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The role of geography in the success of the balearic tourism industry

  • Cirer-Costa, Joan Carles

A really large tourist destination, such as the Balearic Islands cannot be defined as a single geographic space without regional differentiation; it spans several islands within each of which are a multiplicity of coastal areas with very varied geographical morphology and differing degrees of exploitation for tourism. We aim to conduct a statistical analysis of the standard features of such coastal areas to determine the geographic base common to the entire Balearic archipelago as a mass tourist destination. Our analysis is based on the different theoretical concepts of a destination as they appear in tourist literature: A geographically defined area, a group consumption brand name, a location defined by a concrete offer, and so on, and the industrial district concept as initially proposed by Marshall and later developed by authors, such as Krugman and Becattini. We set out to conduct a fundamentally quantitative analysis for which purpose we established a database containing 41 categories of geographical, commercial and business data for each of the 82 Balearic tourist areas. This information is integrated into a statistically homogenous set of values that enables the application of the Agglomerative Hierarchical Clustering (AHC) statistical method. The results obtained show that the islands of Menorca and Formentera constitute minor products in clear contrast with the major destinations of Mallorca and Ibiza. The latter two have developed a model composed of a pattern of large areas that are virtually indistinguishable from each other. Each zone can accommodate almost every kind of tourist wishing to visit the Balearic Islands, regardless of nationality, family status or economic level. A final result indicates that the large local hoteliers have developed a very special trading model: Targeting a specific niche of tourist demand while offering a wide geographical distribution of their establishments.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 47701.

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Date of creation: 19 Jun 2013
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:47701
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  1. Börje Johansson & John Quigley, 2003. "Agglomeration and networks in spatial economies," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 83(1), pages 165-176, October.
  2. Fujita, Masahisa & Krugman, Paul, 1995. "When is the economy monocentric?: von Thunen and Chamberlin unified," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 505-528, August.
  3. Michael Beenstock & Daniel Felsenstein, 2010. "Marshallian theory of regional agglomeration," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 89(1), pages 155-172, 03.
  4. Giulio Cainelli & Donato Iacobucci, 2011. "Agglomeration, related variety and vertical integration," Openloc Working Papers 1104, Public policies and local development.
  5. Jens Suedekum, 2006. "Agglomeration And Regional Costs Of Living," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(3), pages 529-543.
  6. Matthew L. Freedman & Renáta Kosová, 2012. "Agglomeration, product heterogeneity and firm entry," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(3), pages 601-626, May.
  7. Francesco Capone, 2007. "Mapping and Analysing Creative Systems in Italy (1991–2001)," Chapters, in: Creative Cities, Cultural Clusters and Local Economic Development, chapter 14 Edward Elgar.
  8. Cirer-Costa, Joan Carles, 2012. "Bases del proceso de internacionalización de las cadenas hoteleras de las Islas Baleares
    [Bases of the globalisation of the hotel chains of the Balearic Islands]
    ," MPRA Paper 37210, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Byong-Duk Rhee, 1996. "Consumer Heterogeneity and Strategic Quality Decisions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(2), pages 157-172, February.
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