Back To Schedule
Thursday, November 25 • 9:30am - 10:50am
Room C3 - Parallel Session Three: Tourism

Log in to save this to your schedule, view media, leave feedback and see who's attending!

Chair: Emma Stewart

9:30am - 9:50am
Ni Zhong

Long-term travel abroad is becoming more common for Chinese people. This type of travel has been seen as a journey of self where the outcome and benefit of travel are a result of learning. However, there is a disparity in how travelers perceive their learning. Little attention has been paid to learning that occurs in the long-term backpacking context and that attention had been limited to western tourists. In order to address the gap this paper investigates the meaning of learning for long-term Chinese backpackers. Fifty-five in-depth interviews in-person and online were conducted in 2020. The result shows that Chinese backpackers understand learning as learning about the world and self, experiencing life, and growth. They emphasized that learning in backpacking is different from learning in school, which is a process rather than a result. It is self-direct, interested based and also affected by the environment. The learning experience is essential in the travel experience. This paper can contribute to new insight into the nature of learning and backpacking and their relationship. It also further explains the meaning of learning about the self and world, which may provide implications for enhancing tourist learning.

9:50am - 10:10am 

Jia Geng, Kevin Moore and David Fisher

Recent years have witnessed a surge of interest among social scientists in preference (in)consistency in behavioural-decision theories. Tourists, in particular, are confronted with numerous options, especially in the current digital and global context, and their preferences in destination selection change over time. Destination selection is a negotiated process that involves two aspects of choice: desirability and feasibility. This makes the investigation of preference change, the overall choice process and the reasoning behind it of great interest. In
depth interviews of potential Chinese outbound travellers who ultimately decided to travel to New Zealand in the following twelve months were conducted to explore the process of how those tourists eventually decided upon New Zealand. Surprisingly, it was found that most tourists switched initial, more desirable destination alternatives to feasible alternatives (i.e., New Zealand). That is, they failed to choose the place they would like to go most. We considered reasons why they failed to do so. These findings challenge a fundamental assumption that people are able to make choices in their own best interests. In addition, the data also reveal Australia's role as a destination which, counterintuitively, has acted as a major driver for Chinese outbound tourists choosing New Zealand as a destination.

10:10am - 10:30am 

Denian Cheng, Joanna Fountain, Chris Rosin & Sharon Lucock

There is a call to focus on the nuanced social, political, and cultural process of authenticating tourist attractions. This research looks beyond authenticity perceptions and responds to Cohen's and Cohen's (2012) call for substantiation of their "cool" and "hot" authentication propositions by discussing politically and culturally informed authentication of traditional food tourism attractions. Specifically, this paper aims to examine the authentication process of conventional restaurants in Suzhou, China, from the perspective of owners and managers. It used semi-structured interviews and participant observation to collect research data, subsequently analysed to identify key themes. The analysis reveals that restaurant interviewees authenticated their food products and restaurant settings in two ways. The first authentication strategy is to apply for official certification of the establishment as a "Time-honoured Brand", emphasising that the restaurant is an "authentic" supplier based on a claim to heritage. The second strategy saw the construction of the "authentic" by stating the geographical setting of restaurants, traditional food, exterior and interior decorations, and host-guest interactions. This research also finds that the two authentication strategies seem to be borne from divergent motivations. While the emphasis on a strategy of official certification is economic benefits, their focus on complementary elements is primarily motivated by nostalgic returns.

10:30am - 10:50am 

Xiaozhen Ye, Joanna Fountain & Emma Stewart

This paper focuses on the relationship between tourism development and dance commodification from the perspective of ‘ecological migrants’ in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau of China. Deprived of their homeland and traditional way of life, ecological migrants have been resettled in the region since 2003, and this study has explored the role and characteristics of ethnic dance in this cultural relocation. Special attention has been given to the role of ‘authenticity’ in the eco-migrants’ experience. Based on 35 in-depth interviews with ecological migrants and other stakeholders, the research reveals that dance participants interpret authenticity through engagement in their performances, with this concept having many dimensions. These perceptions are shaped by the role of dance to their livelihood and to their level of empowerment or disempowerment, so that the ways of authenticating dance culture reflects the respondents’ (dis)empowered economic, social, psychological and political status. This paper will outline the relationship between authentication and empowerment status amongst ecological migrant dancers, and illustrate how power status impacts their interpretations of authenticity. The study also provides an insightful overview of the mechanism of (dis)empowerment within ethnic tourism of China, especially within a transitional and disempowered peripheral context.

avatar for Jia Geng

Jia Geng

PhD candidate, Lincoln University
I am a third-year PhD student at Lincoln University. The current research field is risk perception and decision making. I am interested in dynamic risk perception, decision-making patterns, and the impact of the online environment in decision making.

Thursday November 25, 2021 9:30am - 10:50am NZDT