Tourism destination development: socio-material relations and practices

By An Pongajarn
Informed by actor-network theory, this research aims at improving understanding of the nature of tourism destinations and their development by investigating the processes of material and conceptual ordering in tourism destinations in Thailand.From an actor-network theory perspective, tourism destinations can be viewed as heterogeneous networks being enacted in multiple ways. This research analyses the enactment of tourism destinations and provide insight in the emergence and consequence of the multiple realities in tourism destinations. It also includes the role of individuals, technologies and materials into this analysis.

The result of this research is not determined by the wish to find the best solution or pattern of the tourism destination development. It rather aims to show the performativity of human and non-human actors that creates the dynamic of tourism development, and how the different versions of destinations can be enacted in tourism destinations through the interest alignment process of these actors. By doing so, it will provide an understanding of the complex relations and entities which construct and enable tourism destinations, their objects, cultures and identities, not only theoretically, but also empirically through the daily practices of managing and promoting tourism destinations.

prof. Rene van der Duim
dr. Karin Peters