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Perceptions and attitudes of Nakhon Si Thammarat residents towards tourism impacts and development

Sumethokhul, Patcharee (2016) Perceptions and attitudes of Nakhon Si Thammarat residents towards tourism impacts and development. PhD. thesis, Universiti Utara Malaysia.

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Abstract

In Thailand, tourism is viewed as a tool for community development, especially in the rural areas, and is often considered as an instrument in revitalizing the local economy, facilitating the improvement of the quality of life and safeguarding the natural and cultural resources. However, studies suggest that tourism development brings environmental, sociocultural and economic impacts to the community. Thus, it is vital that the planners and the stakeholders of tourism understand the local residents' perception of tourism and its impacts and must engage them actively during the planning stage of tourism development. The study examines how the residents of Nakhon Si Thammarat province in Southern Thailand perceive the impacts of tourism and how this relates to their support for future tourism development. This study used mixed methods, combining a survey using questionnaires, in-depth qualitative interviews, and participant observation. A total of 544 usable questionnaires were analyzed and the respondents of the study were divided into two groups; tourism participants and tourism non-participants. While for the in-depth qualitative interview, 12 community leaders were involved. Findings of this study show that the residents recognize several positive impacts of tourism, such as; better standards of roads and other public facilities, preservation of heritage attraction and cultural festivals. While the negative impacts of tourism are; poor air quality, crowded areas during the cultural festival, construction of large hotels, resorts and tourists’ attractions has destroyed the natural environment. There are eight research hypotheses in this study. Results of the hypothesis testing found some significant differences in perception between residents grouped by their participation in tourism, their employment, and length of residency; towards the positive and negative impacts of tourism. The study also found that the residents who perceived positive impacts of tourism will support for additional tourism development while those who perceived negative impacts will support for restricted tourism development. This study thus contributes to the theoretical advancement in the field of residents’ attitudes studies. Specifically, the study findings demonstrate that residents’ perceptions on the impacts of tourism can serve as a valuable concept in evaluating residents’ support for future tourism development.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD.)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Residents’ Perception, Tourism Impacts, Residents’ Support, Tourism Development, Southern Thailand
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General) > G154.9-155.8 Travel and state. Tourism
Divisions: Ghazali Shafie Graduate School of Government
Depositing User: Mr. Badrulsaman Hamid
Date Deposited: 09 May 2017 16:07
Last Modified: 09 May 2017 16:07
URI: http://etd.uum.edu.my/id/eprint/6233

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