East versus West: a useful distinction or misleading myth

Moscardo, Gianna M. (2004) East versus West: a useful distinction or misleading myth. Tourism, 52 (1). pp. 7-20.

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Abstract

One of the most challenging effects of globalization in tourism is the need to manage an increasingly culturally diverse workforce and market. In response to this need there has been a steady increase in the attention paid by tourism researchers to the influence of culture on visitor and employee motivations, decisions, and evaluations. However, conducting cross-cultural research has its own challenges and a number of issues have been raised with regard to the methods and conceptual foundations of this research. This paper addresses several of these issues including the need to critically examine simplistic distinctions such as can be found in many discussions of Western versus Asian cultures, the need to explore the relative contribution of culture versus other variables, and the need to question methods developed from Western theories. This paper reports on a comparison of Japanese, Chinese, UK and US tourists (n=2215) surveyed on commercial tourism operations to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. The results failed to support an East-West distinction, more differences were found between the Japanese and Chinese samples than between these two groups and the other national cultural groups studied. In addition, the analyses revealed that the different cultural groups responded to travel benefits questions in distinctive ways and culture was a significant influence on overall satisfaction when compared to the other variables. Some implications are drawn for cross-cultural approaches in tourism research.

Item ID: 7163
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1332-7461
Keywords: Australia; cross-cultural research; Great Barrier Reef; travel benefits
Date Deposited: 25 Mar 2010 00:17
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1506 Tourism > 150603 Tourism Management @ 100%
SEO Codes: 90 COMMERCIAL SERVICES AND TOURISM > 9003 Tourism > 900302 Socio-Cultural Issues in Tourism @ 100%
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