Academic journal article Journal of Entrepreneurship Education

Acceptance of Tourism E-Entrepreneurship: Application to Educational Balearic Islands Context

Academic journal article Journal of Entrepreneurship Education

Acceptance of Tourism E-Entrepreneurship: Application to Educational Balearic Islands Context

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Information Technology (IT) is widely used to help companies to optimize their business processes and reach customer market segments. Nowadays, it is seen as a powerful tool for these companies to overcome their physical and managerial barriers. Advances in this technology allowed migration from the traditional economy to the rapid growth of new economy called Net economy (Matlay & Westhead, 2005). This later is interestingly based on digital technologies and the internet providing a global platform supporting interrelations between individuals/firms (King et al., 2002). Net economy is characterized by advent of innovative organisational forms (Matlay & Westhead, 2005) and development of a modern entrepreneurial form activity heralded e-entrepreneurship (Balachandran & Sakthivelan, 2013; Bennani & Oumlil, 2014).

E-entrepreneurship has been emerged from the synergies between the rapid IT advancement and the fundamental changing paradigms of economic transactions. It is centered on the creation of new businesses and the growth of existing ones inside a digital environment. Otherwise, e-entrepreneurship is the act of creating new companies based on IT (Matlay, 2004). Besides, e-entrepreneurship could be seen as a virtual process carrying out something new, with time, effort and financial, psychological and social risk to obtain economic growth, job creation and social welfare.

The massive usage of IT in tourism exerts a significant influence on various possibilities for developing innovative tourism business concepts based on IT. IT plays an indispensable role to make touristic companies successful toward uncertain and turbulent of their environment conditions (Deans & Kane, 1992). Furthermore, synergies between the wide spread of IT and fundamental changing of tourism environment led the rise of tourism e-entrepreneurship. This later has become one of the most critical activities for the development of the tourism sector. It describes the act of establishing new companies and it generates new job opportunities and multiple other economic benefits for this sector. Moreover IT leads to new businesses offering innovative products and services and eventually engenders to a significant contribution to the development of the tourism companies.

Referring to Steinberg (2003), maintaining a sustainable competitive advantage in the net economy supposes that future tourism entrepreneurs can no longer operate or be considered in isolation. In the sense of Humphreys & Brezillon (2002), e-entrepreneurship relies considerably upon collective learning and interdependent resources. Entrepreneurs should be prepared to adopt e-collaborative strategies to pursue their growth goals (Matlay & Westhead, 2007) and become more innovative. They should be more opened on ideas and knowledge coming from their customers, partners or competitors.

Tourism generates more than 45% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the Balearic Islands, the highest percentage in the country and the other autonomous communities in Spain. Its economic impact calculated in terms of Gross Value Added (GVA) or additional value to acquire goods and services to be transformed during the production process, is more than 11,360 million euros. Regarding travelers choosing Balearic Islands as destination, more than half of the displacements develop any of these processes online (50.9%) the highest among the destinations in Spain. However, according to the Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2014, the Balearic Islands are ranked as a modest innovator with an innovation performance below EU average. The industry in Balearic Islands does not reach 10% of the GDF, whilst the tertiary sector represents 80%. However, one the main sub H sectors/technology area in which Islas Baleares has a specific competitive advantage in the advanced manufacturing fields is IT (EU Commission, 2016). The new economic milieu and globalization have given rise to new demands for international competitiveness, increasing the importance of research, technological development and innovation, both regionally and nationally. …

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