Cultural Institutes as Social Anchors: Implications for Tourism and Hospitality Planning and Development
Faculty of Business and Law
School of Business
In referring to social anchor theory, this study investigates the role an Italian cultural institute plays among its members, including in representing Italy's cultural, tourism, and culinary image. A total of 285 members of Sydney's Italian Institute of Culture, including 113 not of Italian background, were studied concerning their travel and culinary images of Italy, as well as their involvement with Italian culture in different forms. The findings demonstrate that by maintaining a physical presence, cultural institutes can fulfill the role of social anchors, serving as a vehicle for members to share common cultural interests. Indeed, the importance of these institutions is emphasized through their contribution in raising cultural awareness that extends to members' involvement in some of the pillars of Italian culture, including its culinary traditions. Thus, in nurturing interest and enthusiasm among members, cultural institutes can significantly contribute towards travel and food and culinary tourism development.