Invited commentary: Tourism planning and traditional urban planning theory—the planner as an agent of social change

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


The field of urban and regional planning is much more comprehensive in both subject matter and outcomes than is most tourism planning, as least as each is taught in higher education around the world. Tourism planning, however, draws upon a good portion of urban and regional planning methods, especially in the area known as rational planning. As such, the more narrow area of tourism planning could be considered a subfield of urban and regional planning. One major shortcoming of tourism planning is an apparent lack of attention to the normative issues of (1) how planners should plan and (2) what issues planners should focus on in their planning efforts. These questions address the complexity of data and issues that planners deal with, including questions of what data or information is collected, how it is organized, and how the information will be used to make decisions. Tourism planners could benefit from greater familiarity with these fundamental concepts of planning theory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-391
Number of pages9
JournalLeisure/ Loisir
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2007



  • Planning theory
  • Tourism planning
  • Urban planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

Cite this