Diverse networks in regional tourism: ties that foster and hinder the development of rural-urban tourism collaboration in Estonia
Keywords:rural-urban tourism networking; multi-grounded theory; social network theory; social network analysis; stakeholder theory; actor network theory; Pärnu region in Estonia
This study investigates the collaborative ties between rural and urban tourism enterprises and their networks in the post-communist Pärnu region of Estonia. For that, two research questions were answered: what is the nature of collaborative ties between entrepreneurs and sub-networks in a tourist region and how different ties between regional tourism networks foster and hinder the development process of rural-urban tourism network? This study bases on stakeholder theory, actor-network theory, social network analysis, and social network theory, uses multi- grounded theory as a methodology, and qualitative data from semi-structured interviews with the regional tourism actors. Results indicate mutually beneficial relationships between prominent and small urban enterprises. Prominent urban enterprises gain by services offered by small enterprises, the latter benefit by the visitors brought in the town by the big ones. Regular collaboration is a common practice among rural enterprises. However, a collaboration between rural and urban entrepreneurs and networks at the regional level is minimal. However, some collaborative ties between tourism enterprises in a regional network exist between urban and rural entrepreneurs in different collaboration levels. The urban tourism network influences regional tourism much more than rural networks does.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Tarmo Pilving, Tiiu Kull, Monika Suškevics, Ants-Hannes Viira
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