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In our journeys around the world over the past number of years, we have been continually amazed that cultural tourism and cultural heritage management (CHM) operate as parallel activities in most places, with remarkably little dialogue between the two. This fact remains even though CHM professionals and the tourism industry have mutual interests in the management, conservation, and presentation of cultural and heritage assets. Instead of working together to produce truly outstanding products, this historic isolation results in cultural tourism that is poorly provided for and executed.
The result is many lost opportunities to provide quality visitor experiences while managing rare and fragile resources in a socially, environmentally, and ethically responsible and sustainable manner. Sometimes, this loss results in some (and we stress some) unscrupulous tourism operators exploiting local cultures and heritage assets for their own personal gain, while providing little in return for the host or the continuing care of the assets. Likewise, some cultural heritage managers have a deep hatred of tourism and do whatever they can to thwart it. In these situations, tourists also lose, as visitor experiences are often well below their expectations. Finally, if the assets and host are no longer able to support a quality tourism experience and meet visitors' expectations, those visitors go elsewhere.
In most cases, though, the underperformance of many cultural tourism activities can be attributed to a lack of awareness and naivete about each sector. We have seen far too many cases in which wellmeaning cultural heritage managers have struggled with the roles of manager and promoter of cultural tourism attractions when they have assumed or have had those roles thrust upon them. On the other hand, we have seen far too many tour operators and tourism marketers show incredible cultural insensitivity about local cultural and heritage assets-again, mostly out of naivete. We have also witnessed far too many tourists acting in appropriate ways, again not out of malevolence, but largely because either they are responding to signals
given to them by the tourism industry about accepted behavior or they have not been informed about how to act otherwise.
We have written this book in an attempt to bridge the gap between cultural heritage management and tourism. The book has been conceived so that professionals and students from each field of study can read it and gain better understandings of the roles of their own discipline in cultural tourism management and of the needs, interests, and values that drive the other discipline. Most important, it outlines how tourism and cultural heritage management can work in partnership to
achieve mutual benefits.
In a very real sense, the book represents a marriage of tourism and cultural heritage management. The book adopts both tourism marketing and cultural heritage management perspectives and includes our observations of what actually happens at many cultural sites as well as theory. Bob McKercher has devoted much of his professional life to tourism, first in an operational role and more recently as an academic. Hilary du Cros has devoted most of her professional life to cultural heritage management, as the owner of one of Australia's leading consulting archaeology and heritage management firms and more recently as an academic. Together, over the past decade, we have also devoted much of our lives to understanding each others' unique perspectives in these fields. For each of us, this book represents both vocation and our avocation.
Cultural tourism is arguably the oldest of the "new" tourism phenomena. People have been traveling for what we now call cultural
tourism reasons since the days of the Romans; it is just that they were never recognized as being a discrete group of travelers before. Visiting historic sites, cultural landmarks, attending special events and festivals, or visiting museums have always been a part of the total tourism experience. Indeed, all travel involves a cultural element. By its very nature, the art of traveling removes tourists from their home culture and places them temporarily in a different cultural milieu, whether in an adjacent city or in a village halfway around the world. But cultural tourism is seen as offering something more or different both to the tourist and the community that hosts the tourist.
Cultural tourism began to be recognized as a distinct product category in the late 1970s when tourism marketers and tourism researchers realized that some people traveled specifically to gain a deeper understanding of the culture or heritage of a destination (Tighe 1986). Initially, it was regarded as a specialized, niche activity that was thought to be pursued by a small number of better educated, more affluent tourists who were looking for something other than the standard sand, sun, and sea holiday. It is only since the fragmentation of the mass market in the 1990s that cultural tourism has been recognized for what it is: a high-profile, mass-market activity. Depending on the source and the destination, between 35 and 70 percent of international
travelers are now considered cultural tourists (Richards 1996c; Antolovic 1999). Based on these figures, as many as 240 million
international journeys annually involve some element of cultural tourism. Today, arguably, cultural tourism has superseded ecotourism as the trendy tourism buzzword. It is not surprising, then, that destinations are clamoring to get on the proverbial cultural tourism band- wagon by promoting their cultural or heritage assets for tourist consumption, often without due consideration of the impact that tourism may have on them.
