World heritage site: An effective brand for an archeological site?

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18 Scopus citations


This study examines whether branding archeological sites as World Heritage Sites (WHSs) will affect potential demand patterns. The study's research objectives are (1) to explore awareness of potential visitors to the brand and logo of WHS; (2) to investigate the effects of the designation on tourists' future behaviors; (3) to clarify whether the number of sites designated (3 versus 10) has an effect on future visitation patterns; and (4) to reveal possible relationships between the perception of a site as part of the world heritage and UNESCO's designation. This study commenced with an exploratory stage followed by administration of structured questionnaires focusing on inbound tourists to Caesarea, an archeological historical site in Israel. The findings indicate only moderate visitor awareness of the WHS title and logo, implying low brand equity as well as insignificant effects on future demand patterns. Moreover, visitors' willingness to pay (WTP) as well as overall motivation to visit seems to decline following the designation. However, visitors' perception of the site as world heritage is positively linked to WTP. The number of designated sites within a particular state is found to have a positive effect on future demand patterns. Based on the findings specific recommendations are offered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-208
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Heritage Tourism
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2011


  • Archeological site
  • Brand
  • Willingness to pay
  • World Heritage Site

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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