Entrepreneurial risks-taking and responsibilities in the context of responsible tourism

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Understanding of business responsibilities has evolved greatly over the past few decades, leaving behind the former, aspirational Friedmanian view of ‘profit comes first’. In tourism, business responsibilities have added layers due to the complexity and peculiarities of the business of tourism, including its multitude of stakeholders, simultaneousness of consumption and production, and the informality and seasonality of tourism. Responsibilities are often associated to rights. This paper, however, juxtaposes business responsibilities with entrepreneurial risk-taking instead. This constitutes an original approach to understanding entrepreneurial role behaviour for responsible tourism. Risks here are seen as situations of uncertainty that bear monetary, functional, psychological and social risks. As such, a psychological-behavioural lens
is adopted for entrepreneurial risk-taking. Data was collected in 14 interviews with so called ‘responsible tourism entrepreneurs’, all of whom have been commended by their peers for their responsible business conduct. Methods from another field of psychology – Personal Construct Theory – are employed to elicit constructs about risks and responsibilities of responsible tourism entrepreneurs. This adds to the rigour of this research and underlines the adopted psychological-behavioural lens. The findings suggest that for responsible tourism entrepreneurs business responsibility is a combination of existential responsibility towards the betterment of society and repentance for sins (of the past and of others), whilst risks are mirrored in the mission and barriers within which their businesses operate. The significance of this research lies in
its theoretical contribution towards entrepreneurship theory within tourism academia and its practical implications for current and future responsible tourism entrepreneurs.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2 Oct 2015
Event24th Nordic Symposium for Hospitality and Tourism Research - Icelandic Tourism Research Centre, Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 1 Oct 20153 Oct 2015
Conference number: 24


Conference24th Nordic Symposium for Hospitality and Tourism Research
Abbreviated titleNORTHORS
Internet address


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