|dc.description.abstract||This thesis was initiated by the occurrence of the 2006 Hang Zhou World Leisure Expo. Hang Zhou is the author's home city, and thus the Expo was of interest, and from this interest came the idea of conducting research into residents' perceptions of the impacts of the 2006 Expo and the more general impacts of Hang Zhou's Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) policies. As in other Chinese cities, these policies are primarily determined by the Municipal Government with comparatively little reference to residents.
The researcher has found very little prior research into the subject of resident perceptions of MICE, even though, as described in the thesis, there has been increasing competition between cities as each seeks to build conference centres and attract business for those centres. Much of the literature reviewed was based on research into western cases, and in the final chapter reference is made to potential differences between China and the locations of this other research.
After a literature review, the author undertook a qualitative study by conducting interviews with 40 respondents to both elicit their views and determine items for a subsequent quantitative study based on self completed questionnaires. After 5 months, a sample of just over 400 usable responses had been collected. The design of the questionnaire permitted discriminant analysis to be used, and thus in addition to the use of t-tests and ANOVA, factor, cluster, regression and path analysis were all used.
Given the lack of previous research within China, the main focus of the research was descriptive and exploratory in nature, but the initial results permitted the development of a potential set of causal relationships that are summarised in the main text as Figure 4.3. This permitted a series of four propositions to be examined. It is to be noted that the term ‗proposition' is used rather than ‗hypothesis'. The latter term implies quantifiable relationships are thought to exist and that can be tested. The literature review reveals a deficiency generally about residents' perceptions of MICE and very specifically almost nothing about the Chinese situation, so at this stage it is proposed that a relationship between residents and MICE, but no specific hypothesis of quantifiable relationships exist to be tested.
Socio-demographic variables impact on perceptions of MICE at the city and personal level, and on evaluations of Hang Zhou's MICE policy. In this respect, generally, it was found that socio-
demographics were not discriminating variables, and only employment status and a past history of MICE attendance had some role of significance.
There will be differences between residents' perceptions of the impacts of MICE policies when asked to consider (a) impacts in Hang Zhou generally, and (b) impacts on personal daily life. This was found to be generally true, and generally respondents were supportive of MICE policies that generated benefits for the city as a whole even when they were either not affected personally, or those personal impacts such as traffic congestion, were negative.
There will exist differences in perceptions that can be caught in psychometric measurements that will enable different clusters to be discerned, whereby some will be supportive of MICE policies and others less so - such differences being determined by the evaluations of social and environmental costs as against economic gains. In short, there is an inherent tension between the economic, social and environmental within the current state of Hang Zhou as a developing city in a developing nation. This proved to be the case.
A history of past attendance at MICE will be a variable that shapes support for MICE development and evaluations of the MICE policy. This was partially supported.
While distinct factors, clusters and the role of past attendance were found, the overall model proposed in chapter four, whereby a mix of civic advantages and personal impacts were thought to generate evaluations of MICE policies, was not wholly supported by path analysis. Goodness of fit measures failed to achieve figures of 0.9, although individual components of the model did achieve this. Reasons for this were thought to exist in the developmental nature of the MICE industry in Hang Zhou, and possibly in China as a whole, and these considerations are discussed in the final chapter.||en_NZ