Attitudes of local residents towards the development of tourism in Slovenia: The case of the Primorska, Dolenjska, Gorenjska and Ljubljana regions
This study focuses on the attitudes of local residents toward tourism development in some tourist areas in Slovenia. Based on the place attachment model, this paper seeks to propose an integral approach to management of the local residents’ attitudes towards tourism development. Research data were collected in the Primorska, Dolenjska, Gorenjska and Ljubljana regions. A PCA factor analysis and a hierarchical regression analysis were used to analyze the research data. The findings confirm the proposed hypothesis that attitudes of local residents toward a tourism development are influenced by place attachment, the perception of tourism impacts and by the perceived and desired type of tourism. One important contribution of this study to the understanding of the obstacles to tourism development is the finding that length of residency strongly influences the development process. It can be concluded that long-term residents are generally less favourable to tourism development. In contrast, perceived positive tourism impacts, cultural tourism, quality of tourism and leisure structure and quality of natural environment positively influence local residents’ perceptions of tourism development. The economic reasons for tourism development revealed by the attitudes of local residents are evident. In spite of that, local residents are deeply concerned about the quality of their life and for the quality of their environment. Managers and planners should be aware that tourism development activities could evoke strong emotional responses of some groups of local residents. To avoid conflicts, local residents should be actively involved in the decision making process
of tourism development.