Stelios Varvaressos

Tourism and Hospitality Management, TEI of Athens, Athens Greece

Sgouro Melisidou

Tourism and Hospitality Management, TEI of Athens, Athens Greece

Marios Sotiriadis

Department of Transport Economics, University of South Africa (UNISA), Logistics & Tourism, Pretoria, South Africa

Laloumis Athanasios

Tourism and Hospitality Management, Technological Educational Institute of Athens, Greece

Laloumis Dimitrios

Tourism and Hospitality Management, Technological Educational Institute of Athens, Greece




At nowadays, where the modernized economy based on networks, Max Weber’s theory about the organization as a rigid structure with fixed rules and procedures begins to decompose. In the rapidly changing world of e-commerce, companies must be much more protean and capable to transform simultaneously in order to conform in the new economic conditions. In this new fact, the systemic approach of Kaspar, where tourism consists an open, flexible and interactive system, obtain greater potential.

In the first part, we attempt to analyze Kaspar’s systemic approach and its implementation effectiveness in the Greek Tourism. This systemic approach refers to an open system model, as an open flexible structure that interacts with its environment. In this context, we present the operation of tourism enterprises and tourism destinations through their interactions with the environment, as designated by the systemic analysis of Kaspar, having as reference the Greek economic and tourism reality.

Competitiveness has become a central point of tourism policy. As tourism activity intensifies and competition increases, tourism policy focuses on improving competitiveness by creating a statutory framework to protect resources, and monitor, control and enhance quality and efficiency in the industry. Within this context, various organizations and academic researchers developed and suggested frameworks and models to enhance and assess tourism competitiveness. One of these models is the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index. Tourism indicators will be investigated to provide a measure of the past and current activity of Tourism in the Greek economy.

This paper aims to illustrate the importance of tourism as an economic activity and investigate the potential competitiveness effects of the Greek tourism destination, in the context where tourism is perceived as an open and interactive system.

Keywords: Kaspar’s systemic approach, Tourism Indicators, Competitiveness, Regional Development.


  1. 1. Introduction

The purposes of this article are: (i) to analyse the systemic approach of Kaspar and (ii) to identify and highlight the competitiveness of Greek tourism destination. In addition to, this paper attempts to relate the above purposes with the environments which constitute the open system of Kaspar. The study’s aim is addressed by applying the methodology of critical analysis.

In the first section Kaspar’s systemic approach is presented, highlighting the fact that tourism system is an interactive open system, where the economic, political, social, ecological, and technological environment influencing decisively tourism growth and development.

The next section deals with the strategic situation analysis of Greek tourism by presenting the performance of Greece over the last years according to the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI),and presenting the interventional strategies to demonstrate its competitive position.

The last part is devoted to prove that the most important benefits of considering tourism as an open system, are the growth of tourism enterprises and the regional development. Therefore, the competitiveness strategies of Greek tourism coincides with those of an open and interactive tourism system.


  1. 2. Analyzing the Tourism System structure by C. Kaspar

Tourism evolution coincides with the most widely accepted political, economic, social, environmental and technological dimension. This dimension refers to the structure of the tourism system, elaborated by C. Kaspar (1976), in an approach based on a systemic analysis (Varvaressos, 2013:50-53).

According to C. Kaspar, the tourism system is composed of two subsystems:

A) The subject of tourism, which activate the demand of tourist services (tourist-consumer)

B) The object of tourism. This subsystem includes three variables: the tourist resort, tourist enterprises, and tourism organizations.

These two subsystems are in a constant interaction and interdependence. Therefore, the tourist activity is structured in different sections that are mutually interdependent and form a structured and well-organized system. A systemic analysis of Tourism by C. Kaspar indicates that the tourism system is an open system, which is characterized in interdependence with the other systems above.

- The most important systems (environment) are:

- The economic environment (Economical)

- The political environment (Political)

- The social environment (Social)

- The technological environment (Technological)

- And the ecological environment (Ecological)

This integrated approach, which facilitates the understanding of the tourism phenomenon, considers as incentive the tourist-consumer. The tourism system determined and simultaneously influenced by the elements of its subsystems, (tourist enterprises), while simultaneously performed an interaction and connection of effects with the existing environment.

Figure 1: Kaspar’s Tourism System Structure Analysis