alexa A second generation climate index for tourism (CIT): specification and verification.
Business & Management

Business & Management

Journal of Tourism & Hospitality

Author(s): de Freitas CR, Scott D, McBoyle G

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Abstract Climate is a key resource for many types of tourism and as such can be measured and evaluated. An index approach is required for this task because of the multifaceted nature of weather and the complex ways that weather variables come together to give meaning to climate for tourism. Here we address the deficiencies of past indices by devising a theoretically sound and empirically tested method that integrates the various facets of climate and weather into a single index called the Climate Index for Tourism (CIT). CIT rates the climate resource for activities that are highly climate/weather sensitive, specifically, beach "sun, sea and sand" (3S) holidays. CIT integrates thermal (T), aesthetic (A) and physical (P) facets of weather, which are combined in a weather typology matrix to determine a climate satisfaction rating that ranges from very poor (1=unacceptable) to very good (7=optimal). Parameter A refers to sky condition and P to rain or high wind. T is the body-atmosphere energy balance that integrates the environmental and physiological thermal variables, such as solar heat load, heat loss by convection (wind) and by evaporation (sweating), longwave radiation exchange and metabolic heat (activity level). Rather than use T as a net energy (calorific) value, CIT requires that it be expressed as thermal sensation using the standard nine-point ASHRAE scale ("very hot" to "very cold"). In this way, any of the several body-atmosphere energy balance schemes available may be used, maximizing the flexibility of the index. A survey (N=331) was used to validate the initial CIT. Respondents were asked to rate nine thermal states (T) with different sky conditions (A). They were also asked to assess the impact of high winds or prolonged rain on the perceived quality of the overall weather condition. The data was analysed statistically to complete the weather typology matrix, which covered every possible combination of T, A and P. Conditions considered to be optimal (CIT class 6-7) for 3S tourism were those that were "slightly warm" with clear skies or scattered cloud (
  • DOI: 10.1007/s00484-007-0134-3
  • This article was published in Int J Biometeorol and referenced in Journal of Tourism & Hospitality

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