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Tourism governance and sustainable national development in China: a macro-level synthesis


Sofield, T and Li, S, Tourism governance and sustainable national development in China: a macro-level synthesis, Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 19, (4-5) pp. 501-534. ISSN 0966-9582 (2011) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 Taylor & Francis

DOI: doi:10.1080/09669582.2011.571693


This paper explores the macro-governance of the growth of China's tourism industry into the world's largest domestic tourist industry and the fourth largest international destination. It explains distinctive aspects of the political and economic changes that have driven China's tourism over the last 30 years. These include a gradualist approach to transition/transformation, the re-birth of entrepreneurship and the market economy, structural change and the retention but evolution of governance by the Chinese Communist Party. It also explains the power of China's 4000-year-old cultural and philosophical heritage that plays a key role in contemporary tourism governance and planning, with a special emphasis on Confucian/Daoist thought, shan shui, feng shui and te-zhi, and the Chinese search for harmony and a middle way. The paper charts the emergence of the concept of sustainable development for the economy as a whole, and since 1995, for tourism development, despite significant tensions between China's drive for omodernizationo and oprogresso rather than sustainable development. Sustainable tourism development is shown to have had positive influences on transport, wildlife and natural heritage conservation and regional development. The concept of tourism as a okeystone industryo, analogous to ecology's concept of a okeystone specieso, is explored.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:transition/transformation; gradualism; market economy; harmony; keystone industry; sustainable tourism
Research Division:Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Research Group:Tourism
Research Field:Tourism not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Commercial Services and Tourism
Objective Group:Tourism services
Objective Field:Tourism services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Sofield, T (Professor Trevor Sofield)
UTAS Author:Li, S (Ms Sarah Li)
ID Code:78124
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:84
Deposited By:Management
Deposited On:2012-06-15
Last Modified:2017-08-25

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