Boom, Samantha, Jelmer Weijschede, Frans Melissen, Ko Koens, & Igor Mayer (2020, in press). Identifying stakeholder perspectives and worldviews on sustainable urban tourism development using a Q-sort methodology. Current Issues in Tourism. (ePub in advance of print) (doi: 10.1080/13683500.2020.1722076) (Open Access:

Abstract: Tourism growth, particularly in cities, is coming under increased scrutiny. However, even often visited cities appear to find it difficult to agree upon a strategy to limit tourism growth. The current paper investigates this issue by looking at the extent to which different stakeholders’ perspectives on tourism development align. Q-sort methodology is employed to find the main worldviews and the extent to which they are shared by stakeholders in similar roles (e.g. policymakers, industry, resident). Results point to the existence of five different worldviews, which differ in the extent to which tourism growth is desirable or problematic and whether resident participation is advantageous or counterproductive. Stakeholders have highly different worldviews, even those with similar roles, which may help explain the difficulty to change the tourism growth paradigm as they limit opportunities for generating new consensus-based collective solutions. If we accept that tourism development strategies are driven and informed at least in part by individual worldviews, it may be impossible to make ‘objective’ policy choices. Instead, it might be more useful to explore possibilities to allow stakeholders to express their worldviews to better understand what sustainable tourism development entails for different people at different places and moments in time.

Ko Koens <> is in the Academy of Hotel and Facility Management, Breda University of Applied Sciences, Breda, The Netherlands, and the School of Tourism & Hospitality, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.