Given that tourism is very fragile to terrorism, and that it has come to dominate or perhaps displace, economy of most courtiers, it is imperative to take a closer look at the interrelation between tourism terrorism to lessen the negative impacts. As indicated in the introduction, the first approach to the studies into relationship between tourism and security incidents focus on diverse but interrelated topics ranging from the nature of such relationship (including types, causes, targets, motives and so forth) to the impact of terrorism on the tourism demands. The overarching objective of this chapter is to review studies with such approach which emerged in the beginning of the 1990s.
The chapter begins with a general discussion and overview of the direct and indirect importance of tourism to the national and global economies and proceeds to discuss the susceptibility of tourism industry to rampant crisis. Those terrorism concepts which relates to tourism industry are briefly reviewed. As contribution to literature, a time series analysis approach with yearly aggregated data is presented to show how and to what extent terrorists have targeted tourism since 1968. The rational and motives behind terrorists attack on tourism destination is a crucial area which seeks logically examine relationship between terrorism and tourism. The next section devoted to these significant discussions. Then it would turn to next area of studies or the impact of terrorism as a tourism crisis on the tourism industry. For this purpose the extant research on the impact of terrorism on the tourism industry in several countries will be reviewed. It also considers various determinants of terrorism acts on the tourism industry. Last but not least, it explores the theories and components of image and perception management. It is also imperative to clarify the definitions of a few repeatedly used terms that there is potential for confusion among them. This chapter also attempt to offer definition and develop empirically derived concept.
Despite recent crisis, tourism represent, one of the fastest growing sectors in the world economy. In 1960 the whole tourist arrivals were around 70 million while it rocketed to some 700 million in 2003. According to World Travel and Tourism Council, out of overall world exports, tourism industry is account for 12.2% and provides 8.3% of total jobs (WTTC, 2007: 6). These figures represent direct economic impact of the industry while the indirect impacts estimated to be much larger. The indirect impacts are enormous. For instance; it plays an important role in the development of new cities, societies and provides them with necessary infrastructure and superstructure. What is more, tourism helps the protection of environment by stimulating the creation of national parks for wild life as well as the conservation and preservation of beaches and marine life as a part of tourist products. From cultural point of view, it offers more opportunities for the restoration of old monuments. It also encourages small industries, souvenirs, handmade art and craft; it improves the standard of living in many societies. Moreover, the tourist spending in the tourist establishment (hotels, restaurants, and transportation) doesn’t go totally to them. These establishments need to purchase goods and services from other sectors with local economy (services of builders, accountants, food, and beverage suppliers). Bale (1998) argues that tourism makes much contribution to employment by differentiating between its impact on direct and indirect employments.
“The contribution of tourism and travel to both industrialized and developing countries is now so great that any downturns in the level of activity in the industry are a cause of concern. The repercussions extend beyond activities directly associated with tourism, notably airlines, hotels and catering, to sectors that supply intermediate or final goods that are purchased by firms and employees in the industry, so that all sectors of the economy are affected to a greater or lesser extent.” Adam Blake and M. Thea Sinclair, “Tourism Crisis Management: adjusting to a temporary downturn,”Sixth Annual Conference on Global Economic Analysis, 2002, p. 1.
Tourism is important not only to developed nations but to many less developed ones, whose chief resources often come from their visitor attractions. Since no other substitute major natural resources, such as oil or heavy industry is available in such countries, they are heavily reliant on international tourism to generate national income. Although the lack of the necessary infrastructure and communication facilities are often proved to be an obstacle to attract a considerable number of tourists, some less developed countries demonstrated considerable success in attraction of tourists (Harrison 2001). In recent years, tourism has been focus of attentions for its potential to help â€Žto the reduction of poverty. UNWTO statistics reveals the growing strength of the â€Žtourism industry for developing countries. International tourism receipts for â€Ždeveloping countries accounted for a record number of 203 billion US dollar in 1995. According to the UNWTO, “tourism is one of the major export sectors of poor countries and a leading source of foreign exchange in 46 of the 49 Least Developed Countries (LDCs)”. (UNWTO 2007: p 38)
Terrorism background and definition
Terrorism phenomena across the world is traceable to centuries ago when Jewish patriots, begun to challenge the Roman sovereignty in holy lands (Poland, 1988). In our times it dates back to the latter half of the twentieth century when terrorist attacks came to occupy a central place to in news headlines and it was in 1960s and 1970s that grabbed the attention of the people from all over the world. It was for the first time in world history that so few people managed to put into trouble so many peoples in a quick and effective manner (Sacks, 2004). The attacks against the US on 11th September 2001, and the post-9/11 attacks, including the bombings in Bali, Jakarta, Casablanca, Mombasa, Madrid, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, London, India and other places are prime examples to this. The terrorism attacks have been of importance to tourism industry as the tourism destination turn out to a prime target of terrorist attacks.
