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Impact of clusters on exhibition destination attractiveness: Evidence from Mainland China


  • Jin, Xin
  • Weber, Karin
  • Bauer, Thomas


Clusters, as concentrations of businesses in particular localities, may explain the spatial distribution of exhibitions, and exhibition destination attractiveness (Rubalcaba-Bermejo & Cuadrado-Roura, 1995). Drawing on Porter’s (1998a) cluster theory in the context of the exhibition industry in Mainland China, this study tests and confirms the validity of this proposition. A mixed method approach was employed that involved in-depth interviews with 32 exhibitors and a survey of 616 exhibitors to 1) establish what constitutes ‘clusters’ in an exhibition context and develop appropriate measurements, and 2) assess to what extent ‘clusters’ contribute to exhibition destination attractiveness. The study developed measures for and confirmed two distinct cluster effects – ‘leadership of the host city in the industry’ and ‘host city as a source of exhibitors.’ Both cluster effects had a significant influence on exhibitors’ perceived destination attractiveness, with other destination factors being less important, in a marked contrast to convention destination attractiveness. Implications of the study results are discussed and directions for future research provided.

Suggested Citation

  • Jin, Xin & Weber, Karin & Bauer, Thomas, 2012. "Impact of clusters on exhibition destination attractiveness: Evidence from Mainland China," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1429-1439.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:touman:v:33:y:2012:i:6:p:1429-1439
    DOI: 10.1016/j.tourman.2012.01.005

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Xi Li & Runzhe Yu & Xinwei Su, 2021. "Environmental Beliefs and Pro-Environmental Behavioral Intention of an Environmentally Themed Exhibition Audience: The Mediation Role of Exhibition Attachment," SAGE Open, , vol. 11(2), pages 21582440211, June.
    3. Harald Bathelt & Gang Zeng, 2014. "The Development of Trade Fair Ecologies in China: Case Studies from Chengdu and Shanghai," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 46(3), pages 511-530, March.
    4. Alberca-Oliver, Pilar & Rodríguez-Oromendía, Ainhoa & Parte-Esteban, Laura, 2015. "Measuring the efficiency of trade shows: A Spanish case study," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 127-137.
    5. Nathalie MONTARGOT & Abdessamad OUCHEN, 2018. "L’IDH, la stabilité politique et l’absence de violence- terrorisme comme facteurs explicatifs de l’attractivité touristique : le cas du bassin méditerranéen," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 47, pages 63-80.
    6. Joseph Andria & Giacomo Tollo & Raffaele Pesenti, 2015. "Detection of local tourism systems by threshold accepting," Computational Management Science, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 559-575, October.
    7. Jin, Xin & Weber, Karin, 2013. "Developing and testing a model of exhibition brand preference: The exhibitors' perspective," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 94-104.
    8. Jing Li & Guangquan Dai & Jinwen Tang & Ying Chen, 2020. "Conceptualizing Festival Attractiveness and Its Impact on Festival Hosting Destination Loyalty: A Mixed Method Approach," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(8), pages 1-17, April.

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