The 'reinvented' state in emerging industries: a comparison of tourism in Peru and Chile
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This dissertation contributes to the literature on the state, institutions and development in developing economies. Drawing from institutional and developmental state perspectives, I examine the way in which the state and its institutional character shape an important non-traditional growth sector across the Latin American continent in the contemporary period - tourism. The cases of Peru and Chile, where tourism has only become a particularly relevant economic activity since the 1990s, provide a comparative lens to explore how the state in conjunction with societal actors go about building new markets and local capacities in an emerging, but highly competitive, non-traditional niche in the global market. My empirical analysis assesses the two case-studies along four dimensions: (1) the evolution of Peruvian and Chilean tourism and state involvement therein from the 1970s-present; (2) the extent to which the state shapes the natural/cultural-historic resources important to each country’s tourism industry; (3) the role of sub-national government in tourism development, with focus on the regions of Cusco, Peru and Los Lagos, Chile; and (4) the influence of the organized private sector, and its relation with the state, on the productive potential of an emerging tourism sector. My methodological strategy combines various sources of qualitative and quantitative data derived from one year of fieldwork in Peru and Chile, principally (a) over 70 in-depth interviews with public and private sector tourism leaders and; (b) secondary sources, which include historical and current government documents and policy reports. The main findings of this dissertation show the complex and changing ways in which the state and particular elements of its institutional system matter in the mobilization of an emerging industry in the context of increasing globalization. Instead of prompting the demise of the state, the unfolding of neoliberal globalization in Peru and Chile has made state action (central and sub-national) more necessary as the private sector and civil society have struggled to seize new development opportunities such as tourism. How each state has responded to favorable tourism market trends, however, depends on a range of institutional factors (e.g. state-society relations, decentralization), which continue to shape national and local development processes in the context of accelerated globalization.