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Residents' response to tourism development: A case study of Varaždin

Tomljenović, Renata; Weber, Sanda; Telisman-Košuta, Neda
Residents' response to tourism development: A case study of Varaždin // Reinventing a tourism destination. Facing the Challenge / Weber, Sanda ; Tomljenović, Renata (ur.).
Zagreb: Institut za turizam, 2004. str. 219-232

Residents' response to tourism development: A case study of Varaždin

Tomljenović, Renata ; Weber, Sanda ; Telisman-Košuta, Neda

Vrsta, podvrsta i kategorija rada
Poglavlja u knjigama, znanstveni

Reinventing a tourism destination. Facing the Challenge

Weber, Sanda ; Tomljenović, Renata

Institut za turizam



Raspon stranica


Ključne riječi
Tourism, tourism development, tourism destination, Varaždin

With the increased importance of tourism for destinations worldwide, there is now an understanding that its success depends, at least partly, on the support its development gains from local communities, as residents have to cope with a range of social, economical and environmental impacts of tourism activity. Thus, it is not only critical that these impacts be monitored and managed but it is also advisable that residents’ views on tourism development be incorporated in the strategic planning process (Murphy 1981 ; Ritchie 1988). This is considered important for several reasons. Residents whose attitudes to tourism development are favourable are likely to behave in a friendly manner towards visitors (Ross 1992) and enhance tourists' satisfaction with their visit thus increasing destination attractiveness (Fredline and Faulkner 2000). Furthermore, as tourism development often necessitates heavy public investment, community preference may constrain or facilitate such developments (Prentice 1993). Finally, residents appropriately informed about tourism and supportive of tourism industry are more likely to act as ambassadors of their destination in promoting it to their relatives, friends and acquaintances (Shroeder 1993). This is especially important given the heavy reliance of potential visitors on recommendation and word of mouth when evaluating destination choice, and especially so for destinations at the incipient stage of tourism development with minimal marketing resources (Gartner 1993). While destinations need to regularly monitor these impacts and manage them accordingly, emerging tourism destinations with a relatively low number of visitors can accommodate residents’ views and preferences from the very outset of tourism development. This is especially important in urban context (Murphy 1981) where tourists’ and residents’ activity is often concentrated in a usually tight historical core and around major landmarks in the center of the city causing congestion and crowding. Such was the case of the Croatian town of Varaždin, where evaluation of residents' attitudes to tourism and their tourism development preferences was an integral step in developing a tourism vision for the town. Thus the purpose of this chapter is to present the results of the survey whose aim was to identify a range of positive and negative impacts of tourism perceived by the residents of Varaždin, their development preferences and their views on both positive and negative aspects of their town’ s tourism attractiveness. The second aim is to discuss how the results of the survey informed the process of visioning tourism development in Varaždin. The chapter starts with a literature review on social impact research and residents’ involvement in the planning process, followed by a description of the town in order to provide the necessary context for understanding tourism activity in the town. The results are then presented and their implications discussed in the last part of the chapter.

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