Evaluation of the Impact of Religious Tourism on the Entrepreneurship Development of Peripheral Villages (Case Study: Garepooshtloo Region – Zanjan County)

Document Type : علمی


Shahid Beheshti University


Extended Abstract
Tourism is one of the most efficient processes used to encourage economic growth in countries that due to producing single product or limited energy sources have motionless and vulnerable economic system. In other words, tourism in modern terms is considered a phenomenon which is an inseparable part of today’s industrial society and is an important “ring” in the chain of recycling in the society. Therefore, entrepreneurial activities of religious tourism in rural settlements, fundamental acceptance of synthetic responsibilities against people (occupation, hygiene, education, human rights, benefits, continuity of financial and economical incomes as well as conservation of resources and environment) are considered as undeniable necessities for a good entrepreneurship by companies and organizations, and a great switch is being undertaken from maximization of value for stock-holders to maximization of value beneficiaries. The objective of the current research is to study the beneficial effects of religious tourism entrepreneurship in rural areas and their possible effects on economic growth along with rural development in the rural areas.
1- Does increasing tourism have a positive effect on entrepreneurship space in rural areas?
2- Does increasing tourism have a positive effect on occupation income and decreasing emigration from villages to cities in the case study rural area?
In terms of rural tourism, we can state that, on one hand, preparing new opportunities for most of villages brings livelihood, and that on the other hand, uncontrolled development of those areas leads to social and ecological damages in rural accommodation. The surveys reveal that the development of tourism in rural areas can have positive effects such as life quality, increasing rural population's cooperation, increasing mental health of the rural population and economic stability. One of the most important types of tourism that can have good effects in the development of rural areas is supposed to be religious tourism. The evidences left from great civilizations of the Middle East and ancient Egypt and etc., and also the evidences remained before history reveal that from very long time ago a lot of people set off for religious travels, in a way that huge mass of pilgrimages had accepted any kind of danger in order to do their religious duties and even had started very long travels in order to do so. In fact, religious wandering and tourism has a deep “root” in religious beliefs and credence’s of people. Hence, entrepreneurial activities of religious tourism in rural settlements, fundamentals acceptance of synthetic responsibilities against people (occupation, hygiene, education, human rights, benefits, continuity of financial and economical incomes, and also conservation of resources and environment) is considered as an undeniable necessity for a good entrepreneurship by companies and organizations, and a great switch is being undertaken from maximization of value for stock-holders to maximization of value beneficiaries.
This study is an applied research and in the present study explanation of religious tourism and its effects on rural development has been studied. This study is a practical one and the descriptive-analytical methodology has been used, the data were collected through field and library data collection methods (questionnaire, questioning and observation) and the descriptive statistic methodology (e.g., calculation of frequency, variance, and the mean value) and deductive methodology (e.g., the correlation coefficient, the single sample T parameter, the Tokay test and the Freedman test) were used to analyze the data.
The importance of this study lies in emergence of obstacles to the creation of entrepreneurial ideas in the field of religious tourism and investigation affecting factors on employment, income and migration in rural settlements.
The results of the present study indicate that religious tourism had not effect on the creation of entrepreneurial ideas; however, among different component of occupation, income and immigration, occupation was the only aspect influenced by religious however apparently non-native settlers and the households settled in vicinity of the holey shrine of Imamzde Hajiseirn were influenced more than the others.


Aghajani. H., & Ganjehkhor, Z. (1389/2010). Exploring role of psychological characteristics on independent entrepreneurship process (Case Study: Mazandaran Province entrepreneurs). Change Management Journal (Journal of Management), 2(4), 118-140. [In Persian]
Ahmadi-e-Shadpurabadi, M., & Sabzabadi, A. (1390/2011). An analysis of the development potential of cultural tourism metropolis of Qom. Journal of National Studies, 12(2), 83-112. [In Persian]
Ajit, S. K. (2004, August). Quest for good governance: Contribution and potential of religious institutions as stakeholders. In Monash Governance Research Unit Conference, 27(1), 1-15.‏
Aref, F. (2011). The effects of tourism on quality of life: a case study of Shiraz, Iran. Life Science Journal, 8(2), 26-30. ‏
Azimi Hashemi, M., Shariati Mazinani, S., & Azam Kari, F. (1391/2012). Socio-Cultural dimensions of a sustainable pilgrimage of Mashhad city. Journal of Iranian Social Studies, 6(3), 131-156. [In Persian]
Benjamins, M.R. (2005). Religious influence on perspective health case use in a nationally representative sample of middle-age women. Journal of Behavior Medicine, 27(1), 475–497.
