By Sheela Agarwal, Gareth Shaw
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Additional info for Managing Coastal Tourism Resorts: A Global Perspective (Aspects of Tourism)
3), this resembles the three-tiered ontological structure championed by critical realists, comprising the domains of ‘the empirical’, ‘the actual’ and ‘the real’ (Bhaskar, 1978: 13). The first is exemplified by surface or experiential knowledge, as in the claims made by various practitioners to the effect that the least competitive resorts lack sufficient en-suite accommodation and/or wet-weather facilities. The second relates to events that happen whether we perceive them or not, for example the adverse effects of competition and resource depletion upon tourist arrivals to a given resort, enshrined in unilinear models of tourism development such as the TALC.
This in turn has also had the effect of weakening the voice of the tourism industry throughout the levels of government, limiting public interest in tourism and leaving tourism low on the political agenda, all problems that have also been found to occur in English seaside resorts (Agarwal, 2005; Shaw & Williams, 1997a; see Chapters 3 and 4 for a fuller discussion). Denmark and Sweden In contrast to Britain, Belgium and the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden’s seaside resorts along the more developed coasts of North Jutland and Halland, and the Baltic Islands of Bornholm and Gotland, have experienced less of a decline (Mason & Studsholt, 2001).
Of greater importance, however, is the hitherto unanswered charge that explanations for resort decline based on competition from other tourism places and/or the existence of a resort life-cycle invariably fail to ‘sufficiently interrogate changes in fashion, style and taste which have transformed British [or Belgian, Dutch, French, German, etc] social life in the past few decades’ (Urry, 1997: 103). These changes, in turn, have occurred alongside but are not reducible to a shift in the regime of accumulation in advanced capitalist societies (Ioannides & Debbage, 1997), from Fordism (characterised by mass production and consumption, standardisation and large-volume sales with attendant economies of scale) to neo-Fordism (characterised by flexible/smaller-scale production, increased market segmentation and more individualised consumption).