Analysis of Factors Affecting Tourism Development in Khorramabad County by Structural Analysis Method

Document Type : Research Article


Department of Urban Planning and Design, Faculty of Arts and Architecture, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran


Nowadays, the tourism industry is recognized as a leading sector and driving force for the development of most societies. Optimal planning and development of this sector requires sufficient knowledge and understanding of the issues and factors affecting this industry's development and its future changes. This study aims to identify the factors affecting tourism development with a structural analysis method in Khorramabad County. In terms of purpose, the present study is practical, and its nature is analytical-exploratory with future study approaches. Also, the data collection was in the form of documents and fields. The statistical population of this study was experts and specialists, and 14 people were selected by snowball sampling method. The structural analysis method and Micmac software have been used to analyze the data obtained from the questionnaire of experts and specialists. The results show that among the 37 identified factors, 12 key factors had a more significant impact on tourism development in Khorramabad County, which should be considered in the planning and development of the tourism industry of this county. These factors include hospitality culture, training of experts in the field of tourism, tourism development policies, and plans, participation of citizens, expansion of tours and travel agencies, advertising and marketing expansion, entrepreneurship boom and business environment in tourism, private investment, competitiveness in attracting tourists, variety of tourist attractions and places, tourism branding, the amount of the annual budget allocated by the government in the tourism
Extended Abstract
Nowadays, tourism is known as a dynamic, relatively clean industry and an economic driver in the new age, which is considered a key factor for economic growth in the 21st century. Some tourist destinations have been able to gain a superior position in earning potential and actual incomes due to their natural, cultural and historical advantages and wise planning. Although tourism is one of the best options to achieve economic development, it is one of the most vulnerable industries in the face of crises. Therefore, considering the importance of the tourism industry in terms of economic development and the damage and stagnation it has suffered in the last few years due to the emergence of COVID-19, planning for it is very important. Future studies of tourism development provides an opportunity to reduce the complexity of planning in this industry by identifying key factors, and in this way, the planner can open a way to solve problems and develop tourism with control and management in the light of future studies.
Khorramabad county, despite its potential as a tourism area, is considered one of the fourth most deprived provinces in the country. Also, due to the spread of COVID-19 in the last few years, the tourism industry in this county has declined so that in the spring of 2021, the number of tourists in this county decreased drastically. All this highlights the importance of planning and restoring tourism in this destination to ultimately facilitate economic growth and improve the quality of life of the region's people. Therefore, according to the unfavorable conditions of tourism in the region, it is necessary to plan tourism with different management and according to the specific capacities of the destination with a view to the future. This kind of future-oriented planning leads to scientific, systematic, and logical decision-making concerning the potential of tourism development of this destination and determines what facilities and facilities tourism needs according to the location of the destination and what factors influence the expansion of tourism development. Therefore, this research aims to identify the key factors affecting the development of tourism in Khorramabad county with the method of structural analysis.
In terms of purpose, the present study is practical, and its nature is analytical-exploratory. Also, the data collection was in the form of documents and fields. The statistical population of this study was experts and specialists in the field of tourism and planning. The sampling method was done using a non-probability and purposeful method. The selection of qualified experts was done through the snowball sampling method so that a few experts were first selected and then asked to introduce other people. The statistical is 14 people, all aware of the county's tourism conditions. In order to analyze the data, Micmac software has been used to calculate the cross-impact matrix.
Results and discussion
In order to identify the most important indicators in tourism development in Khorramabad county, 37 indicators were first identified through the investigation of literature review, theoretical foundations, and with the help of experts, which include these sections as socio-cultural, tourist attractions, management and planning, environmental factors, infrastructural-service and economic-political. Then, 14 questionnaires were provided to the experts, whose output was analyzed through the structural analysis method and with the help of Micmac software. The distribution of variables affecting tourism development in the dispersion page indicates the system's instability, so five categories of variables (influential, two-dimensional, regulatory, impressible, and independent) can be identified. Based on the characteristics of each variable, influential variables (because they are the most influential indicators) and risk variables (because they have a great capacity to become key factors of the system) were selected as the most critical factors. Finally, based on the analysis, 12 main factors affecting the development of the tourism industry in Khorramabad county were obtained, which are hospitality culture and quality of hospitality services, training of experts in the field of tourism, tourism development policies and plans, and coordination between relevant institutions, participation of citizens, expansion of tours and travel agencies, advertising and marketing expansion, entrepreneurship boom and business environment in tourism, private investment, competitiveness in attracting tourists, variety of tourist attractions and places, tourism branding, the amount of the annual budget allocated by the government in tourism industry and infrastructure facilities.
Today, the tourism industry is a multidimensional and comprehensive industry that can influence many regional issues and cause growth and development. This research aims to identify the key factors affecting the future of tourism development in Khorramabad county with the structural analysis method. For this purpose, Micmac software was used to identify the key factors with the mentioned method. As mentioned earlier, this research has found 12 effective key factors for the growth and development of tourism in Khorramabad county, which should be included in the agenda of future planning. These factors have been proposed in various fields that can cause an all-round development, but realizing this requires coordination between all factors and their development and expansion. Therefore, achieving a favorable future requires the use of these factors, which should be taken into consideration by tourism planners, organizations, and institutions. Finally, research proposals derived from key tourism development factors were also presented. In order to achieve the goals of this research, there were some limitations, among which we can mention the extensiveness and time-consumingness of filling out the questionnaire (a 37*37 matrix), which led to a limited number of people willing to cooperate in this research.
There is no funding support.
Authors’ Contribution
The authors contributed equally to the conceptualization and writing of the article. All of the authors approved the content of the manuscript and agreed on all aspects of the work.
Conflict of Interest
The Authors declared no conflict of interest.
The authors appreciate to all the scientific consultants of this paper.


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