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  • 1.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    FOMO – Fear of Missing Out2022In: Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing / [ed] Buhalis, Dimitrios, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2022Chapter in book (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    Guides as Forest Experience Co-creators: Lessons Learned at Fulufjället National Park, Sweden2021In: Managing Visitor Experiences in Nature-based Tourism / [ed] J. Albrecht, CABI Publishing, 2021Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This chapter explores the role of tour guides as human experience brokers of naturalness in forest areas. After outlining conceptual discussions around the role and tasks of the guide as experience broker, empirical findings from Fulufjället National Park (Sweden) are presented, showing the guide as a pivotal forest experience co-creator. Implications are discussed, with particular emphasis on how the guide's personal valuations of the forest, background and personal aims are reflected in the guide's pathfinding, storytelling and staging strategies, and on how tourists are positively impacted by unexpected and different ways of valuing, mapping and interpreting the forest landscape.

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  • 3.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    JOMO – Joy of Missing Out2022In: Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2022Chapter in book (Refereed)
  • 4.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Nature-based tourism and experience value co-creation on Instagram2018Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 5.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Tourism experiences in forest areas: An exploration of industry cases2019Report (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
  • 6.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    Farsari, Ioanna
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    Disconnection as a performative act in nature-based tourism experiences2021In: INVTUR2021 online Conference, University of Aveiro, Portugal, May 6-7 2021, 2021Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Objectives 

    A large part of the growing body of literature on the use of ICTs  and mobile technologies in tourism has examined the adaption and embracement of mobile technologies in tourism and the impact it brings in tourist experiences, often in advocative approaches (Neuhofer, Buhalis & Ladkin, 2012; Buhalis & Foerste, 2015). Nevertheless, an increasing number of authors have been commenting on the disruptive character of these technologies with the research pointing to the tourists’ loss of sense of place, disengagement and alienation caused by the perceived invasiveness of technology on the overall nature-based experience (Silas et al. 2016, White & White 2007, Gretzel 2010, Tribe & Mkono 2017). Although trends related to disconnection have been acknowledged in the form of ‘digital detox’ and ‘digital switch-off’ holidays (Elmahdy, Haukeland & Fredman, 2017; Gretzel, 2014), a relatively limited number of studies has looked into tourists desire to “disconnect” from ICTs and mobile connectivity in nature-based tourist experience (Dickinson et al. 2016; Paris et al. 2015). Current research regarding connectedness and disconnectedness in tourism experiences has followed rather dualistic, dichotomising approaches. For example, research has looked into the enforced disconnectedness as experienced in “technology dead zones” or as deliberate disconnectedness in technology-free zones (Pearce and Gretzel 2012); or technology as a barrier or an opportunity in experiencing the natural environment (Dickinson et al 2016). Dickinson et al. discussed also the dilemma of ‘to use or not to use’ mobile technologies as a “double edge sword” (p. 196) as experienced by users in campsites.ICT and mobile technology use and value creation in nature-based experiences along with the negotiation of tourists’ connectivity is a relatively understudied topic which would require further investigation (Dickinson et al. 2016; Gundersen & Frivold 2008; Vespestad & Lindberg 2011).

    In this paper, we examine connectedness and disconnectedness in nature-based experiences as positions in a continuum. Instead of examining mobile technology use in nature-based activities as something inherently “good” or “bad” which either advances or destructs the experience, we try to understand the different positioning that tourists can have on a continuum, which embrace both disconnection and connectivity as performative valuing acts (Baka 2015). In doing so, we move from the dominant post-positivist approaches of technology (Munar et al. 2013), which are reflected on how connectivity and disconnection are investigated in nature-based tourism. By adopting a performative view, we examine how and why subjective ideas of disconnection and connection are constructed and performed within the tourist experience of natural areas. This could contribute to answering the question of how disconnection is subjectively negotiated with being connected (Dickinson et al. 2016; Neuhorfer 2016). 

    Methodology Qualitative, semi-structured interviews at international visitors in Fulufjället National Park, Sweden, was the method of data collection. Interviews took place right after their visit to the park and were recorded, transcribed and thematically analysed. A total of 36 interviewees were part of this research.

