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Saturday, April 27 • 9:00am - 10:00am
2. The Construction of Perceived Authenticity in Ethnic Tourism

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The Construction of Perceived Authenticity in Ethnic Tourism
Olivia Lowrey
Faculty mentor: Catherine Cottrell
New College of Florida

Ethnic tourism instigates a reflexive relationship between tourists and host groups which blurs the lines between hospitality and economic exchange. Perceived authenticity, satisfaction, and amount paid for an experience positively correlate, contributing to host groups advertising images which cater to touristic perceptions of authenticity. This study expands understanding of consumer decision making by exploring the cognitive underpinnings of perceived authenticity in ethnic tourism using representativeness heuristics and prototype theory. 271 respondents from Amazon Mechanical Turk completed both a survey containing a description of an ethnic tourism experience which varied across four levels of prototypicality, and measures of perceived authenticity, satisfaction, and price. Analysis indicated that as hosts are presented closer to a cognitive prototype of an ethnic group, perceived authenticity increased. These results indicate that specific characteristics of host group representation influence tourist perceptions in ways that could have implications for host group autonomy over group image.

Olivia Lowrey is an economics and psychology student in her last semester at New College of Florida. Her research interests include behavioral economics and decision making from an interdisciplinary perspective. 


Saturday April 27, 2019 9:00am - 10:00am EDT
HSB 207