Searching for clusters in tourism. A quantitative methodological proposal
Aurora A.C. Teixeira
The tourism industry is one of Europe’s leading employers, and for many regions highly dependent on tourists’ spending, innovation is the difference between growth and stagnation. Thus, at a regional level, tourism may function as a driving force of socioeconomic development and thus contribute to the demise of regional disparities. Such lever effect is usually associated to a geographical concentration abusively denominated of clusters. Most of the studies within the tourism industry identify clusters resorting to simplistic analyses of geographic location measures or experts’ opinions. These latter tend to neglect the essence of the cluster concept, namely the inter-linkages among regional actors. In the present paper, we propose a methodology to rigorously identify tourism clusters, stressing the importance of networks and cooperation between agents.
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