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An Assessment of Residents’ Attitudes towards Tourism Development in Marshall County, West Virginia

Abstract
Abstract Marshall County, as is the case with many economically depressed communities, is looking to tourism as an alternative to stimulate the local economy. Since tourism’s success relies on hosts’ hospitality, understanding the residents’ attitudes towards tourism development is important. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to assess the attitudes of Marshall County, West Virginia residents towards tourism development. Data for the study were collected through a structured questionnaire administered through SurveyMonkey online tool. Attitudes were measured by a 5-point strongly disagree/strongly agree scale on a series of questions soliciting resident opinions on tourism development and its perceived impacts. Overall, the results showed overwhelming support for tourism. Residents have positive attitudes towards tourism development as they perceive it to be necessary for economic growth. Demographic characteristics including gender and age didn’t seem to have any significant effect on attitudes. However, several other factors were seen to significantly affect attitudes including: length of residency; role of resident in the community; resident perceptions on community preparedness; and perceived economic benefits.
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event
Date
2012-04-01
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