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Stefanie Steinbeck Title : Representation and inclusion of children's voices in tourism research: A problematizing literature review of tourism heritage and museum research

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11:30 AM, domingo 20 jun 2021 (1 hour)
Representation and inclusion of children's voices in tourism research: A problematizing literature review of tourism heritage and museum research


Stefanie Steinbeck

The Convention on the Rights of the Child stipulates that ‘respect for the young child’s agency - as a participant in family, community and society - is frequently overlooked, or rejected as inappropriate on the grounds of age and immaturity’ (United Nations, 2005, art.14). It further notes that as ‘holders of rights, even the youngest children are entitled to express their views, which should be “given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child”’ (United Nations, 2005, art. 12.1). Despite this, several scholars in tourism and heritage studies have highlighted a critical gap in tourism literature, where there continues to be a lack of children’s voices (Dockett, Main and Kelly, 2011; Poria and Dallen, 2014; Khoo-Lattimore, 2015). This lack of representation and inclusion leads to the inability to provide an intersectional understanding of tourism experiences in general and museum experiences more specifically. Adding to this conversation, this paper critically reviews key literature on children’s museum experiences, within the fields of tourism, museum and heritage studies. Specifically it explores how children are represented and included in the research. Are they active participants in the data gathering, passive advisors or potentially even non-existent participants in research that relates to them? Using a problematizing methodology, the review attempts to identify, articulate, and challenge different types of assumptions underlying existing literature relating to children’s museum experiences. Based on this it tries to formulate research questions that may facilitate the development of more interesting and influential theories and conceptualisations for this area of research. More specifically, it questions what could happen if we reconceptualise and critically reflect on how we as tourism and heritage scholars write about children’s tourism experiences.

References Dockett, Sue, Sarah Main, and Lynda Kelly. (2011) "Consulting young children: Experiences from a museum." Visitor Studies 14, no. 1 (13-33. Khoo-Lattimore, Catheryn. (2015) "Kids on board: Methodological challenges, concerns and clarifications when including young children's voices in tourism research." Current Issues in Tourism 18, no. 9845-858. Poria, Yaniv, and Dallen J. Timothy. (2014) "Where are the children in tourism research?." Annals of Tourism Research 47): 93-95. United Nations. (2005). Convention on the rights of the child: General Comment No.7. Implementing child rights in early childhood. Geneva

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