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The words tourism and terrorism exist at either end of a continuum of quality of life. The word tourism means living happily, enjoyment, and relaxation, while terrorism means feeling of death, destruction, fears and panics every where. According to Beirman (2003), “tourists are primary concerned with travelling to the destination satisfying their desires with minimum complications, threats to their safety and wellbeing “, while on the other hand Gilham (2001) said, “physical threat or serious disturbances to one’s plans are suffer to reduce the prospects of a tourist destination or tourist firm”. In past decade terrorism has very severe impacts on the travel and tourism industry than any other industry. The main reason of this may be because the basic objectives of the terrorist groups are to spread fear, as a result the basic safety and security of people threatened. According to Abraham Maslow (1943) the Hierarchy of needs, he said that human nature never satisfied when they have met their basic needs for safety and security. When they are able to satisfy their basic needs, then they attempt to satisfy their self actualisation needs such as better life, travel and tourism. According to Essner 2003), “the psychological impacts are enough to have severe impacts on tourism. The fear of terrorism is irrational, because in terrorist attack chances of being killed are very little and security environment has demonstrated its negative impacts on tourism in many top destinations around the world.
Three industries are dominated in 21st century, telecommunications, Information technology and tourism. According to World Tourism Organization 2008 report, tourism provides employment over 100 millions around the world. Tourism is an important economic sector for UK economy and according to BBC 2010 report; domestic and overseas visitors put an £115 billions a year in UK economy. The direct contribution in the UK economy was £52 billion in term of GDP which represent 4% of UK economy. Tourism also provides 1.36 million jobs in 2009 to UK workforce which is 4.4% of total work force. UK is the world’s sixth largest international tourism destination in term on number of tourists, but after September 11, 2001 and July 7, 2005 incidents this industry was badly affected. According to the LCCI (2005) report, it has been estimated that the fall in tourism could cost UK tourism industry over £300 millions.
In this competitive age, the business environment is changing dramatically. Terrorism is the biggest threat to tourism industry because travel is susceptible to the incidents of terrorism. When people travel they always avoid hazards, so for tourists safety is the major concern. During the past decade especially after September 11 2001, there are number of events which have had significant negative impacts on UK tourism. The correlation between terrorism and tourism is undeniable in the era due to industry strength and tourist places are the ideal target for terrorist to create large amount of economic and social disruption in the country. In UK terrorism can be seen in substantial part, as a result of this backlash to the tourism industry. There are number of definitions of terrorism, in the world of Alexander et al (1979) “terrorism is a threat or use of enforcement and inclemency to achieve a political goal by means of intimidation fear, and coercion”. In the present world context, the European Union (2001) define the terrorism relevant to international business in the following words. “Terrorist offences are certain criminal offences set out in a list comprised largely of serious offences against persons and property which, given their nature or context, may seriously damage a country or an international organisation where committed with the aim of: seriously intimidating a population; or unduly compelling a Government or international organisation to perform or abstain from performing any act; or seriously destabilizing or destroying the fundamental political, constitutional, economic or social structures of a country or an international organisation”.
According to U.S Department of state (2002), “terrorist select businesses (e.g. tourism places) for attack compare to other targets”. The most kind of attack is bomb blast, although armed attacks and kidnapping are also some kinds of terrorist attacks. According to Council of Foreign Relations (2002) reported “the majority of victims in terrorist attack are civilians”. The relatively large number of tourists may not prepare to face these kinds of terrorist attacks. However the scenario has changed as it was at the time of terrorist attack in 9/11. Kunreuther et al (2003) cited that during the days of terrorist attacks in 9/11 a common feeling came into mind of people that it could be me. But with the passage of time this may give way to may be it will not ‘me’ next time. This kind of behaviour is more common now a day in south Asia. But it is a common thinking that it is extremely easy for terrorist that to attack any where in the world. Even in low cost and low tech attacks, terrorists achieve to disrupt the tourism industry.
Terrorism has deep history science the cold war but this issue become most salient after terrorist attacks in September 11 2001. This incident affected the UK and international tourism industry in various ways. On one hand the world tourism industry was affected financially, the other hand it suffers due to legal and security issues. The international tourism industry between countries was most seriously affected due to security and safety concerns and legal issue. Especially UK, US and other developed countries were compulsion to protect their territory and people at any cost. Tourism industry in UK and USA found themselves floundering financially in the months after the terrorist attack on world Trade Centre, while rest of the world tourism industry also lost millions of dollars. According to U.S department of state (2002) more than 3000 people of different nationalities were killed in the terrorist attacks only in the United States in September 11, 2001. The attacks were the conspicuous example of terrorism on global level. According to the overview of European commission (2001) this was the one of the major event in the past decades which diversifies the viewpoint and outlook of people around the world. Terrorism affects both the long term and short term perspectives of the businesses around the world. Czinkota (2002) cited that terrorism influenced long term karma of entire industries, for example tourism, retailing and manufacturing industries.
After the September 11 terrorist attacks many international tourist destinations have badly affected legally because countries have introduced new laws for foreigner tourists e.g. strict visas requirements, security check and criminal record check etc. UK government also introduced strict immigration law for every one who wishes to come UK for tourism in the effort to prevent further terrorist attacks. The new terrorist laws restricted the tourists for freely travel across the UK borders and require by security department to keep proper track of their activities. The anti terrorist laws have made very complicated for tourism industry to conduct its business activities across the international borders as a result many countries tourism industries have financially struggled. Another major issue that affect the international tourism industry is security and government have to invest huge amount of money to improve both internal and external security. The security is most important because terrorist target hot spots to achieve their targets.
There is not a vast existing literature which shows the relationship between terrorism and tourism management theories, and the lack of presence of research literature is absolutely visible on the relationship between terrorism and tourism management, which elaborates constructive techniques for tourism industry in the presence of phenomena of terrorism. Terrorism has capacity to create atmosphere of fear and can be intimidate industry in number of ways. This threat of terrorism attacks poses a continuous atmosphere of risk for the tourism around the world. This risk itself creates extension for treatment of risk in management theories. The majority of management literature theories adopt term ‘uncertainty’ as a factor of unpredictable environment which may influence the performance of firms in certain ways. The environment effected by terrorism also has a factor of unpredictability in it. This study is another attempt to research and investigates impacts of terrorism on the tourism industry in UK and we will also discuss different approaches for reducing and handling the terrorism threats.
Research aim and objective:
This aim of this research is to analyse and explore the effects of terrorism on tourism industry in the United Kingdom after September 11 2001. The second part of my research is to critically analyse and recommend the most appropriate strategies for tourism industry to deal with the terrorist threats or scrutinize the different strategic views to avoid and minimise the impact of terrorism on industry.
This research has the following individual objectives:
Critically analyse the impact of terrorism on individual organization and the whole market.
Evaluate the managerial performance in organizations, before, during and after the happening of the terrorist attacks and in uncertain environment.
What is terrorism and why terrorist target business?
What are the effects of terrorism on business?
How to development strategy for managers or adopt a better approaches to deal with above mentioned issues?
Abbreviation and terminology:
Uncertainty: specifically mean the unpredictable environment; it is unpredictable when next terrorist attack will occur.
Risk: mean threat; internal and external threat in business environment which may affect the productivity of organisation.
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