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Urban Tourism and Evolutionary Economic Geography: Complexity and Co-evolution in Contested Spaces
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Tourism Studies and Geography. School of Tourism and Hospitality, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Tourism Studies and Geography. Department of Geography, Geology, and Planning, Missouri State University, Springfield, MO, United States .ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3549-750X
2014 (English)In: Urban Forum, ISSN 1015-3802, E-ISSN 1874-6330, Vol. 25, no 4, 419-430 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Urban tourism is an important research topic whether in mass tourism resortareas where tourism is the economic staple or in metropolitan areas where it is one (ormore) development path(s) among many. Urban areas are dynamic and fast-pacedenvironments but are also places where social and economic inequalities are moststark. Economic geography is one theoretical perspective through which researchersaddress urban tourism. The recent“evolutionary turn”in economic geography isfinding its way to tourism studies but has only been applied to a few urban tourismcases. This paper sets out the potential of evolutionary economic geography (EEG) as aconceptual framework for urban tourism studies. The analysis draws on recent studiesof urban tourism from an evolutionary perspective to highlight the strengths of takingsuch an approach and a number of avenues yet to be explored are put forward. Urbantourism affects large numbers of residents and businesses as well as influencing labourflows, and so understanding the dynamic nature of its development paths is vital.Tourism development does not occur in a vacuum, and urban tourism is one area wherethe complexity of the tourism economy and its place within broader regional develop-ment strategies is most obvious. Under recent neoliberal policies of urban development,tourism has become closely associated with place-based competition and large capitalinvestments. Urban tourism also enters the fray in matters of contested urban spaceswith issues of local governance, such as privatisation of public space, moving increas-ingly to the fore. The paper concludes with a list of future approaches to evolutionarystudies of urban tourism to broaden the scope beyond the dominant financial metrics oftourism success.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Dordrecht: Springer, 2014. Vol. 25, no 4, 419-430 p.
Keyword [en]
complexity, co-evolution. evolutionary economic geography, tourism, urban
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-23769DOI: 10.1007/s12132-014-9239-zScopus ID: 2-s2.0-84922100808Local ID: ETOUROAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-23769DiVA: diva2:771765
Available from: 2014-12-15 Created: 2014-12-15 Last updated: 2016-09-29Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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