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    Constructing Tourism as a Product: A local study of Tourism Development in County Laois

    Culleton, Michael (1998) Constructing Tourism as a Product: A local study of Tourism Development in County Laois. Masters thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    Tourism has become a very important industry worldwide in recent decades; as a source of employment, income and foreign currency. Consultant’s reports and government policies have highlighted the potential for tourism growth in Ireland since the early eighties. In certain regions where tourism already exists the instigation of further growth consists of new marketing strategies and increasing the product base. However in other regions, where tourism infrastructure and experience are lacking, tourism development is more difficult. This thesis is a case study of tourism development in such an area: County Laois. The development of tourism has only been pursued in Laois over the last decade by a local voluntary group. Being an inland county, with an unspectacular landscape, has meant that it has been ignored by tourists in the past. Moreover a negative image of the county and the lack of a ‘tourism culture’ have been identified as the major obstacles to tourism development. Today a range of tourism products and services: accommodation, activities and heritage attractions, are provided for visitors to the county. The tourist industry in Laois provides employment and income for those service providers. Sociologists have been more critical however in their analysis of the tourism sector. They have highlighted a number of less obvious effects of tourism that ultimately lead to changes in local lifestyle and identity. In this thesis the construction of a tourist sector in Laois is examined. It is argued that tourism development in Laois does involve a number of less tangible processes and approaches, that may ultimately be deconstructing local culture. In this light it is argued that information on tourism’s impact locally be gathered and analysed in future tourism development plans.

    Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
    Keywords: Constructing Tourism; Tourism Development; County Laois;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology
    Item ID: 5295
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 08 Aug 2014 11:10

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