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Title: The theory and practice of conceptual research in tourism
Author: Xin, Shuang
ISNI:       0000 0004 6350 0993
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2017
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There is currently much debate about how knowledge of tourism can and indeed should be produced. Tourism knowledge production is criticised to rely too much on Western values with limited research methods. Although tourism, as a field of study is considered as demonstrating a notable “critical turn” in recent years with the evidence of several books and journals published in response to this trend, the situation is not really as optimistic as it seems to be. This study seeks to redress this issue. The first part of the study-the theory of conceptual research in tourism- contributes to the “methodological turn”. It focused on conceptual research which is an existing research strategy but has been somewhat overlooked in the methodological studies especially in tourism field. The idea originated from the process of identifying the research type and a proper research method for the research question that makes the concept(s) as the research object. By reviewing the methodological literatures, the rationale and existing definitions of conceptual research were discussed and presented. A sample of 471 tourism journal articles was determined to examine the conceptual research in tourism. The quantitative content analysis revealed that conceptual research is somewhat overlooked in the tourism research academy. The qualitative content analysis developed a typology of twelve conceptual research approaches in conceptual research by analysing 46 pure conceptual research articles. Based on the discussions and analysis, conceptual research in tourism was defined and nine quality issues of conceptual research were illustrated. The second part of the study –the practice of conceptual research (the reinterpretation of sustainable tourism in the light of Confucianism and Taoism) - is the advocating of the “cultural turn” which lags behind the “methodological turn”. The twelve conceptual research approaches developed in the first part were applied to analyse the concepts of Confucianism, Taoism and sustainable tourism. The definitions, developments and clarifications of Confucianism, Taoism and sustainable tourism were presented. Eleven Confucian values, three Taoist values and seven existing sustainable tourism principles were abstracted. And then the Confucian and Taoist values were translated to sustainable tourism with the results of the sustainable tourism principles were reinterpreted and sustainable tourism was reconceptualised in the light of Confucianism and Taoism.
Supervisor: Tribe, John Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available