Among all the choices a society has, there are many types of “industries” that help create wealth. These range from the traditional smokestack industries (manufacturing), extraction industries (mining, agriculture, fishing) and construction to the broad range of services sectors. In most highly developed countries, the service sector accounts for as much as 80% or more of total employment and wealth creation. In developing nations that ratio may be nearly reversed. Certainly tourism can have a far different impact depending on the total context of a nation’s economic composition. I’d like for you to consider that matter throughout this course, particularly as you reflect on your assigned country of choice for the major project but also as a very important element of your work as you enter or continue in your careers in tourism.
The questions, though, for this week are basic –
Please respond to both of these questions:
1) In many cases tourism can have limitations for total economic development that other sectors MAY not (some will). These include the seasonal nature of tourism and the hardships that may bring, the need for many workers at very basic skill and compensation categories with little opportunity for mobility, and the tendency of tourism and its settings and infrastructure to be set apart from the life of the rest of a city or country (we have considered this already in a cultural context where tourists may be isolated from the real life of a particular Asian country; so also the economic gains and investments may not mix a great deal with the rest of the economy and its people. Please discuss how you think Asian societies deal with some of these challenges that may be unique to tourism? Are there examples in Asian which you think really stand out- positively or negatively? (as always, please try and include sources that you find helpful and interesting)
2) There is often much discussion about tourism as a “clean” industry- not very polluting (comparatively), outsiders spend their money to enjoy someone else’s environment, locales may gain benefit of enjoying the same venues as visitors, etc. Also think about the different roles of the public and private sectors in promoting tourism for development. There is currently a lot of debate in the US over the appropriate roles of public and private sectors in matters such as healthcare (we won’t deal with that- just an example). Are there instances where a similar type of broad debate occurs regarding tourism development? Are there national or local tourism “policies” from your knowledge of Asian nations (to direct the path of tourism, grow an industry sector, build infrastructure? Any examples? If so, who pays for this? Who should pay? (in this case, opinions are fine, try to rely on Asian examples and appropriate sources)