Palma, from 23 to 25 October 2013
Celebrating and Enhancing the Tourism
Knowledge-based Platform: A Tribute to Jafar Jafari

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General programme, activity sheet

Thursday 24 October, 2013 11:30 to 11:50 Oral Communication
A Logical Step to the Principle of Tourism Science
Speaker: Kaz (Kazuyoshi)  Takeuchi, Jissen Women's Junior College

Authors: Kazuyoshi Takeuchi

According to Goeldner and Ritchie (2012), the study of tourism phenomena is comprised of 21 different study fields, several of which are sociology, economics, psychology, and anthropology. Since these various fields have been widely shared as knowledge bases amongst tourism researchers, it has been a common reaction that the study of tourism phenomena cannot be established in a single discipline, due to the diversity and complications of tourism phenomena. Based on the analysis of Hirst (1993), Tribe (1997) asserts that the study of tourism phenomena does not provide any truth criteria which are particular to itself but rather utilises those criteria which are found in its contributory disciplines. As for a discipline of tourism science, there are two simple questions. The first question is whether or not the present study of tourism science can adequately explain the mechanism of tourism phenomena. As Tribe points out, it seems difficult to give a positive answer to this question to date. As for the second question, if the findings of tourism science cannot sufficiently explain the mechanism of tourism phenomena, would it be possible for 21 different study fields to do so? The answer to this second question must be logically a negative one. There must be an archive base that maintains the past findings of tourism phenomena. Without such a disciplinary base, tourism research would be able to provide only a fraction of its potential information resulting in a lack of a holistic comprehension. In this paper, the author proposes a fundamental theory to explain the mechanism of tourism phenomena through the logical thinking of theoretical physics. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the hypothetical system of tourist information that may lead to the principle of tourism science. In the tourist information system, each piece of information has its own energy field level, either positive or negative, which stimulates people to become active or inactive about traveling to tourist attractions. The receivers of tourist information create their own images of tourist attractions by decoding the messages from information providers, in accordance with the level of positive or negative energy fields. The process of tourist information starts at a genesis stage, in which the first person or group encounters a new phenomenon. It then follows the first stage where the direct information of the first person or group on the new phenomenon is delivered to the second person or group. In the second stage, the second person or group dispatches indirect information to other people. Thus, the interpretation of tourist attractions spreads out and brings about the movement of people towards tourist attractions. Just as the study of consumer behaviour highlights the moment that consumers purchase products, the tourist information system concentrates on the very moment when tourists visit tourist attractions. This theory explains an ambivalent situation whether a person should be defined as a tourist or not when he/she is doing basic physiological activities such as breathing and eating to maintain his/her life, which is not touristic, while visiting a tourist site. As it would be unimaginable to claim that physics cannot be established due to the diversity and complication of natural phenomena, the same line of thought must be applied to tourism science. The diversity and complication cannot be the reason to give up on the establishment of a disciplinary field but to provide it with the energy to pursue the continuous study of a target field. A well-established theory is merely an assumption and it must be always replaced with a better or more advanced one, no matter how widely it has been accepted in the pertinent field. Any idea or thought can be accepted as the main stream of a disciplinary field if it explains the target phenomenon well enough to become accepted.
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Submited paper (52 KB)

Session 1 - Ontologies, epistemologies and disciplinarity (1)
Place: Main Room

Other activities in Session 1 - Ontologies, epistemologies and disciplinarity (1)
11:50 h. to 12:10 h.Oral Communication

Lightness, Control and Dissolution: Challenging the Democratic Potential of Tourism Social Media

Speaker: Ana María Munar, Copenhagen Business School
Speaker: Richard Ek, Lund University - Campus Helsingborg
12:10 h. to 12:30 h.Oral Communication

Sustainability-oriented tourism research and (eco)cultural justice: What would a critical (eco)feminist approach look like?

Speaker: Blanca Camargo, Universidad de Monterrey
Speaker: Tazim  Jamal, Texas A&M University, USA