Despite the omnipresence of terrorism attacks in the world today, there has been little consensus among scholars of terrorism studies over the concept. There are several reasons why terrorism is difficult to define (Cronin 2002). Firstly, labelling an action as terrorism or a group as terrorist is hardly free from ideological or political partiality (Moxon-Browne, 1994). In addition, most definitions are very flawed. Over time particularly when they come to power, the terrorism groups may recognized as a legitimate government. A prime example is Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress in South Africa. Another source of ambiguity in the definition lay in differing perception of what terrorism as it means different things to different governments and different scholars.
To better define the terrorism it is important to set apart terrorism from crime-related acts. Tarlow (2001) lists the differences between acts of crimes and terrorism. He argued that dealing with criminal acts requires well trained police forces while terrorism is more war like in nature which can not cope with police actions alone. Rather it needs cooperation between all stakeholders in question. In addition, the goals of terrorist are destruction through victimization and seek publicity and mass economic destructions with added bonus of loss of life.
Table 1.1 Key Difference between Acts of Tourism Crime and Terrorism
Usually economic or social gain
To gain publicity and sometimes sympathy for a cause.
Usual type of victim
Person may be known to the perpetrator or selected because he/she may yield economic gain
Killing is random and appears to be more in line with a stochastic model. Numbers may or may not be important
Defenses in use
Often reactive, reports taken
Some pro-active devices such as radar detectors
Robin Hood model
Usually local and rarely makes the international news
Almost always is broadcast around the world
Most common forms in tourism industry are:
Crimes of distraction
Potential for bio-chemical warfare
Often very low, in many cases the travel and tourism industry does everything possible to hide the information
Almost impossible to hide. Numbers are reported with great accuracy and repeated often
Length of negative effects on the local tourism industry
In most cases, it is short term
In most cases, it is long term unless replaced by new positive image
Source: Tarlow (2001: 134-135)
Since the extent to which terrorism challenges governments and threatens civilian populations differs considerably, it is possible to constitute a typology based on which we can compare different types of terrorism. One approach is to differentiate between domestic restricted to the borders of one country and international consist of the citizens of more than one country terrorism. However, this distinction is proved to be perplexing in practice as most terrorist groups have links to abroad. (Chalk 1996) A more elaborate typology categorizes groups in terms of their primary motivations. Based upon such criteria, Peters (2002) classified terrorists into two broad categories: the practical terrorist and the apocalyptic terrorist. The demand of practical terrorists is restricted to recreation of a state and society without destruction of the whole society, what its followers have in mind is to eradicate what they see as a political evil. A prime example of such terrorism is anti-abortion terrorists in United State. Apocalyptic terrorists are very different. Their ultimate goal is to destroy completely the current worlds and build up a new order from the outset. Table 1.2 summarizes the main feature of each approach.
