New SMARTDEST Publication: Smart tourism city governance: exploring the impact on stakeholder networks

By Josep Ivars-Baidal, Ana B. Casado-Díaz, Sandra Navarro-Ruiz, Marc Fuster-Uguet (2023).

Building on new trends in tourism and smart city governance, this study aims to examine the degree of interrelation between stakeholder networks involved in tourism governance and smart city development. A model describing the transition towards smart tourism city governance is proposed.

The proposed model is tested through a multiple case study of seven European cities. This choice of sample makes the study highly representative. Data collection is based on an exhaustive search and analysis of available data on smart city initiatives, destination management organisations and tourism plans. Social network analysis using Gephi software is used to build stakeholder networks.

Analysis of the stakeholder networks that shape tourism governance and smart initiatives in several cities reveals a disconnection between the two types of networks. The results show limited progress towards the expected synergies of true smart tourism city governance.

Theoretically, the study contributes to the debate on new forms of governance for the complex evolution of urban tourism. In practice, the relationship between tourism governance and smart city initiatives needs to be redefined to achieve synergies that increase the inclusiveness and efficiency of urban tourism policies.

This study examines the under-researched topic of the interrelation between tourism governance and smart city initiatives. By comparing the networks of actors resulting from these two processes, it assesses the extent to which this interrelation helps the emergence of new governance models (smart tourism city governance).

The article is accessible at the following link.