• Augmented reality application for visitor experiences in nature based tourism

      Azizul, Hassan; Ramkissoon, Haywantee; University of Derby; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (CABI, 2021-03)
      There is evidence that the application of Augmented Reality (AR) supports posi-tive visitor experience. As an innovative technology, AR superimposes computer gen-erated imagery on the real world view and continues to attract the attention of re-searchers and practitioners. It is yet underexplored in the nature tourism context, call-ing for more research in the field. The aim of this chapter is to outline the impacts of AR in nature-based tourism. We use the Sundarbans in Bangladesh as a case to il-lustrate the application of AR in a nature-based setting. Data and information were generated both from the relevant literature and in-depth interviews. The respondents were general visitors, tourism service providers and government officials. Respond-ents were selected by purposive sampling and the interviews were audio-recorded and then self-transcribed. A number of tourism service providers were assertive in capitalising the existing lacks in the Sundarbans in terms of business development. The government officials appeared having concerns about diverse issues but were positive in the application of an innovative technology. This study concludes that the application of AR can possibly generate competitive advantages in a nature-based tourism context. AR is proposed as a tool to assist with sustainability initiatives to pro-tect the Sundarban’s resources and provide optimum visitor satisfaction.
    • Beauty and elegance: value co-creation in cosmetic surgery tourism

      Majeed, Salman; Zhou, Zhimin; Ramkissoon, Haywantee; University of Derby; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (SAGE Publications, 2020-06-16)
      This study presents an emerging trend in medical tourism, cosmetic surgery tourism (CST). We explore tourists’ perceptions of CST for medical service quality as an antecedent to tourists’ emotional attachment, trust, and intentions to visit, which is underexplored in CST. This study examines the mediating role of value co-creation in influencing behaviors of CST-seeking tourists to experience a better quality of life. Using a sample drawn from 279 tourists, comprised of Australian, Japanese, and Chinese nationalities at two international airports in China, findings show that perceived medical service quality positively influences tourists’ emotional attachment, trust, and intentions to visit directly and through the mediating role of value co-creation across the three nationalities. CST-seeking tourists’ inputs in value co-creation may positively influence their behaviors, which are vital antecedents to promoting CST business. Implications for future research are discussed.
    • COVID-19 place confinement, pro-social, pro-environmental behaviors, and residents’ wellbeing: a new conceptual framework

      Ramkissoon, Haywantee; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; University of Derby; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (Frontiers, 2020-09-01)
      Residents’ wellbeing in the present COVID-19 global health crisis requires a deeper understanding to determine appropriate management strategies to promote sustainable behaviors and contribute to human and planetary health. Residents’ behavior can have a profound influence in contributing to personal and global community’s health by responding effectively to emergency strategies in disease outbreaks such as the Coronavirus. It is evident that an understanding of residents’ behavior(s) pre COVID-19 across fields have relied on over-simplistic models, many of which will need to be revisited. Our interaction with people and nature while respecting social distancing has profound positive impacts on our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. The current health pandemic has called that people be confined in their homes across many nations as a means to control the spread of the virus and save lives. This calls for research exploring the mechanisms; this paper develops and proposes a conceptual framework suggesting that place confinement promotes pro-social and household pro-environmental behaviors which could become habitual and contribute further to our people’s and our planet’s health. Some evidence shows that human connectedness to place may contribute to engagement in desirable behaviors. Interaction with other members of the household can help create meanings leading to collective actions promoting psychological wellbeing. Promoting hygienic behaviors in the household (frequent hand washing) while at the same time being conscious not to keep the water flowing when not required would contribute to a range of benefits (health, financial, biospheric, altruistic) and promote wellbeing. Engaging in pro-social behaviors may result in positive effects on psychological wellbeing, reducing mental distress giving rise to a sense of attachment and belongingness, trust and overall life satisfaction. Engaging people in low-effort pro-environmental behavior to maintain some levels of physical activity and biological harmony with natural environmental settings (e.g. gardening) may help reduce anxiety and distress. This is the first study exploring the interplay of relationships between place confinement, pro-social behavior, household pro-environmental behaviors, place attachment as a multi-dimensional construct and presenting their relationships to residents’ wellbeing. Behavioral change interventions are proposed to promote lifestyle change for people’s wellbeing and broader societal benefits.
    • Employing a value-belief-norm framework to gauge Carthage residents’ intentions to support sustainable cultural heritage tourism

