Research Output

Questioning women’s empowerment through tourism entrepreneurship opportunities: The case of Omani women

  This thesis adopts critical feminist theory, which is a combination of both critical theory and feminist theory, to explore the nature and experiences of Omani women involved in tourism entrepreneurship with particular regard to empowerment. Several studies have identified the potential role of tourism entrepreneurship to empower women due to the many benefits that it provides. However, this potential, and the extent that it empowers women, has been questioned. A review of the literature on women in tourism entrepreneurship reveals that there are several issues that have theoretical and practical implications for women’s empowerment through this activity. Furthermore, a review of the development studies literature indicates that there are many prevailing issues and debates surrounding the concept of women’s empowerment that
merit further investigation.
The fieldwork for this research took place in Oman during 2013-­‐2014 and included an examination of a hosting group, sewing group and a number of women tourism entrepreneurs. Participant observations and semi-­‐structured/unstructured interviews were conducted to collect information about these women. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the collected information and to develop three ethnographic case studies. The findings of this research reveal that tourism entrepreneurship does not inevitably bring about empowerment for Omani women. It is far from being an activity for women’s individual and collective empowerment,
given that the scope for such remains dependent on the embedded environment and is influenced by the nature of tourism enterprise work. An empirically informed conceptual framework was developed from the data to present this phenomenon. A grounded conceptualization was also developed from the data to conceptualize the process of women’s empowerment for Omani women in tourism entrepreneurship. Theoretical implications of the findings are
identified in relation to the appropriate use of the concept of women’s empowerment in tourism research. Practical implications of the findings are also identified in relation to local and international tourism organisations that utilises tourism entrepreneurship opportunities for women’s empowerment purposes.

  • Type:


  • Date:

    01 April 2017

  • Publication Status:


  • Funders:

    Edinburgh Napier Funded


Salim Al Mazro'ei, L. B. Questioning women’s empowerment through tourism entrepreneurship opportunities: The case of Omani women. (Thesis). Edinburgh Napier University. Retrieved from



Tourism entrepreneurship, women’s empowerment, Oman, hosting, sewing, women tourism entrepreneurs, critical feminist theory, ethnographic case studies

Monthly Views:

Available Documents