Bhuiyan, M. A. H., Siwar, C., Ismail, S. M., Islam, R., & Ehsan, D. (2011). Potentials of Islamic tourism: A case study of Malaysia on east coast economic region. Australian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences, 5(6), 1333-1340. ‏
Boroujeni, H., & Tohidlou, M. (1390/2011). Studied the pattern of effective management of tourism: religious destination Mashhad. Journal of Tourism Studies, 7(52), 16-25. [In Persian]
Christensen, A. (1369/1990). Iran in Sassanid era (R. Tasami Trans.). Tehran: Donya-e ketab Publication. [In Persian] ‏
Darban-e-Astaneh, A., Ghadiri-e-Masoom, M., & Firoozi, M. (1391/2012). Examines the relationship between organizational performance and entrepreneurial skills of rural local managers (Case study: RM Qazvin Province). Journal of Rural Researches, 3(1), 27-59. [In Persian]
Durant, W. (1380/2001). The history of civilization (A. Aram, Trans.). (6st ed.), Tehran: Islamic Revolution press. [In Persian]
Ebrahimzadeh, E., Kazemizadeh, S., & Eskandar Sani, M. (1390/2012). Strategic Planning for Tourism Development, with a great focus on religious tourism (Case study: Qum city). Journal of Human-Geographical Studies, 43(76), 118-141. [In Persian]
Eizad, E., & Ebrahami-e-Koohinhe, M. (1393/2014). Analyze the effects of tourism on rural development. Journal of Rural Development Strategy, 1(1), 71-83. [In Persian]
Ejtahednejhad-e-Kashani, S., & Ghavami, N. (1391/2012). Pilgrim dual explorer in the lived experience of three generations (Case Study: Shahid Beheshti University staff). Journal of Social Studies, 6(3 & 4), 5-26 [In Persian]
Estelaji, A., & Khoshniyat, M. (1391/2012). Cognition of tourism efficiency and exposition of better tourism development pattern in the point of view of functional geography (Case study: Rey city). Journal of Geography. 10(34), 251- 275. [In Persian]
Faraji-e-Sabokbar, H., Badri, A., Sojasi-e-Gheidari, H., Sadeghloo, T., & Shahdadi, A. (1390/2011). Evaluate the development of entrepreneurship in rural areas by using Prometea, Human Geography Research Quarterly, 43(75), 53-68. [In Persian]
Ghaderi, E. (1386/2007). General study of tourism industry situation in the country. Tehran: Majlese Shoraye Eslami study cener, cultural studies office. [In Persian]
Ghanian, M., Khani, F., & Baghaei, L. (1390/2011). Evaluation of entrepreneurship climate in rural tourism (Case study: Oraman region). Journal of Rural Researches, 2(7), 99-123. [In Persian]
Hashemi, S. (1390/2011). Clarifying the role of local institutions in the development of rural entrepreneurship. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Tehran University, Tehran, Iran. [In Persian]
Icep. (1997). Religious Tourism. Tourism Sources Markets, 12(1), 30-33.
