|• To examine debates concerning quantitative verses qualitative research methods and highlight why greater consideration of methodology is pertinent to the further advancement of qualitative tourism research.|
|• To discuss issues relating to the concept of inquiry paradigm and how this is inextricably linked to wider ontological, epistemological and methodological issues which underpin the research process.|
|• To highlight some of the emergent epistemological and methodological debates in tourism research.|
In Chapter 1, consideration of Denzin and Lincoln's (1998) framework on the evolution and development of qualitative research provided some indication of the range of issues yet to be explored by tourism researchers. Further, the review of tourism journals discussed in that chapter has served to illustrated that, to date, qualitative tourism studies have been predominantly located within Denzin and Lincoln's (1998) first two 'moments' ('traditional' and 'modernist'), with some evidence of third-moment studies ('blurred genre') emerging and discussions of fourth-('crisis in representation') and fifth-moment issues beginning to filter through to influence research practices.
Although tourism researchers have started to question the shortcomings of positivism and quantification on the grounds that they are not fully equipped to explore questions of meaning and understanding (e.g. Hollinshead 1996; Riley 1996; Walle 1997; Dann 1996), they have yet to expose themselves to the wider range of qualitative approaches which will enable them to begin to tackle issues around the authority of interpretation and access the multiple realities associated with lived experience. The recognition and incorporation of a variety of qualitative methods has