Seeing Tourism Transformations in Europe Through Algorithmic, Techno-Political and City-Regional Lenses

Calzada, I. (2020), Seeing Tourism Transformations in Europe through Algorithmic, Techno-Political and City-Regional Lenses, In Transforming Tourism: Regional Perspectives on a Global Phenomenon. ISBN: 978-90-826321-0-1. doi:10.13140/RG.2.2.33522.45769/1.

14 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2021

See all articles by Igor Calzada

Igor Calzada

University of Oxford, Future of Cities Programme & Urban Transformations ESRC portfolio, COMPAS; Cardiff University, WISERD (Wales Institute for Social and Economic Research and Data)

Date Written: April 9, 2020

Abstract

In light of the recent ‘tourism-phobia’, there is a need to better understand how tourism could be transformed through new business and social models. Attempts have been made, for example, to identify which experimental tourism models would align with the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Nonetheless, research remains scant and the policy paradigm slightly out of date. With the pervasive proliferation of tourism services provided by big tech multinationals such as AirBnB and Uber and the rapid algorithmic disruption of the so-called “sharing economy” paradigm, several European cities and regions are seeking to mitigate the negative side-effects caused by “platform capitalism” in their neighborhoods and local communities. These side-effects include gentrification, privatization of public space, inherent conflicts between visitors/tourists and residents/locals, environmental damage, and precarious working conditions, among others. Thus, this paper explores why tourism in Europe requires new business and social models to neutralise this algorithmic disruption and modify the extractivist neoliberal logic in tourism to develop new, transformative, techno-political, bottom-up, and networked strategies stemming from the city-regional realm. Against the backdrop of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the EU that has recently taken effect on 25 May 2018, this paper argues that a new, transformative, tourism paradigm could emerge from the European political left. The push of the city-regional resurgence beyond established nation-states could enable grassroots and institutional tourism initiatives to take the lead and coordinate a political response to achieve further sustainable, equitable, and, ultimately, democratic technological sovereignty in diverse localities through Europe. In conclusion, this paper posits city-regional, bottom-up, and networked dynamics characterised by the GDPR as an opportunity to establish a new techno-political paradigm in tourism by overcoming data and algorithmic extractivist practices.

Keywords: tourism-phobia, GDPR, Urban Transformations, Techno-politics, Algorithmic Disruption, Tourism Extractivism, Sharing Economy, Platform Capitalism, Platform Co-operativisim, Technological Sovereignty, Big Data, Smart Cities, Artificial Intelligence, City-Regions, Europe, Tourism

JEL Classification: O35, O36, P25, P26, R58, Z3, Z30, Z31, Z32, Z33, Z38, Z39, Q01, P16, O33, L98, L26, J54

Suggested Citation

Calzada, Igor and Calzada, Igor, Seeing Tourism Transformations in Europe Through Algorithmic, Techno-Political and City-Regional Lenses (April 9, 2020). Calzada, I. (2020), Seeing Tourism Transformations in Europe through Algorithmic, Techno-Political and City-Regional Lenses, In Transforming Tourism: Regional Perspectives on a Global Phenomenon. ISBN: 978-90-826321-0-1. doi:10.13140/RG.2.2.33522.45769/1., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3312803

Igor Calzada (Contact Author)

Cardiff University, WISERD (Wales Institute for Social and Economic Research and Data) ( email )

The Glamorgan Building
King Edward VII Avenue
Cardiff, Wales CF10 3WT
United Kingdom
07887661925 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://wiserd.ac.uk/about-us/people/igor-calzada

University of Oxford, Future of Cities Programme & Urban Transformations ESRC portfolio, COMPAS ( email )

58 Banbury Road
Oxford, OX2 6QS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.igorcalzada.com

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