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An investigation of whether Hong Kong residents’ social identity affects their attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists

Priestley, Jamie (2018) An investigation of whether Hong Kong residents’ social identity affects their attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists. Masters thesis, University of Huddersfield.

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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to examine if Hong Kong residents’ social identity affects their attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists. Thus, understanding how the role of social identity amongst residents is vital for sustainable tourism development. Mainland Chinese tourists are vital to Hong Kong’s tourism industry as they are the largest source of visitors. However, due to the growing political influence of Mainland China and the influx of Mainland Chinese tourists, the city of Hong Kong is losing its identity and uniqueness. From this, many Hong Kong residents have little sense of social/national identity as they are sceptical of belonging to a nation.

The literature review presents three key areas of study: sustainable tourism development, resident’s attitude towards tourism development, and social identity. The literature finds that the dimensions of environmental integrity, economic prosperity, and sociocultural impacts are all vital to the success of Hong Kong’s sustainable tourism development. Also, the intrinsic, extrinsic and sociodemographic factors could influence Hong Kong resident’s attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists. Furthermore, the role of social identity delves into in-group and out-group identities between Hong Kong residents and Mainland Chinese tourists. As well as how perceived cultural distance affects Hong Kong resident’s attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists.

The study adopts a qualitative research approach alongside a phenomenological methodology to understand and interpret individual experiences as a source of qualitative evidence. To gather the qualitative data, the study used semi-structured interviews with open-ended questions. Furthermore, a qualitative coding strategy was implemented within the study’s interviews to highlight key themes of study including: sustainable tourism development, resident’s attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists, social identity and perceived cultural distance. Overall, a total of 12 in-depth interviews were gathered for qualitative analysis using the snowball sampling technique.

Overall, the study sheds light on whether Hong Kong resident’s social identity affects their attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists. Many Hong Kong resident’s recognised the economic prosperity of Mainland Chinese tourists. However, there exist growing concerns of sustainable tourism development in Hong Kong, with aspects of sociocultural interaction as well as the urban and rural environments. Also, it was found that Hong Kong residents who identified themselves as ‘Hong Kongese’ were more likely to have a negative attitude towards Mainland Chinese tourists compared to those who identified themselves as Chinese. With perceived cultural distance being an actual source of social identity depending on Hong Kong residents’ acceptance of Chinese culture.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Schools: Huddersfield Business School
Depositing User: Andrew Strike
Date Deposited: 04 Sep 2018 12:14
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2019 16:45
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/34667

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