The role of trust in building rural tourism micro firm network engagement: A multi-case study

Felicity Kelliher, Leana Reinl, Thomas G. Johnson, Marion Joppe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examines the role of trust in building rural tourism micro firm network engagement in three case environments in Ireland, Canada and the USA. Researchers have rarely addressed the role of trust in tourism business relationships beyond acknowledging that it is a critical factor in network relationships/exchanges. This study contributes to the existing body of knowledge by exploring the content of member interactions and relationships that lead to trust in rural micro firm tourism networks using a relationship lens underpinned by social exchange theory. Applying a longitudinal interpretivist lens in each case, findings suggest that bonding, bridging and linking interactions have profound implications for rural tourism micro firms who may not have access to a larger social system of stakeholder relationships due to their relatively isolated location. The resultant framework offers insight into the generation of trust as an evolving asset in a rural tourism micro firm network setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalTourism Management
Volume68
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

Keywords

  • Micro firm
  • Rural tourism networks
  • Social exchange theory
  • Trust

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