Cultural tourism did not go unnoticed by the cultural heritage management sector either. In fact, the growth of cultural tourism coincided with the emergence of a broader societywide appreciation of the need to protect and conserve our dwindling cultural and heritage assets. However, cultural tourism was seen as a double-edged sword by the cultural heritage management community. On the one hand, increased demand by tourists provided a powerful political and economic justification to expand conservation activities. On the other hand, increased visitation, overuse, inappropriate use, and the commodification of the same assets without regard for their cultural values posed a real threat to the integrity-and in extreme cases, to the very survival-of these assets. At about the same time, then, cultural heritage management advocates began to promulgate policies to protect
cultural values from inappropriate tourism uses (International Council on Monuments and Sites [ICOMOS] 1976).
Thus began the parallel yet largely independent evolution of cultural tourism as both a product and cultural heritage management issue. To a large extent, both sectors still operate in parallel, with little real evidence being shown of true partnerships forming between them. But cultural tourism can, could, and should achieve both cultural heritage management (learning about conservation of cultural heritage assets) and tourism management (market appeal, commercial viability of products) objectives. In theory, this aim is supported widely by both sectors. In practice, though, the achievement of this dual objective has proven elusive, as the pursuit of one objective has often been regarded as being inimical with the attainment of the other (Berry 1994; Boniface 1998; Jacobs and Gale 1994; Jansen-Verbeke 1998). Instead, in many instances one element has been sacrificed or
traded off. Tourism values are compromised to ensure that the cultural integrity of assets is maintained or that cultural values are not compromised for tourism gain. The resulting cultural tourism sector operates at a suboptimal level, failing to achieve either its tourism or cultural heritage management potential fully.
Sustainability can occur only when the practice of trading off oneset of values for another ceases and, instead, tourism and cultural heritagemanagement interests work toward the achievement of common goals. This task is complicated by the historic lack of understandingof the role each plays and is reflected in the sentiment that both sectors work toward different and mutually incompatible goals.Other than sharing the same assets, they often feel they have little else in common. Each sector has a different disciplinary focus and mandate, serves a different role in society, has different political overlords, and is accountable to different stakeholder groups. The end product is ignorance, often leading to suspicion of the other's motives. This book seeks to dispel some of that ignorance and foster greater understanding of the mutual interests that tourism and cultural heritage management have in cultural tourism.
DEFINING CULTURAL TOURISM
What is cultural tourism? This seemingly simple question is actually very difficult to answer because there are almost as many definitions or variations of definitions of cultural tourism as there are cultural tourists. The American chapter of ICOMOS, the International Council on Monuments and Sites, observed that "cultural tourism as a name means many things to many people and herein lies its strength and its weakness" (USICOMOS 1996: 17). A number of definitions of cultural tourism were reviewed when preparing this text that support this assertion. They fell into four broad categories: tourism derived,
motivational, experiential, and operational.
Perhaps this diversity is to be expected given the emerging nature of the sector and the diversity of products and/or experiences that constitute cultural tourism. Moreover, people will shape their definition of an amorphous concept to suit their own needs. Some of the definitions are comprehensive while others are clearly narrow and self-serving. Politically oriented definitions of cultural tourism tend to be as inclusive as possible to show the level of consumer interest and thus provide further justification for investment in cultural heritage management activities. Likewise, the undercurrent of many marketing-oriented definitions is to strive for greater allocation of marketing resources to the sector. On the other hand, definitions that tend to focus on one or a narrow set of activities seek to position those activities as the core elements of cultural tourism and, by extension, position others as being peripheral to true cultural tourism.
Tourism definitions place cultural tourism within a broader framework of tourism and tourism management theory. Cultural tourism, for example, is recognized as a form of special interest tourism, where culture forms the basis of either attracting tourists or motivating people to travel (McIntosh and Goeldner 1990; Zeppel 1992; Ap 1999). Others place it in a tourism systems context, recognizing that it involves interrelationships between people, places, and cultural heritage (Zeppel and Hall, 1991), or define it in the context of the temporary movement of people (Richards 1996c). Cultural tourism has also been conceptualized from a business perspective as involving the development and marketing of various sites or attractions for foreign as well as domestic tourists (Goodrich 1997).
