Challenges for the Positioning of Destinations: Destination Formation Processes and Territorial Boundaries

Activity: Talk or presentationConference PresentationsResearch

Karlheinz Wöhler - Speaker

The territorial boundaries of destinations are on trial in times of globalization and destination competition. The need for larger territorial destinations is widely accepted in political arenas. The fusion of destinations in a unity-destination aims at maintaining international status or achieving competitiveness through a central coordination of different marketing-functions and especially through a common strategy. The most important assumption for size is that only a large destination with their financial asset, infrastructure and knowledge concentrated in a high professional destination management organization can provide the territorial framework for competitiveness.
(Small) destinations, in turn, see a benefit in using internal resources and capabilities to find niches and profiles within a tourism market counteracting already existing large destinations. Instead of designing tourist products with a view to the market, (small) destinations cluster their endogenous resources and see if there is a market for such (creative and innovative) cluster-products.
Such an embeddedness generates social and cultural capital and in this respect a community identifying with the destination, whereas the actors in the large destination have a connection with an disembedded marketing-product that you can find anywhere.
This outline directs to governance problems like: hierarchic or network regulation, centralization or decentralization, knowledge based governance. These subjects become topics of the paper.


International Geographical Union Pre-Conference Symposium 2012 : Transforming and Managing Destinations. Tourism and Leisure in a Time of Global Change and Risks


Trier, Germany

Event: Conference