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Collective Production of Public Goods in Online Travel Communities

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This study examines the conditions under which the collective production of public goods would likely happen and be sustained in an online tourism community. This study develops a theoretic and empirical model to incorporate social capital and technological factors of success in order to promote the collective production of public goods. This research explored both organizational and technological aspects of two online travel communities producing freely available accommodation and travel information in a collective manner. The study finding argues that conditions that facilitate and increase the capacity of social capital in online travel communities permits better understanding of the mechanisms of creating and sustaining public goods through online travel communities. It should, thus, enable a more refined model to explain how online users are retained and actively engage in online travel communities. Collective action theory, social capital, grounded theory, exchange theory, and generalized reciprocity theory are examined in this research.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-12-01

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  • Information Technology & Tourism is the first scientific journal dealing with the exciting relationship between information technology and tourism. Information and communication systems embedded in a global net have profound influence on the tourism and travel industry. Reservation systems, distributed multimedia systems, highly mobile working places, electronic markets, and the dominant position of tourism applications in the Internet are noticeable results of this development. And the tourism industry poses several challenges to the IT field and its methodologies.
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