A number of authors and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) feel that cultural tourists are motivated to travel for different reasons than other tourists and, therefore, feel that motivation must be considered an important element when defining cultural tourism (Richards 1996b). The World Tourism Organization (WTO) defines cultural tourism as "movements of persons essentially for cultural motivations such as study tours, performing arts and cultural tours, travel to festivals and other events, visit to sites and monuments, travel to study nature, folklore or art, and pilgrimages" (WTO 1985:6). Likewise, the province of Ontario in Canada uses the definition of "visits by persons from outside the host community motivated wholly or in part by interest in the historical, artistic, scientific, or lifestyle/heritage offerings of the community, region, group, or institution" (Silberberg 1995: 361).
Experiential or Aspirational Definitions
Motivation alone, though, does not seem to encapsulate the full magnitude of cultural tourism. Cultural tourism is also an experiential activity, with many people feeling it also includes an aspirational element. As a minimum, cultural tourism involves experiencing or having contact of differing intensity with the unique social fabric, heritage, and special character of places (TC 1991; Blackwell 1997; Schweitzer 1999). It is also hoped that by experiencing culture the tourist will become educated as well as entertained (VICNET 1996), will have a chance to learn about the community (IDCCA 1997), or will have an opportunity to learn something about the significance of a place and its associations with the local community, its heritage, and a cultural or natural landscape (AHC and TCA 1999). Some people even liken cultural tourism to a quest or search for greater understanding (Bachleitner and Zins 1999; Hannabus 1999). These people suggest that by leading the observer into the cultural past, cultural tourism can help them see the present from a different viewpoint.
An operational definition is the most common definitional approach used. Most of the tourism derived, motivational, and experiential definitions also include an operational component, often to illustrate the point being made. Cultural tourism is defined by participation in any one of an almost limitless array of activities or experiences. Indeed, it is common to avoid defining cultural tourism, instead stating that "cultural tourism includes visits to . . . " By inference, if someone visits one of these attractions, that person must be a cultural tourist; thus the activity must be a cultural tourism activity. Motivation, purpose, or depth of experience count less than participation.
The tourism literature identifies the range of cultural tourism activities as including the use of such cultural heritage assets as archaeological sites, museums, castles, palaces, historical buildings, famous buildings, ruins, art, sculpture, crafts, galleries, festivals, events, music and dance, folk arts, theatre, "primitive cultures [sic]," subcultures, ethnic communities, churches, cathedrals and other things that represents people and their cultures (Richards 1996a; Goodrich 1997; Miller 1997; Jamieson 1994). Likewise, the array of cultural tourism products can include existing structures, modified facilities, and purpose-built attractions. The scale can vary from one building, to a cluster of buildings, a streetscape, a precinct within a community, an entire city or town, a region, or arguably to entire countries.
The operational definition highlights the potential scope of this activity, while at the same time illustrating the very real problems that exist in setting meaningful parameters about what is and what is not cultural tourism. By its very nature, cultural tourism has fuzzy boundaries, for it is almost impossible to ascribe absolute parameters either to the resources used or to the tourist using them. In fact, cultural tourism has become an umbrella term for a wide range of related activities, including historical tourism, ethnic tourism, arts tourism, museum tourism, and others. They all share common sets of resources, management issues, and desired aspirational outcomes.
CONCEPTUALIZING CULTURAL TOURISM-
A THEMATIC APPROACH
The definitions examined are not without their weaknesses, not because they are poor definitions, but because it is almost impossible to capture the full essence of cultural tourism in one or two sentences. Rather than adding to the growing list of incomplete definitions, we wish instead to place cultural tourism within the context of a number of common themes apparent in these and other definitions that shape our understanding of this phenomenon. The book will focus on an examination of the interrelationships between these themes.