    Main Results and Contributions Preliminary analysis indicate that tourists seek for some control over their connectivity while outdoors in the park. Although a clear articulation of the need to disconnect has been expressed during interviews, this is negotiated from complete disconnectedness to partial one, allowing information, orientation and safety reasons to use it. Furthermore, this negotiated disconnectedness was found to form part of a broader disconnectedness from their every-day life. Disconnecting from their mobiles and technology act as a performance of their escapism from their ordinary lives and work. This is better understood as a performative act of disconnecting from ordinary life and connecting back to nature and the inner self.

    Limitations 

    This research builds on a limited number of interviews in a single case-study. Further research would be necessitated to explore further the findings. The findings offer also the ground for the development of further quantitative surveys.

    Conclusions 

    This research contributes to a rather understudied field, that of ICT and mobile connectivity use in nature-based experiences with empirical data from Sweden. The resulting knowledge contributes to a better understanding on the mediating role of ICTs as contributors or destructors in nature-based experiences and visitors value creation in these experiences. At a theoretical level, the research introduces the notion of a continuum in connectedness/disconnectedness in nature-based activities and the understanding of it as a performative act.

    References 

    Baka, V. (2015). Understanding valuing devices in tourism through “place-making”. Valuation Studies, 3(2), 149-180.

    Buhalis, D., & Foerste, M. (2015). SoCoMo marketing for travel and tourism: Empowering co-creation of value. Journal of Destination Marketing & Management, 4(3), 151-161.

    Dickinson, J. E., Hibbert, J. F., & Filimonau, V. (2016). Mobile technology and the tourist experience: (Dis)connection at the campsite. Tourism Management, 57, 193–201

    Elmahdy, Y. M., Haukeland, J. V., & Fredman, P. (2017). Tourism megatrends, a literature review focused on nature-based tourism. MINA fagrapport 32, Norwegian University of Life Sciences.

    Gretzel, U. (2010). Travel in the network: Redirected gazes, ubiquitous connections and new frontiers. Post-global network and everyday life, 41–58.

    Gretzel, U. (2014). Travel Unplugged: The case of Lord Howe Island, Australia. In Proceedings of the TTRA Canada annual conference. Yellowknife, Canada, september 24–26. 

    Gundersen, V. S., & Frivold, L. H. (2008). Public preferences for forest structures: a review of quantitative surveys from Finland, Norway and Sweden. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 7(4), 241-258.

    Munar, A. M., Gyimóthy, S., & Cai, L. (Eds.) (2013). Tourism social media: Transformations in identity, community and culture. Emerald Group Publishing.

    Neuhofer, B., Buhalis, D. & Ladkin, A., (2012). Conceptualising technology enhanced destination experiences. Journal of Destination Marketing & Management, 1(1-2), 36-46.

    Neuhofer, B. (2016). Value co-creation and co-destruction in connected tourist experiences. In Information and communication technologies in tourism 2016 (pp. 779-792). Springer, Cham. 

    Silas, E., Løvlie, A. S., & Ling, R. (2016). The smartphone’s role in the contemporary backpacking experience. Networking Knowledge: Journal of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network, 9(6), 40–55.

    Tribe, J., & Mkono, M. (2017). Not such smart tourism? The concept of e-lienation. Annals of Tourism Research, 66, 105–115.

    Vespestad, M. K., & Lindberg, F. (2011). Understanding nature-based tourist experiences: An ontological analysis. Current Issues in Tourism, 14(6), 563-580.

    White, N. R., & White, P. B. (2007). Home and away: Tourists in a connected world. Annals of Tourism Research, 34(1), 88–104.

  • 7.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies. Dalarna University, Falun, Sweden.
    Farsari, Ioanna
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies. Dalarna University.
    Disconnection in nature-based tourism experiences: an actor-network theory approach2022In: Annals of Leisure Research, ISSN 1174-5398, p. 1-18Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent studies question whether ubiquitous connectivity via mobiles represents an enhancer and facilitator in nature-based tourism experiences or a potential destructor to disconnect from. We argue that extant research approaches cannot fully grasp the complexity of the connectivity-disconnection dilemma, specifically how tourists appropriate, reinterpret, reshape, and negotiate with meanings inscribed in mobiles and how such negotiations link to valuations of nature-based experiences. This research adopts an interpretivist approach and uses actor-network theory to investigate negotiations of connectivity and their experiential meanings through field interviews in Fulufjället National Park, Sweden. Results reveal translations of social connectivity, facilitation of information and orientation as thematic cores of tourists’ embodiments of mobile connectivity. Results also show how the comprehensive tourismscape where such embodiments find meaning contributes to tourists’ definitions of disconnection. Such definitions comprise human and non-human actors on site, off site, and cannot be exhausted by essentialist dualisms between being plugged and unplugged.