Table 1.2 Differences between Practical and Apocalyptic Terrorists
Hopes to change a policy through violence
Victim of self-rage and anger
Time frame for success
This world oriented
Next world oriented
Attitude toward religion
Tends toward secularization
Tends toward religious mystical experiences
Rarely suicidal, not a key goal
Highly suicidal; suicide is a
means to a greater end
Recreation of state or policy
Annihilation of the state, or people
Willingness to use WMDs
Limited use of chemical
Biological or nuclear
Value of human life
Source: Peters (2002) p.86
Regardless of these ambiguities, it is imperative to offer a working definition. For the purposes of this research, the terrorism defined as “the calculated threat or use of violence designed to create an overwhelming fear in a larger target population, perpetuated by individuals, sub-national groups, or state actors to attain political, social, or economic objectives.” (Alexander, 2002) take the original article
http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/0/9/8/4/7/pages98470/p98470-3.php (GETTING IT RIGHT: Understanding Effective Counter-Terrorism Strategies)
The records of terrorism attacks on tourism targets
Tourism and terrorism has always been inevitably interwoven. Over the last 30 years tourist industry have been key targets for terrorists’ attacks. The terrorists believed that they have been very successful in accomplishing their goals through terrorism attacks to tourism destinations. As international terrorism augmented by September 11, 2001 attacks on US targets by al Qaida, its inevitable effects on tourism became the subject of serious concern (Sabasteanski, 2005). Paraskevas and Arendell’s (2007) list of pos-9/11 truism destinations and tourist targets attacked by terrorists up to September 2006 include more than 18 incidents. As such, Mitroff (2005) is right to state that “it is no longer a question of ‘if’ terrorists will strike but rather a question of ‘when,’ ‘how’ and ‘how prepared’ the destination is to deal with them.” The records of terrorist incident on the tourism industry between 01/01/1968 and 07/20/2007 indicate that tourists have been target of 261 out of 33817 terrorist accidents. (Figure 1) This accidents account for 676 tourists’ loss of lives and 1875 injury (Figure 2 and 3).
Figure1.1 International Terrorism, 1968-2007, Number of Incidents
Source: US Department of State (various years) and RAND series
Figure1.2 International Terrorism, 1968-2007, Number of Deaths
Source: US Department of State (various years) and RAND series
Figure1.3 International Terrorism, 1968-2007, Number of Injuries
Source: US Department of State (various years) and RAND series
The targeted list of terrorist attacks varies. The 1960s and 1970s was the time of plane hijackings. Consequently, the terrorist targeted the tourism destination initially through plane hijackings in the time. In the 1960s, hijackings were often from the U.S. to Cuba with no intention to harm passengers. However, in the 1970s, the purpose of terrorists’ actions was the loss of life plus damage to the property. Thus we witnessed the more severe actions from them. During the 1970s, the Munich Olympic Games became the focus of one of the most notorious terrorist attacks and set a new standard for terrorism at major world events. In the consequent years, the targeted list encompassed a variety of sites including, airlines, cruise ships, buses, restaurants and cafes, events and festivals, or sporting or cultural institutions, wherever people get together for leisure or any other purpose. In the beginning of 90s, a significant number of terrorists’ incidents occurred at tourist destinations, while in the recent years we witnessed a shift in the targets of terrorism accidents (Mansfeld and Pizam, 2006). (Figure 4)
Figure1.4 International Terrorism, 1968-2007, Incidents by Targets, Compare Tourists to other Targets
Source: US Department of State (various years) and RAND series
Tourism scholars argued that understanding terrorist motive may shed light on the relationship between terrorism and tourism (Sonmez, 1997). As such they have sought to explain the motive behind the terrorist activities regarding the tourism destination. To date, there is no consensus among scholars on their explanation of terrorist objectives, however almost all agree that terrorists have much to gain by targeting tourists. In their influential work on terrorism and tourism Sonmez, Apostolopoulos, and Tarlow (1999: 85) noted that tourism destinations offer ”a cost-effective instrument to deliver a broader message of ideological/political opposition”. They placed the terrorists’ objective in two main groups: strategic objectives and ideological objectives.
