An Analysis of Tourism Development in China From Urbanization Perspective

Jian Ming Luo, Hanqin Qiu, Carey Goh, Dan Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


China has experienced rapid urbanization over recent decades. The tourism literature, however, has rarely explored this issue. This article examines the historical process of urbanization and tourism development, using time-series data of Guangdong Province in China for the period 1994–2010. Research results are based on a systematic analysis studying the relationship between tourism development and urbanization. Tourism development is measured by the total income generated by tourism. Urbanization has been operationalized by population, economic, geographic landscape, and sociocultural dimensions. This study suggests that urbanization, though generally increasing tourism development, does not affect all types of tourism development uniformly. The results show that urbanization is an important factor for domestic tourism development, but not for foreign tourism development in China. Therefore, policy-makers, while assessing the effect of urbanization on tourism development, should be cautioned on the different policy goals the province would want to achieve.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-44
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Quality Assurance in Hospitality and Tourism
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2016


  • China
  • Guangdong
  • tourism development
  • urbanization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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