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Use of the Multi-Agent Paradigm in Sustainable Tourism

Abstract

Complex systems are characterised by a huge amount of components, which are highly linked with each other. Tourism is one of the examples of complex systems collecting various activities leading to the enrichment of travellers in the view of receiving new experiences and increasing economic prosperity of specific destinations. The complex systems can be investigated with various bottom-up and top-down approaches. The multi-agent-based modelling is the bottom-up approach that is focused on the representation of individual entities for the exploration of possible interactions among them and their effects on surrounding environments. These systems are able to integrate knowledge of socio-cultural, economic, physical, biological or environmental systems for in-silico models development, which can be used for experimentation with a system. The main aim of the presented text is to introduce links between tourism, complexity and to advocate usefulness of the multi-agent-based systems for the exploration of tourism and its sustainability. The evaluation of suitability of the multi-agent systems in tourism is based on the investigation of fundamental characteristics of these two systems and on the review of specific applications of the multi-agent systems in sustainable tourism.

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Spa and Wellness Tourism in Slovakia (A Geographical Analysis)

Abstract

Spa industry is presently an inherent part of Slovak tourism. For this reason, it has become a major interest of scientific and professional literature (economics, management, sociology, or geography). The main topic of this paper is the evaluation of tourism in Slovakia through a geographic analysis. This paper briefly evaluates the development and the importance of spa, spa tourism and wellness and their main research areas and issues. Furthermore, the primary sources of tourism development, the overview of spa tourism and the wellness resorts, the accommodation establishments and the visitation rate are evaluated as well. In conclusion, functional and spatial typification of spa tourism and wellness in Slovakia is presented. The structure of the paper is designed to be appropriate for a comparison with V4 countries.

Open access
Spa, Spa Tourism and Wellness Tourism in the Czech Republic

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to compare and assess the position of the spa and wellness sector in the structure of tourism in the Czech Republic. In this context, the article deals with the brief history of the Czech spa tourism and the development of spa tourism in the spa resorts, including the focus of specialized literature review. The methodological part consists of an explanation of the existing statistical information about the spa sector. The main part of the paper deals with the geographic analysis of current spa centres (the capacity of spa and total collective accommodation facilities, the number of spa patients and guests, guest attendance and their geographical structure). The assessment also includes the determination of the importance of the spa for overall spa tourism. Furthermore, the paper also deals with the development and localization of the selected forms of wellness tourism. As a pilot example, aquaparks built especially in the last 20 years in the Czech Republic were chosen.

Open access
Geotourism Destinations – Visitor Impacts and Site Management Considerations

Abstract

Geotourism is becoming a well established form of tourism based on the geological environment. It offers a new form of sustainable tourism which is more holistic then previous niche forms of tourism. However, with more people than ever visiting natural areas worldwide, the cumulative impacts of visitors on geological sites is increasing. This paper surveys visitor impacts and site management at geological sites which are geotourism destinations. We describe geotourism which is the engine driving the core activities of conservation, education and sustainable development in geoparks. We then outline some lessons learned from management in dealing with visitor impacts at a heavily visited geopark in Taiwan, a volcano in Indonesia, and a coastal World Heritage site in England. The importance of education is emphasized for geo-climbing in Spain and all-terrain vehicles in Poland. A number of site management approaches are noted, including the importance of guiding as a management strategy as well as the value of a positive involvement by the local community. Finally, some examples are given of the risks associated with tourism activities in volcanic areas as well as related appropriate management activities.

Open access
Airbnb and the Hotel Industry in Warsaw: An Example of the Sharing Economy?

Abstract

The aim of this analysis is to examine the characteristics of the Airbnb network, to verify the share of Airbnb offers that belong to the sharing economy and to identify the differences between the spatial distribution of the Airbnb network and the traditional hotel industry. The article is based on a unique dataset of web-scraped data on Airbnb listings in Warsaw (Poland), combined with district-level official statistics on the hotel industry. The analysis shows that only approximately 11% of offers belong to the sharing economy (“individuals granting each other temporary access to their under-utilised assets”), while at least one third of offers are provided by professional firms. The Airbnb network shows a strong centre-periphery pattern, with 75% of offers located within a range of 4.3 kilometres from the centre. The spatial concentration of Airbnb offers is strongly driven by their distance from metro lines, while it is weakly related to the amount of living space. On the district-level, the spatial distribution of Airbnb listings is correlated with that of the hotel industry, although Airbnb contributes to a more even spread of tourism in the city. The major contribution of this analysis is its presentation of the size and characteristics of the platform, which is essential for data-driven policy making.