Cultural tourism involves four elements:
2. Use of cultural heritage assets
3. Consumption of experiences and products
4. The tourist
To state that cultural tourism is a form of tourism may seem selfevident and rather tautological. But, as discussed in Chapter 3, it is important to appreciate that "tourism" is a noun and "cultural" is an adjective used to modify it. Above all else, cultural tourism is a form of tourism. It is not a form of cultural heritage management. As a form of tourism, the decision to embark on cultural tourism must be based on sound, commercial tourism reasons first and cultural heritage management reasons second. This point is sometimes not appreciated by some members of the cultural heritage management community who may see tourism as a means of achieving other agendas or who fail to appreciate just what is needed to make an asset work as a tourism attraction. As a tourism activity, it will attract nonlocal visitors (or tourists) who are traveling primarily for pleasure on limited time budgets and who may know little about the significance of the assets being visited. Successful cultural tourism products must be shaped with this type of visitor in mind.
The Use of Cultural Heritage Assets
Having stated the above, however, cultural tourism's principal building blocks are a community or a nation's cultural heritage assets. The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), defines heritage as a broad concept that includes tangible assets, such as natural and cultural environments, encompassing landscapes, historic places, sites, and built environments, as well as intangible assets, such as collections, past and continuing cultural practices, knowledge, and living experiences (ICOMOS 1999). These assets are identified and conserved for their intrinsic values or significance to a community rather than for their extrinsic values as tourism attractions. In fact, the tourism potential of assets is rarely considered when they are first identified. At this time, most documentation of an asset's significance concentrates on its aesthetic, architectural, istorical, social, spiritual, or educational values, with tourism sitting hazily within the educational or social values sections.
One of the paradoxes of cultural tourism is that although the decision to enter this sector must be driven by tourism considerations, assets are managed by the principles of cultural heritage management. In addition, cultural or heritage assets may serve a multitude of user groups, including tourists, but also including local schoolchildren, "traditional owners" (indigeonous or ethnic community groups that own the intellectual cultural property or land righs associated with a cultural asset), and other local residents. These groups may value the asset for different reasons and seek different benefits from its use, making the task of presenting the asset appropriately more difficult. These competing approaches can be a source of friction between tourism and cultural heritage management interests. Chapters 4 through 6 introduce the key principles of cultural heritage management and
how they are applied to tangible and intangible assets.
Consumption of Experiences and Products
All tourism involves the consumption of experiences and products (Urry 1990; Richards 1996c), and cultural tourism is no different. Cultural tourists want to consume a variety of cultural experiences. To facilitate this consumption, cultural heritage assets must be transformed into cultural tourism products. The transformation process actualizes the potential of the asset by converting it into something that the tourist can utilize. This transformation process, though abhorrent to some, is integral to the successful development and sustainable management of the cultural tourism product. This issue is discussed in more detail in Chapters 7 and 8.
Throughout the book, a distinction is made between a cultural or heritage asset and a cultural tourism product. A cultural or heritage asset represents the uncommodified or raw asset that is identified for its intrinsic values.Acultural tourism product, on the other hand, represents an asset that has been transformed or commodified specifically for tourism consumption (see Photo 1.1).
Finally, cultural tourism must consider the tourist.Anumber of the definitions suggest or imply strongly that all cultural tourists are motivated to travel for deep learning, experiential, or self-exploration reasons. Others recognize that the motivations for cultural tourism participation fall along a continuum, from those who travel exclusively or primarily for cultural tourism reasons to those for whom cultural tourism participation is an accidental element of the trip. Chapter 9 identifies five different types of cultural tourists who exhibit markedly different behaviors. The typology is based on the importance of cultural tourism in the decision to visit a destination and the depth of the experience for the tourist.
In addition, the type, quality, and veracity of information tourists consume prior to arrival will shape their expectations of the asset and their expected behavior while visiting. Ideally, the asset managers can communicate directly to the tourist and accurately impart the desired information in a desirable manner. In reality, as discussed in Chapter 10, many information gatekeepers have more direct access to the consumer prior to the visit and, therefore, may play a more important role in shaping expectations of the experience than the asset itself.
