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13 JUN 2024 (THU) 16:35-17:05

How can co-creation be achieved by storytelling in Community-based Tourism (CBT) in Hong Kong? A case study of Kowloon City


Mr HO Ho Cheung

(Supervisor: Prof Benjamin L. Iaquinto)


Abstract:

As response to Hong Kong’s slow post-COVID tourism recovery, industry advocates are seeking new ways to attract visitors by focusing on cultural and heritage attractions. Yet, such a strategy remains threatened by massive urban redevelopment plans. This study focuses on Community-based Tourism (CBT) in Kowloon City, one of the region’s oldest districts. Kowloon City has numerous heritage and cultural attractions that could be the focus in CBT. CBT is a kind of alternative tourism that emphasizes the involvement and control of residents, equal benefits distribution and promotion of cultural sustainability. I examine the relationship between storytelling and ‘co-creation’ of CBT in Kowloon City in the maintenance of heritage and cultural attractions.

 

Based on a consumer-oriented ethnography, I observe the storytelling process which is at the core of tourists’ experience as guided tours and even tourist attractions are constructed by stories. Tourists, residents, guides, and service providers share their own stories while incorporating those of the others into their understanding during guided tours, workshops and travel writing etc. Previous studies revealed that tourists in historical guided tour combined stories told by guides and their prior experience to create understanding of the destination. Thus, co-creation can be achieved through exchange of skills and knowledge. To further understand the process, I compare the pre- and post-experience stories received by the tourists and explore the roles of tourists, guides, and residents to reveal the process and outcomes of co-creation in storytelling in CBT in Hong Kong’s Kowloon City. Preliminary results show external observation of co-creation opportunities, as well as internal transformation by co-creation between guides, participants and merchants.

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