Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2019, Vol. 74 ›› Issue (2): 366-378.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201902012

• Culture and Tourism Geography • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Spatial spillover effects of ICT on tourism industry growth

WANG Longjie1(),ZENG Guojun1(),BI Doudou2   

  1. 1. School of Tourism Management, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
    2. School of Economics and Commerce, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, China
  • Received:2017-11-28 Online:2019-02-25 Published:2019-01-29
  • Supported by:
    UK Economic and Social Research Council, No.BH170896;National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41571129, No.41471106;Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China, No.WMYC 20181-025;Guangdong Provincial Science and Technology Project, No.2018A070712015


The development of information and communication technologies (ICT) is reconstructing and reshaping the relationships and inter-connections among different regions in the tourism industry. Existing research has shown that ICT plays a crucial role in the growth of the industry; however, scarce attention has been paid to the spatial spillover effects of ICT. As a result, it is hard to estimate accurately the influence of ICT on growth of tourism industry and the findings in that regard are not wholly convincing. Given the shortcomings mentioned above, the present study focuses on the interactive relationships among ICT infrastructure, ICT consumption and growth of tourism industry; there is a particular emphasis on the spatial spillover effects of ICT. We selected 31 provinces in China as our case region; our aim was to assess spatial differences and spatial clustering across the whole of Chinese mainland. Our data sources included China Statistical Yearbook and China Tourism Yearbook from 2001 to 2014. To determine the global spatial spillover effects of ICT on the growth of tourism industry, we employed the spatial panel Durbin model, using balanced panel data from 2001 to 2014. We obtained the following findings. First, the development of ICT and tourism industry shows a significant spatial agglomeration so that the conventional traditional models may be unable to accurately assess the related effects owing to ignorance of the spatial auto-correlation. Second, ICT infrastructure and ICT consumption have different effects on growth of the tourism industry. The development of ICT infrastructure alone is not certain to promote the growth of that industry, instead, unequal competition among different regions may produce Solow paradox. ICT consumption has both significant positive direct and spatial spillover effects on the growth of tourism industry. Third, capital input, labor input and tourism infrastructure are still important driving forces for industrial growth. However, with the transformative effects of ICT, the spatial spillover effects of capital and labor are insignificant; tourism resources, environment quality, proportion of the service industry, and tourism agglomeration have significant negative spillover effects, which leads to fierce competition among neighboring regions.

Key words: tourism, ICT, spatial spillover effects, industrial growth