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Analysis of uk government tourism policy

Analysis of uk government tourism policy



Presentation on an analysis of the UK Government's tourism policy given at the 6th International Conference on Tourism at the University of the Aegean, Rhodes, Greece - 28th May - 1st June 2013

Presentation on an analysis of the UK Government's tourism policy given at the 6th International Conference on Tourism at the University of the Aegean, Rhodes, Greece - 28th May - 1st June 2013



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  • In the first quarter of 2009, Global tourism arrivals dropped by 8%. European arrivals were down 10%.In 2009 in UK, a drop in domestic tourism receipts of £184 million were partially offset by the rise in inbound tourism receipts of £142 million.In 2012, inbound tourist numbers grew by 1% and spending grew by 4% - though interestingly, this growth occurred at the beginning and end of the year, and during the summer months when the Olympics and Paralympics were staged numbers remained the same as the previous year.
  • The aim of this marketing campaign was to harness the success of London 2012. £100m campaign, co-funded by the government and the private sector. Aim to attract 4 million extra visitors to Britain over the next 4 years.For longer stays, 4 nights or more, this would mean 29% of travellers holidaying in Britain rather than just 20% today
  • The 2011 policy does not radically diverge from the policies of previous UK administrations, instead it builds incrementally on the previous aims.Often prescriptive – government still sees itself as having a role to play in the future development of the industryNo indication of development process – no explanation of the decision-making process, not clear how these ideas were arrivedNo associated set of action plans or easily identifiable and measurable targets – e.g. ‘Broaden our tourism offer by creating alternative destinations which match London’
  • Continued government intervention:‘…because of the sector’s high proportion of SMEs, and free-ridgin by firms which benefit from shared marketing campaigns which they haven’t participated in, there’s a high level of market failure which stops it happening. As a result, the public sector has had to step in, which has left the industry – unusually for its size and importance – particularly dependent on public funds’Reduced government intervention:‘…reduce the sector’s dependence on taxpayer funding, increase the amount of money available for collective destination marketing, and create a sustainable new model of destination marketing and management’The policy seems to put forward a contradictory position. If Government’s intervention and reforms can eradicate market failure, then tourism will need no greater level of support than other industries receive. But, if market failure persists, then current levels of corrective state funding are unsustainable. In this scenario, market failure, accompanied by unsustainable state support, could lead to an industry that lacks regualtion and direction.
  • Visit Britain is the National Tourism Organisation for UK, with three devolved NTOs for Scotland, Wales and Northern IrelandVisit Britain – History of engagement with private sector, but has principally been public sector-led body, operating at arm’s length from government, with the responsibility for distributing fund.50% co-funder with British Airways, Easyjet, Hilton Hotels, P&O ferries.No increase to total funding to Visit Britain. As part of the austerity programme, total core funding was cut from £73.9 million in 2011-12 to £43.6 million in 2014-15, a drop of 58%. This is not offset by the new partnership fund as this has been ring-fenced for promotional campaigns and not for other Visit Britain functions.
  • Localism agenda – ideological and political commitment to reduce state structure and encourage stronger local control.Natural geogr

Analysis of uk government tourism policy Analysis of uk government tourism policy Presentation Transcript

  • +Analysis of UKGovernment’s 2011Tourism PolicyDr. Samantha Chaperon & James KennellUniversity of Greenwich, London
  • +Political context UK coalition governmentformed in May 2010 Tourism was one of thefirst main policystatements UK government viewedtourism as a potentialgrowth sector
  • +Economic context Aim of reducing publicspending by approx. 13%on 2010 levels (Taylor-Gooby, 2012) By the end of 2011,international arrivals to theUK had risen by 3.3% andspending by these touristshad risen by 6.5% (ONS,2012) Domestic touristtrips in the UK also rose byapprox. 9.3% (TourismAlliance, 2012) Coalition governmentelected in the wake ofeconomic crisis Structural reforms andausterity programme Tourism viewed as one ofthe ‘winners’ in the UKeconomy Ability to capitalise on weaknational currency Provide domestic tourismopportunities
  • +Key aims of UK Tourism Policy1. Develop an innovative newpartnership marketing campaign2. Increase the proportion of UKresidents who holiday in the UK tomatch those who holiday abroadeach year3. Improve the sector’s productivity tobecome one of the top 5 mostefficient and competitive visitoreconomies in the world(DCMS, 2011)
  • +UK Tourism Policy Approach Reflects the Government’s neoliberal policy agenda Focus is no longer on London 2012, but identifies many similarareas for growth and barriers to growth e.g. regulation, balance of trade, need for skills development, poorindustry coordination, inadequate signage Often prescriptive
  • +Changing governance structures forUK tourism industryState• IndustryPublic• PrivateRegional• Local
  • +Relationship between the state andindustry Continued government interventionjustified through problems of marketfailure and free-riding Reduced government intervention -private sector now taking the leadwith public sector funding fortourism development and marketingsuffering large cuts.Contradiction?
  • +Relationship between the public andprivate sectors Visit Britain’s new role is to be 50% co-funder of a partnershipmarketing campaign with a value of £100 million To attract 4 million additional overseas visitors in four yearsafter London 2012 To gain £2 billion in extra visitor spend To create 50,000 new jobs Issue: After 12 months, £10 million has been raised by privatesector (some in-kind) and £25 million by public sector
  • +Relationship between regional andlocal levels DMOs are restructured to fit ‘natural geography of a tourist area’(DCMS, 2011:forward), similar to new LEPs ‘natural economicgeographies’ (BIS, 2010) In line with new localism agenda Issue: No definition of tourism geographies Issue: Problems of private sector buy-in for DMOs (Cole et al2012)
  • +Conclusions Swings from highly ambitous to very mundane Radical proposals on governance Micro-management of signage and hotel rating schemes No indications of development process or mechanisms formeasuring success and evaluation New institutional arrangements lack clarity and stakeholdersappear disengaged Tourism can provide growth, but is unclear wit this policy willhelp or hinder it