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RESOURCES: PAPERS & PRESENTATIONS

Author : Jack Carlsen, Janne J. Liburd & Deborah Edwards
School/Work Place : Curtin Sustainable Tourism Centre, Australia (Jack Carlsen), University of Southern Denmark, Denmark (Janne Liburd), University of Technology Sydney, Australia (Deborah Edwards)
Contact : j.carlsen@curtin.edu.au
Year : 2010

This paper highlights the importance of new and established networks that underpin the innovation processes in sustainable tourism. It will draw on published literature as well as case studies to describe the various types of networks that have developed as an integral part of the innovation process (Carlsen et al, 2008). Innovation rarely occurs in isolation. Invariably, collaboration between like-minded individuals or agencies is essential in order to transform an idea or opportunity into a reality. In some cases, the links are not always intuitive or apparent and may come about through serendipity rather than strategy. In other cases, the formation of new networks gives rise to further innovation, creating a virtuous circle of process, product or service innovation. Established networks, such as those developed between government, industry and universities, are also a substantial source of innovation through research, knowledge development and dissemination.

True innovation in tourism businesses is nebulous and often driven by external forces such as changing customer needs, demographics, technology, government policy, environmental conditions, social imperatives or the supplier chain. Innovation in tourism can occur at different operational and sectoral levels and apply in a range of geographic locations. It can take the form of product, process, management or institutional innovations (Hjalager, 1996) and may be a disruptive or an incremental process (Schaper and Volery, 2007).

Innovation “remains fundamentally an application of knowledge” (Schaper and Volery 2007:64), which is best achieved through networks that serve as both repositories and generators of innovative ideas and information. There has since been a proliferation of product, process, managerial and institutional innovations that have embraced sustainability and this paper describes and analyses just a few examples of these. Hjalager (1996) indicates that networks are an integral part of the process of innovation, which often involves ‘redefinitions of interrelationships between actors’ (Hjalager, 1996, p. 202), although these relationships may be cooperative or confrontational, both still stimulate innovation (Tremblay, 2002). Hausman (2005) also finds that ‘ideological innovations, such as new management practices’ involve new partnerships as well as new ideas. Laing et al suggest that partnerships provide a means for the diffusion of innovations (Laing et al, forthcoming). Liburd and Hergesell (2007) recognise the importance of training, education and employee retention and succession to improve learning and innovation for sustainable tourism in the European North Sea Region.

People, as customers or operators, are at the core of innovation in tourism. Hence networks are critical and the social and cultural environment has to be supportive of innovative ideas and opportunities if they are to be realized. To shed light on this conversation cross-case analysis (Patton 1990) was applied to eight case studies to compare and contrast the different types and contexts of innovation and for an integrated overview of the network drivers, processes and barriers for innovation.


List of Articles
No. Subject Viewssort Date
16 Think Tank VII Social Responsibility and Innovation on Trafficking an... file 1901 Oct 13, 2013

Ethical questions related to globalization, human rights, unfair labor practices and trans-boundary exchanges of capital and work force create ever more complex challenges for the tourism sustainability agenda. In recent years, the tourism i...

Author: Camelia Tepelus 

Year: 2007 

15 Think Tank VIII Enhancing the Quality of Life through Cultural Events:... file 2237 Oct 13, 2013

The Wadden Sea Festival in Denmark is based on the idea of integrating the coastal environment in the presentation of contemporary art. Specifically, unique tidal differences are utilized to stage a range of performances. The Wadden Sea Fest...

Author: Janne J. Liburd & Anja Hergesell 

Year: 2008 

14 Think Tank VII The Uptake of Innovation in Tourism Organisations: Bar... file 2328 Oct 13, 2013

Innovation is fundamental to any industry in its quest to realising its potential. The tourism industry is no different in this pursuit of excellence and innovation but, unlike many other industries, it is largely comprised of small busines...

Author: Leo Jago & Margaret Deery 

Year: 2007 

13 Think Tank VII Getting Fit to Innovate: TUI's InnOlympics file 2993 Oct 13, 2013

Tether (2003) describes innovation within service industries as having a Cinderella status - marginal and neglected. The traditional approach to thinking about innovation has been to concentrate on manufacturing and within that, the role of...

