Heritage tourism stakeholder conflict: a case of a World Heritage Site in China

Yiping Li, Chammy Lau, Ping Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Different from the existing UNESCO World Heritage Site (hereafter WHS) studies that focused predominantly on heritage tourism development, this study attempts to analyze the situation on the basis of the WHS inscription process, to examine the intertwined relationship among different heritage tourism stakeholders. Despite the extensive research on the branding effects of WHSs on tourism development, studies on the WHS inscription process are rather insufficient. This study examines some key issues in the process of UNESCO WHS inscription of tulou, a type of China Folk House, and the subsequent tourism development. By using the stakeholder theory approach, the study focuses mainly on the evaluation of the integration and collaboration among various stakeholders in the tourism development. Findings suggest that WHS inscription is essentially regarded as a strategy to boost the local economy. Such economic valuation of WHS creates conflicts of interest among key stakeholders. At last, policy insights into the strategies are drawn to cope with the key issues hindering the effective protection of heritage assets and challenging sustainable development. A tailored community stakeholder framework is developed, which will offer a useful analytic tool for future studies in this line of research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-287
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Tourism and Cultural Change
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2020


  • China
  • heritage tourism
  • stakeholder theory
  • tulou
  • World Heritage Site


Dive into the research topics of 'Heritage tourism stakeholder conflict: a case of a World Heritage Site in China'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this