With respect to strategic objectives, they maintained that terrorists tend to accomplish some goals that can be found only in tourism destinations. These goals include mass casualties, mass publicity and great economic damage. As discussed earlier, tourism is lucrative business interconnected with several other industries; thus an attack on the tourism industry would affect considerably a number of secondary industries as well. What is more, tourism officials have often avoided taking tough steps to stop terrorism because such measures often result in frightening the potential customers. As such the tourism destinations have seen as an easy target for terrorism attacks. Tourism destinations also are visited by a regular flow of new people, thus terrorists are hardly suspected. In other words, terrorists can easily disguise their identity in the tourism destinations. Tourism industry is also a sensitive area to media especially when nationals of other countries are engaged it will receive massive coverage from international media and at the same time it bypass their government’s censorship. (Weimann and Winn 1994: 143)
The ideological objectives are more complex ones encompassing clashing values, cultures, or socioeconomic levels. Such motives push the terrorists to target the tourists for their symbolic value as proxy of larger group or apparently their governments. In his discussion of terrorism in Egypt, Aziz (1995) put into question a widely accepted notion that Islam is simply against foreign tourists. According to Aziz, tourists differs from and locals by many cultural and social gaps. Following Richter’s he argue that since travel styles can be representative of ideological values, class behavior, and political culture of tourists and their countries, tourists may be targeted because of their tourism styles which may demonstrate conspicuous consumption (i.e., demonstration of money or credit cards; flashy photography equipment; expensive clothes, jewelry, and luggage). The clash of cultures and values between locals and travelers can also account for motives. Certain tourist behaviors (i.e., consumption of pork and alcohol; gambling; Western dress; codes of behavior incongruent with Islamic tradition) oppose to Islamic cultural values-are also suggested as a possible explanation for the Egyptians’ frustration (Aziz 1995). Wahab (1996) stated that sometimes terrorism “specifically targets tourism because it is seen as a movement of visitors representing a form of neo-colonialism or a threat to well-established societal norms, traditions, value-systems, and religious convictions”.
The impact of terrorist attack to tourism industry
“The impact of terrorism on a state’s economy may be enormous, leading to unemployment,
homelessness, deflation, crime and other economic and social ills” (Laurance, 2003:2)
Previous studies based on the accumulate evidence throughout the world shows that the impact of terrorists attacks on tourism industry, destination, the local community, the tourists are in the most cases negative and resulted in decline in tourism demands. Such incidents paralysed or severely impacted the local tourism industry as result of trip cancellation and the inclination of passengers of booking to safer alternative destinations. These events have resulted in major drops in tourism demand, for example we witnessed the loss of more than a million arrivals from the United States to Europe in 1986 down 23% from 1985 because of December 1985 Palestinian terrorists’ attacks in airports in Rome and Vienna and the 1986 hijacking of TWA flight. (Brady and Widdows, 1988: 8; Hurley, 1988; Conant et al, 1988)
The following is copied from: Effects of News Shock on Inbound Tourist Demand Volatility in Korea http://jtr.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/44/4/457.pdf
Blake and Sinclair (2003) explored the effects of the September 11 terrorist attack in the United States using a computable general equilibrium model. In their study, they reported the percentage decreases in the number of visits during September 2001 compared to the previous 12 months were 34% for domestic and 23% for international travel. Baron analysed monthly tourism figures to measure the effect of terrorism on tourism in Israel, Spain, Egypt and turkey. For instance, the analysis indicated that ongoing terrorism cost Israel approximately 332000 visitors from North America between Spring of 1985 to the end of 1987, at a cost of around 54 million U.S. Dollars (??). Others have also reported reductions in tourist arrival and receipts in the periods following terrorist action in, for example, Israel (Pizam 1999), Egypt (Wahab, 1996) and Northern Ireland (Pizam, l999; Wall, 1996). In addition to quantifying the reduction in the number of visitors to destinations affected by terrorism, studies have also assessed the duration of this impact. Using newspaper reports of terrorism world-wide between 1985 and 1998 Pizam and Smith (2000), found that 79% of media reported terrorist incidents were associated with a significant decline in tourism, and that the effect lasted between one and six months. Enders and Sandler (1991) estimated that an average terrorist incident in Spain in the period between 1970 and 1988 resulted in a decrease of approximately 140,000 visitors. However, the decline did not start until three months after the incident, and took around two years for visitor numbers to stabilize at a le just below that prior to the incident. A somewhat longer delay was observed tourism to Greece and Italy, where it was between six and nine months after terrorist attack before tourism figures started to decrease (Enders et al., 1992). Pizam and Smith (2000) argue that observed time delays in the deterrent effect of terrorist action might be because travelers would usually forfeit the costs of the travel if they were to cancel at short notice.