Author: Graham Miller & Caroline Scarles 

Year: 2007 

12 Think Tank VII Innovations in Volunteer Tourism: A Case Study of Fund... file 3020 Oct 13, 2013

The popularity of volunteer tourism as a form of alternative tourism has grown significantly over the past decade (McGehee, and Norman, 2002). Volunteer tourists can now be found throughout the world participating in a wide array of social, ...

Author: Kevin Lyons 

Year: 2007 

11 Think Tank VII Web 2.0, Tourist Activated Networks and Sustainability... file 3069 Oct 13, 2013

With the emergence of Web 2.0, the Internet has begun to realize its potential in supporting the tourism experience. This presentation will first identify a number of applications within Web 2.0 that are visitor oriented - from Expedia and T...

Author: Daniel Fesenmaier 

Year: 2007 

10 Think Tank VII Rural Adventure Tourism and Social Entrepreneurship file 3467 Oct 13, 2013

The intent of this research is to provide a comparative analysis of several innovative social entrepreneurial businesses operating within the realm of rural adventure tourism. This qualitative, case-based research explores six companies, wh...

Author: Christina Heyniger & Kristin Lamoureaux 

Year: 2007 

9 Think Tank VII Barriers to Innovation in Hospitality Provision: Towar... file 3884 Oct 13, 2013

Recent challenges within the hospitality industry highlight a critical need for research and innovation to inform management practice. Surprisingly, however, a comprehensive review of literature has found that innovation research within the...

Author: Conrad Lashley & Barry O'Mahony 

Year: 2007 

8 Think Tank VII Branding Sustainability: Taking 'The Natural Step' in ... file 3982 Oct 13, 2013

Translation of the concept of sustainability into practice is fraught with problems. While policy advances in all sectors of the economy have made steps in the right direction the lack of clarity in defining what is meant by 'sustainability...

Author: Alison Gill & Peter Williams 

Year: 2007 

» Think Tank X The Importance of Networks for Innovation in Sustainab... file 4093 Oct 13, 2013

This paper highlights the importance of new and established networks that underpin the innovation processes in sustainable tourism. It will draw on published literature as well as case studies to describe the various types of networks that ...

Author: Jack Carlsen, Janne J. Liburd & Deborah Edwards 

Year: 2010 

6 Think Tank X Innovation of and in Informal Actor Network file 4348 Oct 13, 2013

How the informal sectors create and share innovation in gaining competition is very important in tourism development. Commonly, informal sectors are embedded in their routines and lack of innovation capacities. Based on the case of pedicab ...

Author: Maya Damayanti 

Year: 2010 

5 Think Tank IX Valuing Open Innovation Environments in Tourism Educat... file 4549 Oct 13, 2013

The world has changed tremendously since the publication of Our Common Future by the World Commission for Environment and Development (1987), which elevated the concept of sustainable development from grassroots initiatives to the forefront...

Author: Janne Liburd & Anne-Mette Hjalager 

Year: 2009 

4 Think Tank XI CRS 2.0: Management Perspectives of Sustainable Hospit... file 5779 Oct 14, 2013

In recent years, hotel companies have recognized the importance of engaging in responsible business practices as they relate to stakeholders including employees, guests, and the communities in which their properties are located. Accordingly...

Author: Stuart E. Levy & Sun-Young Park 

Year: 2011 

3 Think Tank VII The Community of Communicators and the Communication o... file 6708 Oct 13, 2013

In spite of the trend towards business as a key element in society and tourism, governments still play an important role in the sustainable development debate. Like any social institution, governments and related organizations do not always ...

Author: Keith Henning 

Year: 2007 

2 Think Tank VII Learning as Prerequisite for Innovations in Tourism - ... file 8026 Oct 13, 2013

This article reports on an ongoing project that focuses on learning and innovation as prerequisites for sustainable tourism in a transnational environment defined by the European North Sea Region. According to Buhalis (2000: 113) providing i...

Author: Janne Liburd & Anja Hergesell 

Year: 2007 

1 Think Tank VII Tourist Perceptions of Environmentally Friendly Innova... file 15577 Oct 13, 2013

As the environmental movement got underway and environmental awareness came into focus in the late 20th century, the tourism industry began incorporating 'environmentally friendly' efforts into their business practices. Requests for towel r...

Author: Kathleen L. Andereck 

Year: 2007 

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