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  • 8.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies. Mittuniversitetet.
    Heldt Cassel, Susanna
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Human Geography.
    Liminality in nature-based tourism experiences as mediated through social media2020In: Tourism Geographies, ISSN 1461-6688, E-ISSN 1470-1340, Vol. 22, no 2, p. 413-432Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The intersection between social media, liminality and nature-based tourism experiences hasn't been the focus of previous tourism research. Such intersection, on the other hand, is illustrative of how social media relate to the constitution and performance of tourism spatialities, tourist identities, storytelling and place-making, and can lead to relevant theoretical contributes. We aim to investigate how liminality is expressed in relation to nature-based experiences by tourists on social media, and what role social media plays in mediating liminality during nature-based tourism experiences. The analysis is based on a participatory netnography of images and text posts, as well as online interviews with users of the popular social media Instagram. Findings show that the expression of tourism experiences in nature is closely related to specific notions of liminal otherness as opposed to the urban life and the everyday, where nature and wilderness are expressed as related to the genuine, the authentic and a true inner self. Creative combinations of pictures, captions and hashtags make it easier for tourists to express the contrast between the natural landscape and the everyday landscape once they returned home. These combinations also relate closely to performances of resistant and alternative selves and communities. At the same time, such performances are mediated and contested between freedom of self-expression, surveillance and social norms, an aspect that makes their liminal nature ambiguous.

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  • 9.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Heldt Cassel, Susanna
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Human Geography.
    Upplevelsevärden inom naturbaserad turism i skogen2020In: Skogen som resurs i en gränsregion, Karlstads universitet, 2020, p. 93-100Chapter in book (Refereed)
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  • 10.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies. European Tourism Research Institute (ETOUR), Mid Sweden University.
    Lexhagen, Maria
    European Tourism Research Institute (ETOUR), Mid Sweden University.
    Instagramming nature-based tourism experiences: a netnographic study of online photography and value creation2020In: Tourism Management Perspectives, ISSN 2211-9736, E-ISSN 2211-9744, Vol. 34, article id 100650Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this research is to explore the role of online photography in creating experience value in nature-based tourism, and what types of experience value are conveyed through photography-based user-generated content. The paper draws from existing literature in defining tourism experience value as a subjective, inter-subjective and inter-contextual construct, performed by situated valuation practices. Consequently, the paper presents interpretive and participatory netnography as an effective method to investigate experience value, and identifies online photography on Instagram as both a valuing practice and a valuing place. Results show the capability of online photography-based UGC to create multidimensional values from strategic combinations of textual and visual content. Simultaneously, new dimensions of experience value are introduced, which exist beyond single tourism experiential encounters, but critically contribute to an iterative experience valuation. Finally, Instagram posts introduce valuation timelines that can elude linear models of pre/in-situ/post-experience valuation, and assume subjective and fluid connotations.

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  • 11.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Lexhagen, Maria
    Investigating tourists’ valuations of nature-based experiences through online photography2019Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 12.
    Conti, Eugenio
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Lexhagen, Maria
    Valuing Nature on Instagram2018Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 13.
    Heldt Cassel, Susanna
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Human Geography.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Tourism Studies.
    Skogsbaserade naturupplevelser på digitala plattformar2020In: Skogen som resurs i en gränsregion, Karlstads universitet, 2020, p. 103-109Chapter in book (Refereed)
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  • 14. Lexhagen, Maria
    et al.
    Conti, Eugenio
    Dalarna University, School of Culture and Society, Tourism Studies.
    Instagramming2022In: Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing, Edward Elgar Publishing, 2022Chapter in book (Refereed)
1 - 14 of 14
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