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Tourism Economics


The vast majority of households in developed economies share three economic features:

  • they have more money than they need for their subsistence,
  • they dispose of more time than they need for earning their living,
  • and they have access to more space than they need for being.

Individuals therefore use part of their resources (time and money) for recreation at home or away, i.e. in a different place. The course starts providing an analytical framework for the tourism experience, distinguishing the phases "get there", "stay there" and "live there". We then proceed to look at the demand and supply side of tourism from a microeconomic perspective and proceed to consider integrators and destinations as players on the tourism market. In a second part the course takes a macroeconomic perspective discussing issues like tourism and regional development, trade and globalization and tourism impacts.
While the course offers also an introduction to basic analytical tools of economics, students without a background in economics are expected to do additional self-studies based on books indicated below. In addition to the two textbooks background material will be provided during classes.
Two useful books are Stabler et al, Tribe and Candela/Figini, where Tribe provides many of the basic analytical tools and applies them to tourism. Including extensive Q&A and exercise sections, the book is ideal for self-learning and essential for students without a bachelor degree in economics. Stabler et al. is slightly more advanced applying economic concepts to tourism assuming some basic knowledge of economics. This book will be used as the principal text for course and exam. Candela & Figini is the best textbook at this moment, but relatively formal.

Stabler, Mike J., Andreas Papatheodorou and Thea Sinclair (2010, 2nd ed.) The Economics of Tourism; Routledge.

Tribe, John (2011, 4th ed.) The Economics of Recreation, Leisure and Tourism; Butterworth&Heineman, Elsevier

Candela, Guido and Paolo Figini (2012) The Economics of Tourism Destinations, Springer



Maggi R.

Course director

Additional information

Academic year
Master of Arts in Economics and Communication in International Tourism, Core course, Fundamental knowledges, 1st year