      Megeihi, Huda El; Woosnam, Kyle Maurice; Ribeiro, Manuel Alector; Ramkissoon, Haywantee; Denley, Tara Joyce; University of derby, UK; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; Monash University, Australia; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (Routledge, 2020-03-16)
      In light of the recent conflicts in Carthage over land use, Cultural heritage preservation, and sustainable tourism, this work utilized a value-belief-norm (VBN) theoretical framework to consider psychological antecedents of residents’ behavioral intentions to support Cultural heritage tourism. As such, personal values, cultural worldview, awareness of consequences, ascription of responsibility, and subjective norms were considered antecedents of intentions to support Cultural heritage tourism. Data were collected from 475 Carthage residents in nine neighborhoods adjacent to UNESCO World Heritage Sites using an on-site self-administered questionnaire. The proposed model was assessed through confirmatory factor analysis (to demonstrate sound psychometric properties across all 11 factors within the model), followed by structural equation modelling. Overall, 15 of the 19 proposed hypotheses were supported, ultimately contributing to 28% of the variance explained in residents’ behavioral intentions to support Cultural heritage tourism. This work not only provides support for the utilization of the VBN model within the context of cultural heritage tourism, it also deepens our understanding of the theoretical framework through the inclusion of the multi-dimensional construct cultural worldview.
    • Health, wellness and place attachment during and post health pandemics

      Ramkissoon, Haywantee; Majeed, Salman; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; University of Derby, Derby Business School; University of Johanneshburg, Johannesburg Business School, South Africa; Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, China (Frontiers, 2020-11-26)
      Therapeutic landscapes encapsulate healing and recovery notions in natural and built environmental settings. Tourists’ perceptions determine their decision making of health and wellness tourism consumption. Researchers struggle with the conceptualization of the term ‘therapeutic landscapes’ across disciplines. Drawing on extant literature searched in nine databases, this scoping review identifies different dimensions of therapeutic landscapes. Out of identified 178 literature sources, 124 met the inclusion criteria of identified keywords. We review the contribution and the potential of environmental psychology in understanding tourist behavior to promote health and wellness tourism destinations in a post COVID-19 context. We develop and propose conceptual framework comprising: (1) perceived goodness of therapeutic landscapes, (2) health and wellness consumption, (3) COVID-19 pandemic perceived health and wellness risk, (4) place attachment (5) re-visitation. We propose measurement scales, discuss implications and major issues in the immediate and post the COVID-19 pandemic to inform future research.
    • Local community support in tourism in Mauritius – ray of light by LUX*

      Ramkissoon, Haywantee; Sowamber, Vishnee; University of Derby, UK; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; Monash University, Australia; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (Routledge, 2020-11-30)
      Tourism development is said to be a priority sector for economic growth within Small Islands Developing States (SIDS), generating employment and foreign investment to these countries (Nunkoo & Ramkissoon, 2011a; b). SIDS also face fierce competition in maintaining their positioning competing with not only existing competitors but also with emerging destinations (Ramkissoon & Uysal, 2011; 2018; Seetaram & Joubert, 2018). Local communities have great expectations from the tourism industry as a source of employment, and they tend to be in support of tourism development in their country (Nunkoo & Ramkissoon, 2013). However, the local people also get impacted by adverse impacts from tourist activities including waste production, land use and depletion of resources (water, land, marine) (Kim, Uysal, & Sirgy, 2013; Ramkissoon & Durbarry, 2009). Further, local cultures might not always be well grasped by non-locals who work in the tourism sector. While many value diversity, some may tend to impose their own cultures at destinations if they are not well sensitized on respecting the local culture. An important remark in SIDS is that the employment salary provided to the locals is very often just enough for survival. It is a sector which operates 24/7, with work shifts comprising of odd hours, weekends, and public holidays. Tourism workers very often experience burnout if they do not have a manager who fuels them with motivation (Andereck & Nyaupane, 2011). To be able to sustain growth, tourism operators need to ensure that they are creating adequate value within the local community and for this, the local residents’ participation is important (Hwang, Chi & Lee, 2013). The tourism sector has the opportunity to demonstrate sustainable development through implementation of initiatives which involves stakeholder engagement and participation (Byrd, Ca´rdenas, & Greenwood, 2008; Nunkoo & Ramkissoon, 2017). This chapter uses the Mauritian hotel group LUX* Resorts and Hotels as a case study and discusses the ‘Ray of Light’ social initiative as part of its sustainable tourism development strategy. It further discusses strategies practitioners and policy-makers need to consider to promote sustainability at their organizations embracing tourism as an instrument for positive change.
    • Potentials of tourism products and services in Bangladesh

      Hassan, Azizul; Ramkissoon, Haywantee; University of Derby, UK; UiT, The Arctic University of Norway; Monash University, Australia; University of Johannesburg, South Africa (Routledge, 2020-08-30)
      Exploring the potential for tourism development in Bangladesh, an emerging economy has important implications. It is important to have a clear and detailed knowledge of the tourism offerings in the country. However, there is a lack of available literature that analyses the potentials of tourism in Bangladesh. Thus, the aim of this research is to outline the tourism potentials of Bangladesh through the understanding of its tourism resources. This research is based on reviewing the available literature and online resources. Findings show that the potentials of tourism product and service offers in Bangladesh is subject to identification and priority analysis. An effective policy planning and implementation framework becomes relevant in this regard. This research reflects that the potentials of tourism development in Bangladesh can be capitalised with support of an effective set of policy implementation. The potentials of tourism products and services availability and supplies mostly rely on many different factors. Bangladesh as a tourist destination is required to redefine its products and services when the country will experience a sharp growth of domestic tourists mostly benefitting from the disposable income and the availability of leisure time.