Socio-cultural Impact of Tourism


Positive socio-cultural impacts

*Boosting Australia's image overseas; lifting our international profile.
*Building Australia's goodwill.
*Greater cross cultural understanding and respect

Negative socio-cultural impacts


*Excessive drinking, smoking, alcoholism, gambling
*Increased underage drinking, smoking
*Crime, drugs, prostitution
*Increased customs infringements
*Language and cultural effects; damaging Australia's Aboriginal cultures.


http://www.coastlearn.org/tourism/why_socioimpacts.html


Sociocultural Costs


Commodification:
It is a act of modifying the culture and product of the origin to suits tourist demand/liking.
It will makes the original significance of the product or culture eroded.
Commodification will causes the qualities and meaning of the culture performances to erode because the tourism revenue has become even more important than providing quality and meaningful performances

There are 4 commodification processes which are;
*Phase 1- The authentic value of the product or culture are still preserved and share with tourist. Tourist would receive genuine artifacts at this phase.
*Phase 2- The authentic value of the product or culture are exchange for a small fee. Tourist would not receive free genuine artifacts but to pay a small fee to get at this phase. Phase 3- The authentic value of the product or culture start to deteriorate. Culture and product are modified to suit the tourist likings.
*Phase 4- The end of commodification process where the culture or product or totally change/modified to used for commercial purposes. This would means the originality of the product and culture are total loss.

Creating culture and heritage as a tourist attraction may also have its negative impacts. Commodification is the conversion of a destination’s culture due to the tourist’s demands and will have negative socio cultural impacts. This however can be seen as a positive impact due to the revenue generated from it. But nonetheless, as governments push for commodification of a particular culture, it becomes less important as the focus has crossed over to money, more than the actual heritage and culture itself. Due to this problem, it is possible that throughout time the culture will become ‘trivial’ in a sense that it is only ‘for show’ to tourists. With that, the tourists have some influence in changing and modifying that culture. Positive impacts include: revenue, remuneration for the ‘performers’ and other marketing opportunities to generate more revenue. Negative impacts include the loss of cultural identity and loss of traditional values and practices. (previously deleted post) An example of this is the Aboriginal culture being on display to the Australian public at tourist places around the CBD. This includes rock paintings, dancing, music, storytelling and etc. Although it brings awareness about the indigenous culture to others, it also opens up the problem in how their cultural identity is being loss due to the mass production and selling of its cultural ‘tools’. The souvenir selling of boomerangs, paintings and other things contribute to this, as markets mass sell these things for tourists. In addition, revenue from these sales may not be distributed directly to the aboriginal people, as there is evidence (rare cases) in the CBD of people from non aboriginal descent selling souvenirs such as didgeridoos for their own profit. Although this can generate finance, it lessens the cultural worth of the dance as it should be danced on particular areas. Hence, commodification remains a problem as it can lead to loss cultural identity, but also generate finances for the economy. (Sydney City Council, 2002)

Demonstration effect

This problem occurs when local residents adopt characteristics of wealthier tourists, such as desiring luxury goods, drugs and other culturally sensitive experiences. As a result tensions may result between the older and younger community members, as local culture and traditions are rejected by the young. (Weaver and Lawton, 2010)
It is not easy to isolate the specific demonstration effects of tourism, as television and other media may be the primary influence.
The demonstration effect also impacts the tourist themselves, as they may be influenced by the cultures they are visiting.
The demonstration effect can have beneficial outcomes, depending on what characteristics are adopted. Eg) Cooking methods of tourist.
Anti-demonstration effect: Conservatism may increase, as anti-western residents may come into contact with western tourists whom they dislike

The relationship between tourism and crime
*The relationship between tourism and crime
*Carrying and/ or wearing valuable or high standard objects such as cameras, diamond rings, expensive watch, etc could attract the attention of a thief and this would lead to the increase of crime.
*Tourists are unfamiliar with the places and sites and sometime might be cheated or taken advantages by the people living there. In addition, as tourists are not available with the area it is harder for them to report the crime because of things such as the language barrier.
*As tourists are on holidays, majority are having a good time and aren't thinking about their surroundings, thus resulting them to be less aware of potentially dangerous situations around the area.
*Tourists also have a higher chance to indirectly enter an unsafe areas/zones which might endanger them, or become lost on unfamiliar roads.

Tourism and prostitution (Sydney)

Prostitution is one of the socio-cultural impact of tourism in every countries as some tourist intentionally to specific countries for that purpose such as Thailand. In Sydney, it is happening in King's Cross which is the famous red light district of Sydney

Factors contributing to the increased likelihood of sociocultural costs.
*Extensive inequality in wealth between tourists and residents
*Cultural and behavioural differences between tourists and residents- race, way of clothing, speech etc.
*Overly intrusive or exclusive contact- Paradox of resentment, locals get annoyed at tourists whether they are dispersed or concentrated
*High proportion of tourists relative to local population
*Rapid growth of tourism
*Dependency of local economy on tourism (sale of souvenirs, stores located close to key tourist attractions)
*Different expectations with respect to authenticity - The tourist may expect a greater level of authenticity that is displayed or key locations of tourism are modified to give the illusion of authenticity

Resident reactions toward tourism
*To convert resistance such as sulking, grumbling, ridiculing, ignoring and obstructing
*Hiding for example scheduling of celebrations outside tourist season or hiding the certain cultural aspects
*Organising protests
*Aggression (form of violence)
*Fencing by fencing of private areas
*Ritual by means of reinvented or created new ones to confirm local identity
*Local resident may be forced or choose to move houses resulting in more aggression
*Tension among tourists and locals

The Community Based Tourism Industry


Tourism has a significant impact upon the community in which it occurs. Tourists, obviously, tend to spend their money at the destination- but the issue is not whether the tourists spend; but one of the distribution of the money. In one scenario, large foreign entities control and operate the industry which leaves the money flowing off-shore. The locals, in this scenario are likely to be employed in low-skilled/low-pay positions which means that while there are tourists, there is really no tourism industry to speak of. The other option is probably a better idea- by involving the government to create a complete tourism industry with goals and planned intervention- the money can remain within the borders of the state.

The Importance of Tourist-Resident Impacts
*loss of support for the authorities/ councils which promote tourism
*an unwillingness to work in the tourism industry
*lack of enthusiasm in promoting the tourism product by word of mouth
*hostility to the tourists themselves which can be manifested in over-charging, rudeness and indifference to the tourists' holiday experieces
*delays in the construction of tourism development because of community protests
Social Impacts of Sydney Olympics (2000)

Olympics was held at sydney in 2000 in which a lot of visitors come into sydney to participate and enjoy world's biggest events.Gordan Waitt from university of Wollogong reviewed social impact due the olympics in 2001. In this paper, the research is done by surveying over 24 months via telephone.



Gordon Waitt, 2001, “Social Impacts of Sydney Olympics” Annals of Tourism Research Tourism Research,Volume 30, Issue 1, January 2003, Pages 194-215 (Reference)