In addition to the effects of terrorism on tourism over time, research has also examined whether the deterrent effect is limited just to the country targeted by the terrorists or whether it extends to other destinations. Enders et al., (1992) identified a generalized deterrent effect of terrorism in certain European countries on tourism throughout Continental Europe during the 1970s and 1980s. They also identified that terrorism in France did not specifically impact French tourism, but that it did contribute to lost revenues for continental Europe as a whole, suggesting that the deterrence was generalized to the whole continent. However, it is not clear why there was not any reduction in visitors to France. Similarly, Richter and Waugh (1936) state that tourism to Switzerland was adversely affected by terrorism in France, Italy and Austria.
The determinants of terrorist attacks to tourism industry
The scholars identified diverse variables determining the impacts of terrorism on the tourism industry and the ability of countries to recover quickly. However they failed to offer any integrated empirical or theoretical frameworks for the casual relationship between these variables. Still, almost all studies refer to ‘tourism demand drop’ as a proxy for tourism industry suffering. Santana (1997) developed a model, which bring together the psychological and demographic factors that tend to influence the attitude to international travel (or destination image) referred to as deterrence (or drop in demand) in the light of threat from terrorism. He identified the psychological factors as Thrill and Adventure Seeking (TAS), Experience Seeking (ES), attitude to international travel (AIT), risk perception of political hazards and risk perception of physical hazards. The socialization factors of age, gender and travel experience are included in the model as well.
Figure1.3 casual relationship among determinants of terrorists’ attacks to tourism industry
Source: Santana (1997), p. 457
To find out which certain acts of terrorism has more determining impact on tourism demand than others, Pizam and Smith (2000) identified a variety of characteristics of terrorism activities including frequencies, locations, severity and motives. They also took into account destination image and mass media as two important intervening which suppose to impact the tourism demand over the security incidents.
Elsewhere Pizam (1997) have maintained that the impact of terrorism attacks on tourism industry varys by its severity of the event and the frequency of occurrence. He noted that:
acts resulting in mass destruction of life and property followed by loss of life and bodily harm have the strongest effect on tourism demand. . . . Acts resulting in loss of property only have the lowest effect on tourism demand. . . . All else being equal, acts occurring more frequently will have a more intense, widespread and lengthy effect on tourism demand than those occurring less frequently (Pizam, 1997: 11).
Tarlow(2006) argues that in the last decades there does not seem to be a relationship between a locale’s base population size and the act of terrorism. As such, terrorism has targeted both rural and urban settings (Mansfeld and Pizam, 2006:17). Discussing on risk evaluation, Walker and Page, (2003) has demonstrated the interrelationship between severity and frequency of incident on a graph. As they indicated there is a direct correlation between frequency of problems and its severity. As such the minor incidents happens more frequent than the severe ones like terrorism.
Figure 1.4 The Tourist Health and Safety Continuum: Severity and Frequency of Incidents
Source: Walker and Page, 2003, page 222
Image and Perception management
Terrorism attacks on tourism destination have not always left an enduring impact on the tourism industry. Yet, the comparative evidence show that soon after the event receives the international coverage, the information it conveys will be result in negative image among potential tourists and this in turn lead to cancelation their travel and /or choosing to book a more secure place. (Mansfeld and Pizam, 2005) Therefore, the host countries tend to take necessary measures to lessen the negative images by conveying correct, impartial and market oriented messages. Lepp and Gibson (2003) referred to four key authorities responsible for disseminating such information
â€¢ Security and risk information issued and communicated by governmental agencies in the generating markets (in the form of travel advisories);
â€¢ The global and local mass media;
â€¢ Governmental tourism organizations in the affected receiving destination; and
â€¢ The travel industry in the generating markets (Lepp and Gibson, 2003).
