Critical Review of Tourism in India

Critical Review of Tourism in India

Neeta Baporikar (Namibia University of Science and Technology, Namibia & University of Pune, India)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2078-8.ch010
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Tourism plays a pivotal role in socio-economic development. It fosters international understanding, trust among people and brings many social benefits. According to United Nations World Tourism Organization, travel and tourism can be part of the solution to world problems of poverty employment and sustainability. Today, tourism has grown to become a major social and economic force and it is a well-known fact. Hence, it certainly is an activity of global importance and significance. With abundant nature's gift, one of the oldest culture and civilization India as tourist destination is in an envious position to locus itself as one of the best global destination by adopting innovative and holistic tourism policies. Through exploratory and descriptive examination and in depth literature review of policy documents and reports, the aim of this chapter is review critically the tourism policies and intends to suggest new avenues and innovations in tourism.
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Literature Review

Tourism policy is an important area for study because of its practical and theoretical importance. Tourism is of practical significance as international travel requires government cooperation in, for example, bilateral airline negotiations, decisions about provision of facilities and services, interactions with other sectors, use of publicly ‘owned’ resources such as national parks as attractions, the issuing of tourist visas and in the funding of marketing of particular destinations (Ahmed & Krohn, 1990). However, study of tourism policy is a herculean task for many reasons. A first reason is that tourism policy, explicitly or implicitly involves beliefs and values, about what is good and bad. Policy concerns goals and allocation of resources in situations, and to social problems, sometimes called ‘wicked’ problems (Rittel & Weber, 1973), where there is no clear answer. Policy is seen as complex (McDonald, 2009) requires system and complexity thinking (Farrell & Twining-Ward, 2005), and is best dealt with as a complex adaptive system. In many policy-related studies there is a ‘tourism as industry’ perspective that may, for example, examine how destinations can secure a competitive edge in increasingly global consumer markets (Ritchie & Crouch, 2000). According to Bramwell and Lane (2006), “as distinctly positivist and empirical in outlook; it leaves the impression that it is dealing with objective, value-free or neutral knowledge” (p. 1). The alternative is to consider tourism policy as a domain for examination of concepts such as trust, collaboration, social identity, the exercise of power, and so on; and best viewed through a variety of disciplinary and ideological ‘lenses’, that are becoming increasingly diverse, especially as researchers work at, and sometimes cut across, different levels (macro, meso, micro) of analysis (Jenkins, 2001). Studies of tourism public policies provide useful insights into who gets what, when, and why in the tourism policy process, and might also make a contribution to better informed government decision-making and policy-making (Hall & Jenkins, 2004).

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