THE KEY ISSUE:
LINKING CULTURAL HERITAGE MANAGEMENT
AND TOURISM MANAGEMENT
The challenge facing the cultural tourism sector is to find a balance between tourism and cultural heritage management-between the consumption of extrinsic values by tourists and conservation of the intrinsic values by cultural heritage managers. This challenge was noted first by the cultural heritage community as long as twenty-five years ago (ICOMOS 1978) and is only recently being recognized as an important issue by the tourism community. The advent of tourism as an interested and legitimate user group has made the heritage resource management process even more demanding. At times, conflicts have emerged between the two sectors as they vie to use the same resource base (Bowes 1994; Jamieson 1994).
Greater urgency than ever exists as demand increases and as pressure is being placed on many assets to perform in a more businesslike manner in order to secure funding (Sugaya 1999). The main stumbling blocks seem to be the continued operations of tourism and cultural heritage management in parallel rather than in partnership, combined with ignorance of the other's needs and suspicion of the other's motives. Integration and partnerships can be achieved only if each side develops a stronger understanding of how the other views the assets, values them, and seeks to use them.
The conservation sector seems to appreciate that use, be it by local residents or tourists, is an important element in creating public awareness of and support for conservation of tangible and intangible assets that will translate into greater political and finding support for further conservation activities (Sugaya 1999). Many others in the conservation sector-sometimes begrudgingly, sometimes with open arms-accept that a partnership between heritage management and tourism is both necessary and beneficial. As a general rule, the tourism industry, historically, has been much slower to recognize the need for partnership.
Chapters 11 through 14 present a number of management approaches that both tourism and cultural heritage can use to identify
a mutually agreeable set of goals and to manage assets to achieve those goals.
"COMPREHENSIVE AND THOUGHTFUL. . . . Offers a global, detailed exposition of varied issues in a LUCID, WELL-ORGANIZED, AND BALANCED FASHION. Recommended for upper-division undergraduate and graduate students and government and private sector policy makers. The authors offer a global, detailed exposition of various issues in a lucid, well-organized, and balanced fashion. They have performed a great service to both the professional and the student with the publication of this perceptive volume."
"EXTREMELY INFORMATIVE, CLEARLY WRITTEN. . . . Will be a key resource for both undergraduate and postgraduate students engaging in a range of tourism-related studies. TIMELY AND COMPREHENSIVE. . . . Brings together diverse concepts, perspectives, and practicalities that must be understood by both cultural heritage and tourism managers. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS TEXT TO STUDENTS of sociology, cultural studies, human geography, and urban/regional planning, as well as tourism practitioners. I consider this book COMPULSORY READING FOR ANYONE WHO TEACHES TOURISM."
--Journal of Sustainable Tourism
"IDEAL FOR STUDENTS PURSUING COURSES IN TOURISM AND /OR CULTURAL HERITAGE MANAGEMENT"
--International Journal of Tourism Research
"THOUGHTFULLY EXAMINES CULTURAL TOURISM from the perspectives of cultural heritage management and tourism. . . . A readable introduction to the subject SUITABLE FOR ADVANCED TERTIARY STUDENTS and those in cultural heritage management or tourism who want to bridge the gap between these two fields. The book examines an area of growing importance and is based on sound academic knowledge and practical experience."
--Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Management
"COMPREHENSIVE . . . introduces the reader to a significant number of the essential dimensions of cultural tourism. AN EXCELLENT TEXT. I found the discussion of cultural heritage management and tangible and intangible heritage to be especially useful. The chapters on marketing, marketing mix, and the presentation and management of heritage assets are of particular interest."
--Walter Jamieson, PhD, Professor of Urban Environmental Management, Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand
"Brings together concepts, perspectives, and practicalities that must be understood by both cultural heritage and tourism managers . . . A MUST-READ for both. . . . Presents a model for evaluating how to integrate tourism with cultural heritage management that is EXTREMELY USEFUL."
--Hisashi B. Sugaya, AICP, Former Chair, International Council of Monuments and Sites, International Scientific Committee on Cultural Tourism; Former Executive Director, Pacific Asia Travel Association Foundation, San Francisco, California
The Haworth Press Inc., Web Site, December, 2003
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