Since discussing on all aspects of the topic will be beyond of the scope of the research I only explore the destination image and the role of media.
4.6.1 The Concept of Image (Tourism Events thesis) pp 57
An image is a concept that is hard to understand. It has both vague and shifting meanings and used in a variety of contexts and disciplines, thereby creating different meanings. The definition for tourist destination image that is most commonly cited is that by Crompton
(1979, in Jenkins, 1999):
“â€¦the sum of beliefs, ideas and impressions that a person has of a
destination.” (p. 18)
Many authors have also defined tourism image of a destination as the mental portrayal of a destination (Alhemoud & Armstrong, 1996; Kotler, et al., 1993, in Erfurt et al., 2003).
The image of a destination is a crucial factor in a tourist’s destination choice process (Jenkins, 1999) and according to Mercer (1971, in Mossberg, 2000) the initial image formation stage is the most important phase in the buying process when selection a destination. Only the destinations the individual is aware of will be considered in the destination selection process and this awareness implies an image of the destination (Mossberg, 2000). Furthermore, according to Fakey and Crompton (1991) only destinations with positive images can be expected to prosper, while those with less favourable images may never achieve their fullest tourism potential.
To make decision on where to go or choosing the one destination over another by potential travellers has long been of great significant to academics and tourist stakeholders. The existing literature suggested that destination choices are influenced and conditioned by both internal (such as images, perceptions, motives, attitudes, and beliefs) and external factors (i.e., time, destination attributes, perceived costs of tourism product, buyer characteristics, and benefits sought). Image among other factors received more attentions as a deciding factor in choosing on destination. Thus the scholars employed the concept of “destination image” to describe this determining factor. Bojanic (1991: p??) defined country destination image as “the impressions that a person or persons hold about a country in which they do not reside”. Similarly Crompton Crompton (1979: 18, in Jenkins, 1999) noted: destination image is “the sum of beliefs, ideas, and impressions that a person has of a destination”. Due to its importance, destination image has come to consider as a dependent variable in the consequent studies and the scholars attempted to identify the determinants that define, modify, and strengthen this construct. For instance, Hall and O’Sullivan (1996) identified three basic elements creating a destination image (a) Returning tourists via verbal reporting, (b) the role of Media in making image and (c) Overall policies of the host government.
The scholars are on consensus that the destinations with strong, positive images are more likely to be considered and chosen in the destination selection process. In contrast, they argue that the perceptions held by visitors about potential crisis in the tourist destination have significant influences upon the tourism demand. However, there exist little if any, clearly defined conceptual base for destination image studies, especially the ones investigating causality between destination image and negative events. Seddighi and his colleagues (2000) developed a framework for the examination of perceived impact of political instability on tourism. As illustrated in figure 1.5 a synthesis of information flow which comes from the above mentioned elements of destination image creation (i.e., word of mouth, media, and government policies) is account for the perceptions of potential travellers. This information is in turn manipulated by Prospective Holidaymakers and Tourism Generating Region through a process of ‘the determination of the perceptual pattern/image for a particular tourism destination.’ The destination choice therefore is reliant on the extent to which the perceptual patterns of holidaymakers towards the destination are positive or negative.
Figure 1.5 Perceived impact of political instability on tourism
Source: Seddighi et al., (2000 ), p.182
Since the tourists do not spare time to check the reality behind the received images, these images become highly biased and distorted. Due to frequent hostilities that have originated from the Arab-Israeli conflict, Israel’s high-risk tourism image has prevailed. The struggle to reverse this image has been extremely frustrating, involving simultaneous confrontation between government agencies, tourism operators, and the media.
Almost no researches disagree on that intensive mass media coverage of security incidents results in the drop of tourists’ arrivals in affected destinations (Mansfeld and Pizam, 2006:17). They widely accepted that it is the media that give the event more or less significance by different interpretation. Therefore in many cases the news media tends to distort the actual security situation and to exaggerate the risk involved in traveling to affected destinations. In addition, the media reports often is not merely limited to exact report of what happened but also act as an advisor by interpreting the risk involved i