Title: Are East Asian tourists more apprehensive about food risks?

Authors: Svein Larsen; Zequn Ning; Jing Wang; Torvald Øgaard; Xiang Li; Wibecke Brun

Addresses: Department of Psychosocial Science, University of Bergen, 12-Christiesgate, N-5015 Bergen, Norway; University of Stavanger, Norwegian School of Hotel Management, N-4036 Stavanger, Norway. ' Beijing Institute of Tourism, Beijing Union University, Beisihuan Donglu 99, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, China. ' Beijing Institute of Tourism, Beijing Union University, Beisihuan Donglu 99, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, China. ' Norwegian School of Hotel Management, University of Stavanger, N-4036 Stavanger, Norway. ' Beijing Institute of Tourism, Beijing Union University, Beisihuan Donglu 99, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, China. ' Department of Psychosocial Science, University of Bergen, 12-Christiesgate, N-5015 Bergen, Norway

Abstract: The expectation that |food risk abroad is higher than at home| was explored in domestic and international tourists in China. Food risks at home were lowest, risks for |the trip you are on now| second lowest, and risks abroad highest, an effect that we label the |home is safer than abroad heuristic|. Absolute levels of food risks were higher in the present sample compared to earlier European samples. Chinese domestic respondents scored higher on risk judgments, but rated |genetically modified food| less risky than foreign tourists did. The tendency to judge the |all in all risks| lower than individual risks, the |conjunction fallacy|, was found in both domestic and international tourists. These cross national differences are robust. They are not a result of demographic differences or differences in scale use/understanding. The similarities between the groups are also interesting, suggesting a generic |home safer than abroad heuristic|.

Keywords: food risks; subjective risk; cross cultural risks; China; East Asia; domestic tourists; international tourists; safety; risk judgments; genetically modified food; foreign tourists; GM foods; individual risks; conjunction fallacy; cross national differences; demographic differences; demography; Beijing; tourism; anthropology; tourist industry; disasters; hospitality.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTA.2011.043707

International Journal of Tourism Anthropology, 2011 Vol.1 No.3/4, pp.226 - 238

Available online: 14 Nov 2011 *

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