Research Journal of Economics

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Creative Regions and Sustainable Tourism

Theories of regional inequalities often attribute poor economic performance to lack of natural, physical or human resources. The theory of creative economy elaborated by Richard Florida described the role of creative industries and creative people in the development of regions. Creative regions possess large proportions of educated people, of businesses in high-tech industries, a lively cultural life, rich historical legacy, and a pleasant environment. Many of these are true for attractive tourist destinations, where cultural richness and environmental appeals are abundant. This raises the question whether an outstanding tourism destination can possess the traits of a creative economy. The paper surveys the methodology designed to measure the level of creativity for any geographical unit, either a country, or a region, or a city. The quantification of creativity is based on indicators of talent, technology and tolerance, following Florida’s ideas. However, later studies offered different measures and included different components of creativity, covering culture and tourism-related indicators, too. Culture, technology, diversity, and quality of the natural environment with its ecosystem services are all taken into account when the success of creative economies is analysed. Common aspects of creative economies and tourism destinations are reviewed and compared, with special regard to issues of sustainability. Finally, future research directions are outlined.

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