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Gastrodiplomacy in Tourism: ‘Capturing Hearts and Minds through Stomachs


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1 Assistant Professor, Sol International Hospitality Management (SIHOM), Woosong University, Korea, Republic of
     

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Gastrodiplomacy, the strategic use of food as a powerful tool for achieving diplomatic goals, is linked well to tourism, and the concepts function symbiotically. Like soft power and cultural diplomacy, gastrodiplomacy is present through tourism which is catalysed by the country’s international diaspora, ethnic restaurants, and food festivals. Considering the mounting academic interest towards tourism in gastrodiplomacy, this paper examines the role of national tourism promotional campaigns as the most relevant, yet unaddressed channel for the articulation of a country’s gastrodiplomacy. The findings of this study confirm that, if used effectively, government-led tourism campaigns are significant as a collective venue in which to introduce, explain and promote a country’s national cuisine to foreign publics. This paper examines the pitfalls of India’s national tourism campaign in terms of its capability to communicate the country’s immense latent potential to tourists and recommends a strategic model for the future of Indian gastrodiplomacy.

Keywords

Incredible India, Content Analysis, Food Diplomacy, Soft Power.
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  • Gastrodiplomacy in Tourism: ‘Capturing Hearts and Minds through Stomachs

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Authors

Bipithalal Balakrishnan Nair
Assistant Professor, Sol International Hospitality Management (SIHOM), Woosong University, Korea, Republic of

Abstract


Gastrodiplomacy, the strategic use of food as a powerful tool for achieving diplomatic goals, is linked well to tourism, and the concepts function symbiotically. Like soft power and cultural diplomacy, gastrodiplomacy is present through tourism which is catalysed by the country’s international diaspora, ethnic restaurants, and food festivals. Considering the mounting academic interest towards tourism in gastrodiplomacy, this paper examines the role of national tourism promotional campaigns as the most relevant, yet unaddressed channel for the articulation of a country’s gastrodiplomacy. The findings of this study confirm that, if used effectively, government-led tourism campaigns are significant as a collective venue in which to introduce, explain and promote a country’s national cuisine to foreign publics. This paper examines the pitfalls of India’s national tourism campaign in terms of its capability to communicate the country’s immense latent potential to tourists and recommends a strategic model for the future of Indian gastrodiplomacy.

Keywords


Incredible India, Content Analysis, Food Diplomacy, Soft Power.