This chapter looks to analyse new paradigms in the relationship between public and private organisations towards tourism destinations. It proposes new approaches for increased performance both at the competitive and the organisational level. Based on the literature review, this chapter suggests new organisational forms of being and interaction directed at increased customer needs and growing competitiveness on the tourism industry. The development of public-private partnerships and knowledge networking in destinations and in organisations are issues also addressed. Furthermore, the implementation of interorganisational networks in a cooperative environment is important in developing and maintaining an adequate environment with shared objectives and practices in tourist destinations.
Tourism destination is closely linked to new experiences and associated memories. Although a composite unit representing a region’s supply, it is considered a paradigmatic example of virtual organisation.
As a setting comprising economic, cultural and social activities, the tourism destination has come to be understood as a product on offer, and thus the public institutions responsible for that destination and the regional tourism organisations operating within that destination see themselves as obliged to establish a set of facilities and actions that ensure the best possible positioning in a highly competitive market when it comes to attracting tourists (Beerli & Martin, 2004)
The studies carried out by Butler (1980), Gunn (1993), Laws (1995) and Pearce (1989) regard tourism destination as a system containing a number of components such as attractions, accommodation, transport and other services and facilities. The tourism destination generally comprises different types of complementary and competing organisations, multiple sectors, facilities and an array of public/private linkages that create a diverse and highly fragmented structure (Pavlovich, 2003).