Edited by Dieter K. Müller
Chapter 10: Exploring the geographic dimensions of tourism work and workers
In the neoliberal era we live in, a number of issues crop up, seriously hindering the pursuit of equity/social justice dimensions of sustainable development in numerous communities worldwide. Importantly, in many tourism-related sectors we notice an ever-increasing reliance on outsourced casual/part-time labour, much of it based on zero-hours contracts. Often we hear that workers demand a ‘living wage’, given that government-mandated minimum wage contracts – if they exist – do not reflect the reality of ever-increasing living costs encountered in places affected by tourism. This chaptercalls for a research agenda relating to the geographies of tourism work and workers. Specifically, this agenda draws inspiration fromthe work of Andrew Herod, who argues that workers are the authors of their own everyday geographies under capitalism, as well as the research conducted by Tufts, who specifically examines issues revolving around the geography of hotel workers. The chapter seeks to set an agenda to further strengthen our understanding of the everyday geographies of people who are classified as tourism workers. Issues addressed relate inter alia to the workers’ identity, geographic mobility (or immobility), and workers’coping strategies in negotiatinga highly uneven playing field in the working environment but also in terms of access to resources such as affordable housing. The chapteralso raises questions such as:In what manner do recent developments (e.g., the rise of the shared economy) impact the geography of tourism workers?
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