Ontology 1-3 Epistemology and Methodology Assessment

Excerpt from Assessment :

The research too has to be reliable and valid cohering to an internal and external scientific definition of reality that is more physical and eschews the metaphysical and the abstract.

Ontological Basis

Positivism accepts a certain reality of existence and insists that this reality can be discovered by universal and immutable scientific / mathematical principles (Tribe, 2009) .

Epistemological Basis

The researcher has to distance himself as much as possible from his research in order to come to verifiable attempts. The scientific approach can help hims distance himself.

Interpretive Paradigm

An alternate rendering of this can be the constructionist paradigm where the approach depends upon the researcher in question and is often inductively created. It is subjective and avowedly so and the meaning / conclusions / perspective is generated from one's particular experiences, way of thinking, and origin (Oakes & Minca 2004, p. 30).

Ontological Basis

The researcher acknowledge existence of multiple realities

Epistemological Basis

The researcher sees himself as one of the actors who possesses his own 'take' on the subject. None is particularly more true / false than the other.

Feminist Paradigm

Feminism may be more of a political perspective than philosophical, although it combines both. Feminists see man as having dominated females and attempting to oppress them. This mode of masculine conduct is existent in overt and covert ways in many (if not all) cultures. Feminism, therefore, tries to bring these issues out into the open in order that they may be addressed (Letherby, 2003).

Ontological Basis

Men dominate women in a an unequally gendered world

Epistemological Basis

There is the relationship between the knower, the known, and the issue. The knower (researcher) is studying the female in this issue in order to point out existent injustice and to prompt reflection and, when necessary, retroactive action.

Article 1

Ranjan Bandyopadhyay & Karina Nascimento (2010): "Where fantasy becomes reality": how tourism forces made Brazil a sexual playground, Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 18:8,


This article uses a feminist approach as is evident in the tenor of the study.

The paper examines the political economy of tourism representations and destination imaging in Brazil and its effect on tourism in the country. The central argument is that the way that Brazil and its women are represented in tourist images has an important effect on how they tourists relate to Brazil and to its women, and that tourist paraphernalia uses the female to sell Brazil to the tourist. . The study investigates the representation of Brazil and its women during colonial times by Europeans, by the Brazilian Government and by the contemporary Western media, and concludes that these representations have made Brazil a sexual playground for tourists. In other words, the researchers conclude that Brazil's image is not a direct outcome of tourism representations alone; but rather its tourist image is strongly connected with complex historical, political and cultural processes.

Using the feminist approach that uses woman as its subject and makes man's domination of woman that issue to be addressed, the authors see their research and findings as significant in correcting social injustice to women. They point out that:

Sex tourism has not been seen as a subject for serious intellectual investigation, except for a few notable studies ... Despite the considerable body of literature on sex trafficking and HIV / AIDS, scholars have paid little attention to the role of tourism in the transmission of HIV / AIDS in this era of sustainable development....The complex issues emerging from the interface of tourism and AIDS deserve an in-depth ethnographic study, which future scholars can delve into. Thus, this study has profound implications for the concept of sustainable tourism. (945-948)


The study uses a feminist paradigm focusing on the plight of women in Brazil and on tendency of tourist marketing to use women as promotional aspect.

Ontological Basis

The researcher sees women as assuming the perspective reality of tourism (meaning that all centers around the woman).

Epistemological Basis

The researchers examined primary and secondary historical sources and documents -- that included letters, brochures, bo0oks, and other material -- in order to see how Brazil and Brazilians were portrayed and thought of throughout the centuries.

Although their material seems to come from an objective source, nonetheless their perspective is biased since they were selective in the type of material that they accepted. There may conceivably be a quantity of material that shows differing or contradictory perspectives of Brazil that the researchers did not review or that they rejected from their study. This makes their epistemology biased and causes me to define it as one that merged from the specific interests of a feminist agenda and was slanted towards that end.


The study is inductive -- it started with data that it analyzed and arrived at conclusion from (although one can as well call it deductive in that authors had presumptions). It is qualitative being an examination of data and text ("Data were collected from several sources to answer the research questions. In order to examine how Brazil is represented in colonial travel writings, textual representations of Brazil and Brazilians were collected from books written during the nineteenth century.. etc. etc. 935).

Article 2

Catarina Marques, Elizabeth Reis & Joao Menezes (2010): Profiling the segments of visitors to Portuguese protected areas, Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 18:8, 971-996

This study identifies the diversity of domestic visitors to Portuguese protected areas (PPA) based on areas that tourists believe that they can benefit from. The segments of PPA visitors are also compared with other nature-based tourist segments using empirical segmentation literature. Data were collected via a self-administered questionnaire and multivariate statistics techniques were applied. Five particular segments of visitors were identified based on the motivation for their visit and by the perceived importance of activities, and services, by their frequency of visit and by socio-demographics. Researchers concluded that the reasons for the visit in one segment are unrelated to any of the motivations of nature-based tourism.


This is clearly the positive approach since statistical data are used to conduct and assess outcome of the method (Data were collected via a self-administered questionnaire and multivariate statistics techniques were applied.) an d the whole follows pricniples of science as throughly as possible in order to exclude the researcher from the study and let the facts speak for themselves.

As the article says, the study itself was grounded on usage of empirical benefit segmentation literature and the empirical approach was employed throughout.

Ontological Basis

The researchers see science as providing a means to arrive at some certainty of the issue provided that all principles are scrupulously followed. There is, t ehrofre, one way -- rather than multiple ways -- of seeing reality and this is achieved by carefully and throughly following the scientific paradigm: "This study develops a comprehensive analysis of the profile of segments of domestic visitors to PPA, a theme where little empirical research has been conducted to date." (987)

Epistemological Basis

The researchers believe that knowledge can be arrived at form an externalist stance, namely from appealing to the fact and from excluding internalism (i.e subjectivity) as much as possible in order to arrive at clear and hard evidence. Facts are therefore translated in mathematical terms and even the collection and interpretation of facts, including questionnaries used, are all converted into empirical, mathematical mediums.

The researchers note for instance that

With regard to sampling representativeness, the results of the cluster analysis matched the empirical experience almost perfectly, which gives some confidence to the underlying structure and its generalization to the population; and the sample dimension issue is not important because the PPA management agency is only interested in identifying managerially useful segments, i.e. those that represent at least 10% of the population. (993).

Note how all cohered to facts.


This is clearly a quantitative study.

Data were collected via a self-administered questionnaire and multivariate statistics techniques were applied. Five particular segments of visitors were identified based on the motivation for their visit and by the perceived importance of activities, and services, by their frequency of visit and by socio-demographics. An empirical base was used as literary component and statistics included principal components, hierarchical and K-means cluster analyses

Article 3

Tao (Teresa), Chang-Hung, Eagles, Paul F.J. And Smith, Stephen L.J.(2004) 'Profiling Taiwanese Ecotourists Using a Self-definition Approach', Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 12: 2, 149 -- 168

Numerous studies have profiled ecotourists but these have been done mainly in the context of North American ecotourists. This study examines the rapidly developing Asian ecotourism market in the context of domestic visitation to Taiwan's Taroko National Park. The study uses an innovative self-defined approach to defining an ecotourist. Findings include demographic results, benefits sought, travel motivation, and activities. Comparisons between Taiwanese and North American ecotourists are also made.


This is an interpretative paradigm where the author believes that each has his/her particular lens for viewing reality and…

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