initiatives on inclusions in the historic environments so that more disabled people could access these resources. Disabled people still face restrictive choices in comparison, compromise solutions include service provisioning to disabled in an alternative manner. However social policies for inclusion may need to be examined in more detail so that increased access to disabled is provisioned for the disabled. Furthermore by providing initial investment, government may soon be able to recover its investment as increased number of disabled start visiting historic resorts. (Brian et al, 2004)
Whenever a potential tourist thinks of a place he or she has an image, be it perceived or real and similarly the tourist would respond better if the marketing image corresponds to the image he already has in his mind. Organic images are thus referred to as images that have become rooted in traditions, linked with heritage, history and culture. According to Graham Hickinson (2004) these images have been formed over a long period of time and marketing may or may not change perceptions about these core images. Reputation of a place as well as
people’s assumptions and presumptions, biases and opinions all color the respective organic
image of the concerned place.
These core organic images that are derived from attributes of heritage, culture and history are useful for promoting embodiment of these very values as tourist destination. These results are very important for tourism and destination marketers as these organic images have a strong bearing in determining perceptions and thus become useful for successful positioning promotions, especially if resources are constrained.
If the destination has long political historical base then the organic image may be strongly positive – and therefore the image needs to be nurtured – by maintaining the
respective site and its environment. Industrial decline, if over a long period, may mar the organic image. Negative images cannot be changed through marketing alone, but may require refurbishment of the end product itself. Further destinations seeking repositioning and continued positive images need to maintain a steady stream of marketing and public relation campaigns. Image attributes are dependent on history, heritage and cultural elements, so image building and brand equity measures should partake of wide ranging attributes that constitute the brand images, and narrow focused images may veer off the mark.
Organic image is not the sole criteria in building perception, it does help create ambience of the place, the marketers have to be aware of this and not only extol the virtues of the promoted place, manner in which promotion is done is very important. Advertising should support the core image to be more effective and message should be balanced with a place with not so strongly positive image. Organic image may be central to success of theme, especially if it is tied in with other aspects of marketing. (Graham, 2004) Travel Planning
Leisure travel accounts for 31% of all trips in the UK, so travel plans are thought of as ideal way to change travel behavior – this helps in reducing car travel time, encourage car
pooling, more usage of public transport services and more provisions for pedestrians and cyclists. Travel plans for leisure trip may not work in the traditional way as the leisure trip makers may not be familiar with the place or travel choices, hence tourists need to be better informed and advised. (Jo Guiver, 2006)
Cities that have not been traditionally seen as tourist destinations are becoming tourist favorites, but to make it so involves differentiated marketing. The marketers need to broaden their approach target various strengths rather than focus on one unique selling proposition (USP). The quality of visitor services and resultant experience is quite significant rather than availability of multiple services and visitor attractions. Development as a cultural tourist attraction requires host of interrelated factors, many of which may be specific to that place USP, like the study in Glasgow suggests. (Clare Murphy & Emily Boyle, 2005).
Sustainable tourism involves more accountability at the management level while it also increases the onus on tourists, who largely show resistance to messages of sustainability, and help of NGO might be required to effectuate tourist’s mind set change (Kristen et. al, 2007)
Sustainable tourism may allow redefining tourism from its traditional image that are not very helpful for equitable development. Market demands may push otherwise however sustainable tourism may require change in campaigns of both marketers and industry (Timothy, 1997)
Kyriaki Kaplanidou. Tourism in Western Europe: A Collection of Case Histories.: Journal of
Leisure Research. Volume: 36. Issue: 2. Publication Year: 2004. Page Number: 288+. Ooi Can Seng. State-Civil Society Relations and Tourism: Singaporeanizing Tourists,
Touristifying Singapore: SOJOURN: Journal of Social Issues in Southeast Asia.
Volume: 20. Issue: 2. Publication Year: 2005. Page Number: 249+.
G.J. Ashworth. Urban Dimension of Tourism. Contributors: Journal of the American Planning
Association. Volume: 70. Issue: 4. Publication Year: 2004. Page Number: 497 Timothy Forsyth. Environmental Responsibility and Business Regulation: The Case of
Sustainable Tourism: Journal Title: The Geographical Journal. Volume: 163. Issue: 3.
Publication Year: 1997. Page Number: 270+.
Rayman-Bacchus, A. Molina. Internet-Based Tourism Services: Business Issues and Trends:
Futures. Volume: 33. Issue: 7. Publication Year: 2001. Page Number: 589. Island's Tourism Strategy Launched. Newspaper Title: The News Letter. Publication Date:
October 25, 2005. Page Number: 6.
Brian Goodall, Gaye Pottinger, Tim Dixon, Henry Russell. Heritage property, tourism and the
UK Disability Discrimination Act. Property Management. Bradford: 2004. Vol. 22, Iss.
5; pg. 345, 13 pgs
Graham Hankinson. The brand images of tourism destinations: A study of the saliency of
organic images. The Journal of Product and Brand Management. Santa Barbara: 2004.
Vol. 13, Iss. 1; pg. 6
Clare Murphy & Emily Boyle. Testing a conceptual model of cultural tourism development in
the post-industrial city: A case study of Glasgow. Tourism and Hospitality Research,
Vol. 6, No. 2, 2006, pp. 111–128
Kirsten Holmes , Peter Jones , Andrew Lockwood ,Graham Miller , Caroline Scarles , Edith
Szivas and John Tribe. An eclectic agenda for Tourism and Hospitality Research.
Tourism and Hospitality Research (2007) 7, 76 – 82.
Nicolette de Sausmarez. Crisis Management, Tourism and Sustainability: The Role of
Indicators. Journal Of Sustainable Tourism. Vol. 15, No. 6, 2007
Chris Blandford. Management Plans for UK World Heritage Sites: Evolution, Lessons and
Good Practice. Landscape Research, Vol. 31, No. 4, 355 – 362, October 2006
Lesley-Ann Wilson & Emily Boyle. Interorganisational collaboration at UK World Heritage
Sites. Leadership & Organization Development Journal Vol. 27 No. 6, 2006 pp. 501-
-27 BA turns back to small TMCs. Travel Trade Gazette. 12, October 2007-11Michael Cronin & Barbara O’Connor. Irish Tourism Image Culture and Identity. Vol. 7, No. 4,
444–452, November 2005