Decent work in traditional tourism destinations: tourism Agenda 2030 perspective article
PURPOSE Discussing tendencies and shortcomings in the current debate on promoting decent work in hospitality and tourism, this study aims to respond to recent calls for progress on improving employee well-being. It proposes elements of a productivity-based strategy embedded in a circular dynamic linking productivity, service quality, profitability and job quality to enhance tourism employees’ well-being in view of achieving Sustainable Development Goal 8 on decent work. DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH Drawing on recent empirical work on gift exchange theory, this viewpoint article presents a possible scenario that should stimulate debate among scholars and local policymakers of how decent work and quality of life can be achieved in traditional tourism destinations. This would fill a gap in the current debate, which focuses on quantitatively marginal alternative forms of tourism, to overcome problems inherent to growth-based tourism. FINDINGS This contribution proposes a productivity-based development strategy supported by an incentive regulation policy targeting employers who provide tourist services in mass tourism destinations, promoting job quality to raise productivity and enhance service quality and in the end profitability. ORIGINALITY/VALUE This short article proposes a new perspective on promoting decent work in traditional tourism destinations based on gift exchange theory and discusses the scope for research essential to support a development based on the scenario described by a circular model.
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Tourism, Employees, Decent work, Well-being, Gift exchange theory, Sustainable development goals, SDGs