Conceptualization and Operationalization of Destination Image

Asli D.A. Tasci, William C. Gartner, S. Tamer Cavusgil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

250 Scopus citations


The destination image has received much attention for about three decades. Studies of various aspects of destination images increased in volume during the 1990s. Echtner and Ritchie's (1991) review of destination image literature resulted in several suggestions in terms of both the conceptualization and operationalization of destination image. This study looks at the evolutionary nature of tourism destination image studies from both theoretical and operational perspectives. Necessary adjustments in the methodological rigor and the focus of inquiry for destination image research are offered using Echtner and Ritchie's review as a guide. A review of literature about destination image and other pertinent concepts indicated that several of Echtner and Ritchie's recommendations have been followed, whereas others have not. Also, several other important conceptualization- and methodology-related issues identified in the destination image literature are addressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)194-223
Number of pages30
JournalJournal of Hospitality and Tourism Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2007

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2014 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • destination image
  • image conceptualization
  • image formation
  • image management
  • image measurement

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