Perceptions of tourism promotion and business challenges: A survey-based comparison of tourism businesses and promotion organizations Academic Article uri icon


  • Tourism is an important economic development driver in the U.S. especially in rural areas. Most US regions have tourism-related economic development organizations to assist the local industry. Despite such assistance, however, many tourism-based businesses struggle. One possible reason is a disconnect between business needs and the activities of related organizations. This study uses survey data from tourism-based businesses and tourism promotion and economic development organizations in rural western Pennsylvania and West Virginia to compare how the various actors perceive the most pressing tourism promotion efforts and business challenges. In general, tourism businesses and support organizations agree on the promotional needs of tourism-based businesses and hold similar perceptions about industry problems. However, tourism promotion agencies underestimate the role of the internet in promotions and perceive workforce issues differently than do businesses. Better alignment of priorities within tourism partnerships should enhance promotional and educational efforts as well as the integration of tourism into overall economic development efforts. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

published proceedings

  • Tourism Management

author list (cited authors)

  • Dudensing, R. M., Hughes, D. W., & Shields, M

citation count

  • 9

complete list of authors

  • Dudensing, Rebekka M||Hughes, David W||Shields, Martin

publication date

  • December 2011