Stakeholder Power and Engagement in an English Seaside Context: Implications for Destination Leadership

Kennedy, Victoria and Augustyn, Marcjanna M. (2014) Stakeholder Power and Engagement in an English Seaside Context: Implications for Destination Leadership. Tourism Review, 69 (3). pp. 187-201. ISSN 1660-5373

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This paper examines stakeholder power and engagement within an increasingly competitive English seaside resort setting. It adopts a structuralist and functionalist perspective and develops an enabling conceptualisation of power that incorporates structural and agency components in stakeholders’ reasons for engaging. Based on the conceptual interdependencies between stakeholder power and engagement presented in this study, and the limitations of previous studies on destination leadership in this area, this paper also discusses implications for destination leadership.
As a qualitative and exploratory study, mixed-method research was adopted using questionnaires and semi-structured interviews with destination stakeholders from a prominent tourism action group. The primary research was carried out in an English seaside resort between 2010 and 2011. Data is used to draw a stakeholder map as a visual tool.
Eight elements of enabling power are confirmed to be of importance in identifying stakeholder power and engagement. The level of power varies depending on stakeholders’ position within a network. These findings direct our attention towards adopting a complexity leadership approach in an increasingly competitive destination environment.
Research limitations/implications
Focus on an English seaside resort although results can be transferred to other similar sized destinations where the focus is on local tourism policy development.
Innovative conceptualisation of power in stakeholder theory by drawing primarily on a sociological understanding of power as an enabler and not as an inhibitor for development, leadership and change in seaside resorts. Use of leadership theories to interpret data and infer implications for destination leadership.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: ‘This article is (c) Emerald Group Publishing and permission has been granted for this version to appear here Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited.'
Keywords: Leadership, Stakeholder engagement, Power, Tourism policy, Seaside tourism
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Science > Geography and Environmental Science
Depositing User: Victoria Kennedy
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2016 15:52
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2018 22:58

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