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E-PORTFOLIO: THOMAS MOSER Module 4: Destination Management Literature: Beritelli, P., & Laesser, C. (2011). Power dimensions and influence reputation in tourist destinations: Empirical evidence from a network of actors and stakeholders. Tourism Management, 32, pp. 1299-1309. Exercise 1: Discuss the key findings of the research and critically reflect and assess the research framework developed by Beritelli/Laesser. Where do you see the major strengths and possible drawbacks of the framework?

Introduction Planning and marketing are crucial ingredients in destination management. To ensure an effective development of destinations it is essential that all stakeholders are collaborating well together. Thus, it is necessary to understand the relations between the individual actors. In that sense the measurement of the actors' power and influence helps to identify different actors and stakeholder groups (Laplume, Sonpar, & Reginald, 2008). Key findings The research of Beritelli and Laesser on power dimensions and influence reputation tries to investigate how power is perceived in community-structured tourist destinations by different actors and individuals. Moreover, the study explores how power influences the references among the network actors to clarify different perception behavior among the individual stakeholders. The conducted literature

research

shows

that

the

influence

reputation is affected by four major determinants which are displayed in the following graph. Additionally, the authors distinguish between outdegree, the way how individuals see others, and indegree centralities, the way how individuals are perceived by others. With regard to this the others stated that actors and stakeholders of the same group see others in the same way as they are seen by the others. In addition to that, the influence reputation is more or less an attribution by other stakeholders. However, depending on the stakeholder groups, influence and power might be interpreted differently. Thus, the authors classified the individual actors in different stakeholder groups, such as "ski area/hotels", "internals", "externals" or the "whole network".

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The authors found out that the actors' knowledge and process power play an essential role for both the actors' reputation and also how the actors' influence is perceived by others. In other words, the more knowledge and experience an actor has, the more influential he or she is perceived by others. Other actors might seek these people's advice and are looking for their ideas. In addition to the abovementioned the literature research confirmed that influential actors get better opportunities in the communities, receive enhanced benefits, have more power and have a higher status. Thus, individual actors try to keep or achieve good reputation, that others perceive them as influential. Especially in smaller communities, where mostly nearly everybody knows each other personally, this matter of fact gains particular importance. Conclusion and critical reflection With this research Beritelli & Laesser add to the literature the understanding of how different actors and stakeholders within a destination's network perceive power and influence reputation. However, given the fact that this research was conduct in only one single destination it is not guaranteed that the research results have external validity. In other words, the reader does not get the information whether the findings are also relevant for other destinations or not. With regard to the four explored power determinants, no detailed differentiation was proceeded. For instance, it is not explained clear enough what the item "knowledge" was supposed to mean in the context of this research - either network-related knowledge or specialized knowledge. Moreover, the other three power dimensions require further research in greater depth.

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References Beritelli, P., & Laesser, C. (2011). Power dimensions and influence reputation in tourist destinations: Empirical evidence from a network of actors and stakeholders. Tourism Management, 32, pp. 1299-1309. Laplume, A., Sonpar, K., & Reginald, A. (2008). Stakeholder theory: Reviewing a theory that moves us. Journal of Management, 34(6), 1152-1189. Wolfinger, R. (1960). Reputation and reality in the study of "community power". American Sociological Review, 25(5), 636-644.

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Module 4: Destination Management