Tourism Development, Planning and Impact Analyses

Bournemouth University’s International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research is home to some of the world’s leading experts in tourism impact modelling and combines a wealth of experience in transferring such evidence into relevant policy advice for tourism development and planning.

The ICTHR team has extensive global experience of conducting tourism impact analyses over the past three decades. It has pioneered the methods used to estimate tourism impacts and is at the forefront of driving new ideas and techniques across the industry and academia. Members of the team have published many related articles in leading tourism journals.

The Impact of Tourism – Environmental, Economic and Social

The impact that tourism has on a destination is often viewed in terms of its impact on the economy, the environment and society. The International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research’s approach to impact analyses is to provide robust estimates using the most rigorous data evaluation and modelling techniques available. Our team has undertaken more tourism economic impact studies than any other organisation and the countries in which we have undertaken these studies are located in every continent.

Previous studies have been as diverse as small economies conducted in destinations such as Fiji, Gibraltar, Jamaica, Mauritius and the Seychelles, to larger countries, such as Hungary, Romania, Ireland, the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia. We back up our development strategies with ongoing support and, where required, training courses that enable local staff to use these models into the future.

Pioneers in Impact Modelling

The ICTHR team has developed bespoke interactive models that clearly demonstrate the amount of income,        employment, government revenue and import requirements associated with tourist spending. These impact     models show the current impacts of tourism on income and employment for an economy as a whole, future labour needs by skill categories, the effects on each sector of the economy and identify where bottlenecks may occur and determine the most favourable markets for future tourism development. These models are unique and have been constructed for many countries around the world.

The Scottish Tourism Multiplier Study, which was undertaken during the early 1990s, became the benchmark study. The results of that study have been used to assess the impacts of tourism throughout the UK into the 21st century. The impact model constructed for Mauritius was ground-breaking and included economic and environmental impact assessment within a common analytical framework. Current research includes the development of a sustainable economic and environmental impacts model designed to engage all stakeholders in the development of tourism in their destination.

The Centre’s work has led the introduction of general equilibrium models to tourism impact analysis. These models build on earlier work by allowing more economic interactions to be included when modelling impacts, such as the influence that tourism spending has on prices and wages and the further effects that this has on a destination.       These models also allow more policy related questions to be addressed, such as the impacts of tourism policy (taxes, training subsidies or investments that improve productivity) or the effects of other policies and external events on tourism.

Recent examples include projects for the governments of the United Kingdom, Scotland, Brazil, Malta and Cyprus. This has included research that looked at the ways in which tourism affects poverty in Brazil, the effects that Malta and Cyprus’ accession to the EU has had on tourism in those countries, and the effects of different tourism taxes and productivity improvements in the UK.