Jahangiri, A. (1381/2002). Sustainable development and entrepreneurship in the state. Proceeding of the Challenges and Prospects for Development Conference in Iran, Tehran, Publication Management and Planning Education and Research Institute. [In Persian]
Kim, K. (2002). The effects of tourism impacts upon quality of life of residents in the community Doctoral dissertation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. ‏
Mahdavi, D. (1383/2004). The role of tourism in development of rural areas located around urban areas and presenting a strategic model (Case study: Lavasane Koochak village). Unpublished master’s thesis, Tarbiate Modarres University, Tehran, Iran. [In Persian]
Momeni, M., Sarrafi, M., & Ghasemi-e-Khozani, M. (1387/2009). Religious tourism structure and functionning and endogenous management in Mashhad metropolitan. Quarterly Geography and Development, 6(11), 13-38. [In Persian]
Monshizade, R. (1385/2007). Tourism. Tehran: Masee Publication. [In Persian]
Nahavandi, M., & Nemati, F. (1389/2010). Threats and opportunities of pilgrimage tourism in Iran. Iranian Society of Cultural Studies and Communication Quarterly, 6(20), 145-172. [In Persian]
Neuman, L. W. (2002). Social research methods: Qualitative and quantitative approaches. ‏
Olsen, D. H. (2006). Management issues for religious heritage attractions. Tourism, religion and spiritual journeys, 4(1), 104-120. ‏
Rahmani, Kh., Poor Taheri, M., & Rokaldin Eftekhari, A. (1392/2013). Strategic planning development of religious tourism in rural areas, (Case study: religious places Uraman villages with beds, a carpenter and Hajij). Journal of Spatial Planning, 17(1), 66-43. [In Persian]
Rezvani, A. A. (1379/2000). Geography and tourism industry. Tehran: Payame Noor University. [In Persian]
Rezvani, M. R. (1384/2005). Rural tourism development (Sustainable tourism approach). Tehran: Tehran University press. [In Persian]
Rezvani, M. R. (1387/2008). Rural tourism development. Tehran: Tehran University press. [In Persian]
Rokaldin-e-Eftekhari, A., & Ghaderi, E. (1381/2002). The effects of rural tourism on rural development. Journal of Modarres Human Sciences, 6(2), 23-41. [In Persian]
Rokaldin-e-Eftekhari, A., & Sojasi-e-Gheidari, H. (1389/2010). Rural development with an emphasis on entrepreneurship. Tehran: SAMT Press. [In Persian]
Saeedi, A., & Soltani-e-Moghadas, R. (1392/2013). The Role of second homes in tourism and capital flows in rural areas (Case study: Binaloud area). Journal of Geography, 11(36), 33-53. [In Persian]
Saeedi, A., Mahmoudi, M., & Khodadadi, P. (1391/2012). Rural tourism: Requirements and limitations with refers to Districts Jawaherdeh (Mazanderan) and Sarvabad (Kordestan). Journal of Geography, 10(35), 5 -19. [In Persian]
Saeedi, A., Rahmani-e-Fazli, A., & Ahmadi, M. (1393/2014). Annexation of rural settlements to Zanjan City (Case study: Sayan and Gawazang villages). Journal of Housing and Rural Environment, 33(145), 3-16. [In Persian]
Santos, M. D. G. M. P. (2002). Fatima: religious tourism in a sanctuary-city. ‏
Shahande, B. (1380/2001). Ecotourism is not only circulating in the nature. Green Wave Quarterly, 2(7), 51-49. [In Persian]
Sharpley, R. & Sharply, J. (1380/2001). Rural tourism. (1st ed., R. Monshizadeh, & F. Nasiri, Trans.). Tehran: Monshi Press. [In Persian]
Sharron, S. L., Lee, D., & Laing, J. (2011). Tourism partnerships in protected areas: exploring contributions to sustainability. Environmental Management, 48(4), 734-749. ‏
Statistical Center of Iran. (1390/2011). Population census calendar 2011. Tehran: Iran Statistics Center. [In Persian]
Taghvaei, M., Mousavi, S., & Golami-e-Bimorgh, Y. (1389/2010). Study to religious tourism development, (Case study: Norabad Mamsani county). Journal of Geographical Space, 10(31), 39-64. [In Persian].
Williams, D. R., & McIntyre, N. (2012). Place affinities, lifestyle mobility’s, and quality-of-life. In Handbook of tourism and quality-of-life research (pp. 209-231). Springer Netherlands. ‏
World tourism organization. (2008). Tourism highlights (2008ed). Madrid: World tourism organization
Zhang, M., Huang, L., Wang, J. H., Liu, J., Jie, Y. G., & Lai, X. (2007). Religious tourism and cultural pilgrimage: A Chinese perspective. Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage Management: An International Perspective, 98-112. ‏