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Analysing Policy Makers Cognitive Maps for Sustainable Tourism Policies in Hersonissos Crete
2006 (English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Systems approaches to tourism studies have long been developed to denote the need for a holistic thinking in developing and managing tourism. However, during the last few years emphasis is being placed on the study of sustainable tourism in a complex systems approach to denote the need for understanding the complexity and non-linearities involved. Cognitive maps have been well examined in organisational learning, strategy formulation and policy analysis to structure and manage complex problems. However, their use in sustainable tourism studies is a rather unexplored field. In the present research cognitive maps of policy makers in Hersonissos, a tourist destination in Crete, Greece, were analysed to identify key issues in policies for sustainable tourism and explore their relationships. Subsequently, their emergent properties in terms of content and structure were compared across individual maps. Analysis and comparisons revealed perceived interrelatedness of policies, similarities and differences as to the key issues, relationships and perceived complexity of the domain investigated. Policy issues are interwoven into a net rather than following simple linear chains with a single outcome, with differences in their construal as perceived by different individuals. This suggests that policy formulation should consider potential nets instead of fragmenting policies. The whole analysis was based on both the structure and the content of the concepts with an emphasis being placed on the construal of the maps. In this way policies were examined and analysed as nets of interlinked issues contributing to the examination of sustainable tourism policy in a complex systems perspective illustrative of values and different pathways to achieve it.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
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Social and Economic Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-23783OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-23783DiVA: diva2:1060546
In CD-ROM of the International Scientific Conference Cutting Edge Research in Tourism, University of Surrey, Guildford, UK, 6-9 June 2006.
Available from: 2016-12-28 Created: 2016-12-28 Last updated: 2016-12-29Bibliographically approved

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Farsari, Ioanna
Social and Economic Geography

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