Chapter 10: Industrial Tourism: Opportunities for City and Enterprise
Leo van den Berg, Alexander Otgaar, Christian Berger and Rachel Xiang Feng 10.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter summarizes the findings of a large international comparative study carried out by the European Institute for Comparative Urban Research (Euricur) into the development of industrial tourism in cities. Industrial tourism is a type of tourism which involves visits to operational or non-operational firms with a core business that is non-tourism related; industrial tourism offers visitors an experience with regard to the product, the production process, the applications and historical backgrounds. The aim of this research has been to promote knowledge development in the field of industrial tourism, resulting in concrete recommendations for municipalities, firms and other stakeholders. The international research is based on the assumption that industrial tourism offers opportunities for both city and enterprise. Particularly for cities with a considerable industrial base, industrial tourism comprises interesting possibilities to strengthen the economic structure (direct and indirect employment) and to increase the supply of tourist products. For such cities, industrial tourism is a potential growth sector that matches with their identity: the sector offers opportunities to strengthen their distinctiveness and image, notably by building on their existing assets. Many cities have the assets to develop industrial tourism, but fail to capitalise on them. In most cases industrial tourism is only restricted to low-profile company visits, without any clear vision of the municipality or firm on the strategic value of it, not to mention coordinated product development. For that reason, our study targets cities and firms...
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