The Role of Political Ideology in Influencing Tourism Development: The Case of the Wild Coast Region of the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa

  • Kofi Owusu Acheampong, Walter Sisulu
  • Published 2009

Abstract

The tourism sector has for decades played a significant role in the development of the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. The province has a rich combination of beautiful landscapes, flora and fauna, traditional industries and historical and cultural sites. The tourism sector has however experienced patterns of tourism development which could better be understood within the framework of political economy. This paper applies a political economy model based on the critical realist method. In using this method, the paper draws extensively from a 3-tiered ontology of social stratification based on the ideas of Roy Bhaskar. The real level in this model represents the realm of ideologies, policies and guidelines upon which actors take their concrete decisions. The processes taking place in this realm do undergo changes to reflect the power and views of those operating within this sphere. In this paper, the roles of the politicians and the public administrators in formulating policy frameworks for guiding the concrete actions of those in the tourism industry are presented as the key factors that we need to understand in order to grasp the nature of the processes at work in the transformation of the tourism sector. The paper argues that the political changes of 1994 have opened a new chapter in the development trajectory of the province. It is recommended that the current provincial administration therefore need to use the instrument of development planning to restructure the tourism sector to enable it to accelerate the rate of growth of the Eastern Cape economy. The paper maintains that this can be achieved, inter alia, by widening the opportunities for all sections of the provincial population to make their maximum contributions to the growth of the tourism sector. The thrust of this paper, therefore, is to demonstrate that the development of the

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Acheampong2009TheRO, title={The Role of Political Ideology in Influencing Tourism Development: The Case of the Wild Coast Region of the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa}, author={Kofi Owusu Acheampong and Walter Sisulu}, year={2009} }