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Exploration and implication of factors affecting e-tourism adoption in developing countries: a case of Nepal

Abstract

E-tourism plays a pivotal role in delivering services to tourists by enhancing travel experiences. While small tourism service providers in the developed economies can efficiently take advantage of e-tourism by partnering with global online platforms such as TripAdvisor or Booking.com, small tourism service providers in developing countries often struggle to reach global markets due to factors that are unique to the country they operate in. The aim of this study, therefore, is to identify the key barriers and motivators of e-tourism adoption for small and medium tourism enterprises (SMTEs) in developing countries. Nepal is selected as the case study due to its enormous tourism potential that is plagued by typical challenges. Based on the ‘Technology, Organization and Environment’ framework and ‘e-readiness’ model, this study identified ten key factors that affect e-tourism adoption by SMTEs in Nepal. A mixed-method approach, using interviews with seven key stakeholders and a survey with 198 SMTEs, were employed for data collection and validation of the proposed factors. Finally, an e-tourism adoption model highlighting the barriers and motivators for e-tourism by SMTEs is presented. This research found that e-tourism adoption by SMTEs in Nepal is affected by environmental factors related to national infrastructure, market size, country-specific contextual factors and organizational factors comprising e-tourism awareness, ICT resources, value proposition, and top management support. This study offers implications for policy and practice towards effective e-tourism adoption in other developing countries.

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Correspondence to Sojen Pradhan.

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Lama, S., Pradhan, S. & Shrestha, A. Exploration and implication of factors affecting e-tourism adoption in developing countries: a case of Nepal. Inf Technol Tourism 22, 5–32 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40558-019-00163-0

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Keywords

  • E-tourism
  • Technology adoption
  • Small and medium tourism enterprises (SMTEs)
  • Developing countries
  • Nepal