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Abstract

Tourism activity is uneven over space. Its impacts and consequences, positive and negative, are, to a large degree. local. Examples might include employment and incomes or, more negatively, the over use of local ecological and other resources. Other impacts of tourism ? on the balance of payments, or on atmospheric emissions of gases associated with travel, are relevant at global scale. Given the above, it is interesting that tourism is often managed and marketed by public agencies at regional scale. This scale does not necessarily correspond to a functional tourism destination, raising questions about appropriate policy determination, regulation and guidance for what might be a very varied set of regional visitor attractions and activities. To compound matters, good quality information on the socio-economic and environmental implications of tourism can be hard to come by at sub-national levels. This paper examines the use of a tourism satellite accounting and a related economic model structures to provide information on the economic scale and nature of tourism at over 100 sites across Wales, a region of the United Kingdom. The case study suggests that whilst such models can comprise a useful tool for policy, tourism and other policymakers may not yet be ready and able to understand and act on the resulting intelligence.

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