Edited by Dallen J. Timothy
Chapter 3: Neoliberalism and global tourism
The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the links between neoliberal political economy and global tourism. The chapter undertakes a conceptual analysis by reviewing the tourism studies, social theory and political economy literature. The findings indicate that neoliberal free-market economic policies are globally enshrined by intergovernmental organisations and the Washington consensus. The neoliberal model of global tourism is found to contain significant limitations and risks for host communities, in particular the commodification of leisure, work and the natural environment. Scholars from a range of fields have sought to advance alternative models to insulate tourism from commodifying forces, one of the most recent has been the sharing economy. However, it has been found that even the sharing economy is not immune from the depredations of the market. It is recommended that local communities and tourists seek to reclaim a non-market sphere as a basis from which to operate tourism ventures. This can be achieved through a social valuing agenda and host and global communities undertaking collective action to ensure that public goods and people are protected.
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