Open access
New Trends in Geoproducts Development: Železné Hory National Geopark Case Study

Abstract

Geotourism is still a relatively new direction of tourism and its development is bound mainly to the territory of geoparks. Many geoparks try to develop different types of geo-products with a focus on different target groups. However, the nature of these products is very different and their development is evident mainly in the time scale. In the past, simple forms of interpretation and application of geoproducts were popular, whereas currently, modern technologies such as animations or augmented reality are thriving. This is mainly due to the better availability of technological equipment. At the same time, a number of geoparks boast of above-average interpreters, who are able to render and simplify difficult geological topics. This also applies to their ability to create of new geoproducts, where the need to abbreviate and condense information is evident. The results of the study show a positive trend in the use of modern methods in geoscience interpretation and in the creation of new geoproducts. At the same time, it is clear that without a modern concept it is very difficult to reach the current visitors. Therefore, such a concept is necessary in order to develop geoscientific issues, especially in the area of geoparks.

Open access
Ecotourism revisited: Last twenty-five years

Abstract

The concept of ecotourism evolves differently in developing and developed nations due to which the basic principles of ecotourism are in question. The existing literature on ecotourism suggests ambiguity in conceptual understanding of ecotourism. Due to this qualm, ecotourism is evolving into various forms. Different stakeholders with varying objectives related to ecotourism make it further difficult to form the consensus on what constitutes ecotourism. Without the clear understanding of ecotourism, it is difficult to evolve ethics on which the ecotourism principles are based. The focus of this research is to find out the principle components or themes of ecotourism using a content analysis for the development of ecotourism policy and applications. This study identified six key components of ecotourism which are widely accepted by researchers and could be used to shape the fundamental understanding of ecotourism. These themes are: (1) Nature oriented travel; (2) Support of conservation; (3) Learning and appreciation; (4) Socio-economic development of local area; (5) Support and respect for local culture and (6) Local people (area) participation.

Open access
Multiculturality and Interculturality in Tourism

Abstract

There is a turmoil in Europe and the world as far as the terms multiculturality and interculturality are concerned and have been concerned in recent years. The overwhelming historical, political, cultural and economic changes that have shaken the whole world have brought about significant changes in otherwise relatively traditional societies and communities, as well, with a very important impact on people's lives not only in point of economy, but communication, attitude towards labour, personality traits, national security and others. All interpersonal relations have been tinted by the reaction towards some „buzz words” that are very popular nowadays; nevertheless, they are at the core of a tremendously huge process of changes in the mere life of European societies and communities.

In this environment, all economic activities that involve huge movements of individuals and masses (like tourism and hospitality) have experienced huge transformations; and if the ability and skill of making international communication mingle with the feeling of security encountered in a certain environment- these would definitely lead to a potential and real growth in that economic sector, including the third one of services.

We truly believe tourism is one of those, and good international relations, as well as strategic partnerships, contribute to its development.

In order to achieve results in tourism you only have to provide the following: secure environment, a competitive product, and good value for price services. It also helps if you have skilled employees, though.

Open access
How Festival Experience Quality Influence Visitor Satisfaction? A Quantitative Approach

Abstract

The purpose of research presented in this paper is to determine how selected characteristics of a city event affect the satisfaction of visitors. In particular, the aim is to identify factors related to event atmospherics that determine visitor satisfaction in the city destination in continental part of Croatia. For this purpose, questionnaire was created based on previously conducted research by Bitner (1992), Oliver (1980, 1997), Baker and Crompton (2000), and Lee, Lee, Lee, and Babin (2008). It comprised measures for assessing event atmospherics, visitor satisfaction, and demographic characteristics of the respondents. The research was conducted among visitors of a city event that takes place every year during December 2018. A total of 191 questionnaires were obtained during the one-month period. Principal component analysis was utilised to determine the factor structure of city event atmospherics. In addition, multiple regression analysis was conducted to determine which factors may serve as predictors of visitor satisfaction in city event context. As a result, the analyses revealed four factors related to city event atmospherics. In addition, these factors positively and significantly affected visitor satisfaction, indicating that they have important role in determining visitor satisfaction in a city event context. These findings can contribute to the knowledge advancement of the city events, their influence on tourist satisfaction, and consequently, to better understand specific groups of visitors as well as establish efficient marketing and promotion strategies.

Open access
Landscape Perception of the Bohemian Paradise

Abstract

Comprehensive understanding of the destination perception by its visitors represents one of the key prerequisites of professional destination management on its both strategic and tactical level. This study continues in previous research focused on the analysis of the perception of different landscape types of the Czech Republic, zooming this time on the perception of the landscape of the Bohemian Paradise destination. The emphasis is put on the understanding of manifestations of genius loci and the exogenous factors in the landscape perception. The participant ´s observation of visitors’ behaviour, evaluation of their spontaneous discussions and comments, structured interviews and introspection supplemented by recordings of exogenous factors represented methods used to get an insight into the perception of landscape and genius loci manifestation in the selected research localities. The qualitative research strategy in the form of pilot research led to the confirmation of suitability of applied methods and to the formulation of the preliminary hypotheses of the future quantitative research. The findings of this pilot research indicate the correctness of the assumption of the exogenous factors (weather, daytimes and seasons of the year) influence on the landscape perception as well as the manifestation of the genius loci perceived by the majority of visitors.

Open access