The dark shadow of a world crisis : A study on how organizations in Östergötland county manage, organize and plan for the effects of the Corona pandemic 2020

University essay from Södertörns högskola/Turismvetenskap

Abstract: Tourism in rural areas has an important role of developing and altering the rural communities when it comes to the environment, social and economic structures. Rural areas have high potential in tourism development but the world is continuously experiencing the power of nature. December 2019 the world experienced the beginning of the Corona pandemic that would later affect the whole world in just weeks. The Corona pandemic has caused many problems throughout the world but one sector that was specifically affected was the tourism sector. Even though crises are to some extent random and rare, there is no organization that is immune from such events. Unfortunately, many tourism-oriented organizations have been affected by this crisis and there has been a marginal decrease in bookings from previous years. The purpose of this study is to examinate how different organizations manage, organize and plan for crises in rural destinations in Östergötland county. The focus lies on organizations that are dependent on tourism and that use tourism as their main sources of income. The study has a qualitative research approach meaning qualitative semi-structured interviews with organizations in rural destinations. The main findings were that organizations in rural areas don’t have experience about crisis management and therefore don’t adapt it in their organization. In order for organizations to reorganize and plan for the crisis there need to be guides and routines on how the organization will achieve it. By having different plans for different crises, the organization can be better prepared for the next one. The important steps in the reorganization are communication strategy, controlling resources and collaboration with stakeholders. No matter how big or small the organization is, it is important for each organization to have an organization plan in order to tackle and reduce the consequences of a crisis.

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