Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Edinburgh: how good... or bad?

I had an interesting discussion this afternoon, where it was pointed out to me that Edinburgh City Council has a serious problem with its finances. As such that it needs to sell its assets (e.g. India Building, Royal High School) and make several thousand employees redundant to address its deficit. Not to dismiss the pain of those being made redundant, Edinburgh appears to have become a developer’s scramble to grab prime sites - but for what purpose? Hotels and offices?  But how much affordable housing? Commercial gain at the cost of that which sustains the city - its community. This appears to be a very short sighted strategy that perhaps does not bode well for Edinburgh long-term. 

Indeed, what is the long-term future of Edinburgh? There is a Humblebum song  "Why Don't They Come Back to Dunoonwww.youtube.com/watch?v=4ruwmeWFqyc. Perhaps it will be, in the not too distant future: "Why Don't They Come Back to Edinburgh”. There is, perhaps an arrogant view, that visitors will come to Edinburgh because it is Edinburgh. Why? Especially with the apparent current trend to rapidly commodify the city. Moreover, there appears to be an assumption that Edinburgh is doing well as a tourism destination.

It is reported in the Edinburgh Evening News that a chief executive  states "city leaders “shouldn’t underestimate how well regarded Edinburgh is worldwide”  www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/marketing-chief-hails-scheme-for-royal-high-hotel-1-3949120#ixzz3rmQcvMsb. But high regard does not bring visitors to Edinburgh. Indeed, does anyone know what has brought visitors to Edinburgh in 2015? Moreover, why do VisitScotland statistics suggest that people are staying fewer nights in Edinburgh compared to 2006? (see earlier blog). This CEO  is also reported as stating: “If Edinburgh wants to be premium city, it has to behave like one”.  www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/marketing-chief-hails-scheme-for-royal-high-hotel-1-3949120#ixzz3rmQcvMsb But, does a 'premier city’ have apparent popularity as a destination for hen and stag nights? How dependent is Edinburgh upon this market for out of season trade? It is further stated that  “A music school will not add to Edinburgh’s attraction from an international point of view.” www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/marketing-chief-hails-scheme-for-royal-high-hotel-1-3949120#ixzz3rmQcvMsb. Is a school going to attract any less visitors than a hotel? Yet he supports the transformation of the Royal High School into a hotel, that is arguably unsuited to be a five star hotel, irrespective of claims by developers. Visitors do not come to a destination for a hotel unless it has something special to offer. Where is the publicly available business case to support the case for a hotel on the Royal High School site? It is not the first time that 'quality' hotels have moved downmarket. How quickly will this proposed hotel become 'budget'? 

I suggest there is a desperate need for a national debate about the long term future of Edinburgh, which is the second most popular destination in the UK. VisitScotland numbers suggest that visitors (both domestic and international) are spending less nights in Scotland (see previous blog). Scottish tourism is in part dependent upon the success of Edinburgh. However, I suggest that Edinburgh is squandering its heritage (see earlier blog) for short term gain. What attractions has Edinburgh developed that reflects heritage - culture? How long does it take for a visitor to ‘do’ Edinburgh as a destination? Why would a visitor want to come back? And all the other questions….. If Edinburgh cannot get it right then what hope for the rest of Scotland?

Is Edinburgh following a strategy of short term gain for long term pain? Perhaps (and it is only 'perhaps' - other solutions invited) it would be better that the City of Edinburgh Council declares bankruptcy so that a long term strategy for social, economic and sustainable development is put in place - for the benefit of those who live in Edinburgh  - its community.  

Monday, 9 November 2015

Is there a problem?

There is a perplexing situation in Scotland and specifically Edinburgh. The first concerns visitor numbers to both Scotland and Edinburgh, which appear to be currently stagnating, though are apparently below levels seen in 2006. Second is the growth of hotel accommodation in Edinburgh, mainly by the larger hotel chains - is this sustainable?  Third, are the recommendations of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) / United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)  on sustainable tourism, which draws attention to the importance of the community, though it is unclear how important a factor the community is in the development proposals for Edinburgh's 12 development sites: www.investinedinburgh.com/the-edinburgh-12/

VISITOR NUMBERS - SCOTLAND AND EDINBURGH

The analysis of the statistics provided by VisitScotland suggests a problem both nationally and for Edinburgh, assuming, of course, that these statistics portray a reasonable picture of what is actually happening. There is a disclaimer attached to the reports providing these statistics. Sadly, the most recent reported statistics are deficient for Edinburgh's overseas figures. The statistics for Edinburgh from 2011 have been adjusted, based upon national figures, to include N. Ireland, due to a change in the manner of their reporting.

In sum, at the national level, whilst spend might be up, the number of nights spent in Scotland appears to be in decline if not static  and the duration of stay appears in decline, if not static. Edinburgh does not appear to be faring much better. Remember that 2014 was a year with events (e.g. Commonwealth Games, Homecoming, Ryder Cup), which should have attracted overseas visitors, but how successful was this?





Source for both tables: www.visitscotland.org/research_and_statistics/tourismstatistics.aspx Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the data is correct, it is advisable to cross-check with original source in the event there has been an error introduced (updated 22.Nov.2015). 


What are the statistics for 2015? They are not yet available. However, the VisitScotland Trend Report for October reveals that there was a 6.4% fall in nights spent by domestic visitors to Scotland for the month of June 2015 from the previous year! To add, a 1.2% fall in spend!

What is happening, or is anything happening?

THE TOURISM OFFERING IN EDINBURGH: accommodation

Whilst there appears to be no growth in the number of nights spent in Scotland, nor in Edinburgh, there does appear to be growth in serviced accommodation provision in Edinburgh. The 2014 Hotel Development Schedule
(www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/20194/development_activity_reports/1032/development_activity_bulletin ) reveals targets of providing between 2,800 and 4,000 hotel bedrooms by 2015, a target which appears to be based on the defunct 2006 Tourism Framework for Change, which had ambitious growth targets.  This Schedule reveals that, since 2007, 3,128 rooms had been completed, with 2,979 inferred to be in progress, thus, in total, exceeding the upper target of 4,000 by 153%. Moreover, that hotel chains, particularly four, appear to be acquiring an increasingly large share (40%?) of serviced accommodation provision. However, it is unclear the uptake of Airbnb, though a visit to the website suggests that there are a large number of properties offering accommodation. To add, is the growing provision of student accommodation, available during the holiday season for tourists.

Is there really a need for more hotels in Edinburgh? Where is the justification? Moreover, how many of the 'Edinburgh 12' have hotel proposals embedded in their plans for site development? In view of arguments supporting the development of four-five star hotels, is there really demand?  What are the profiles of visitors to Edinburgh? Does anyone know?

In contrast, how much development is there orientated towards developing the local community, which introduces the next issue?


TOURISM SUSTAINABILITY

The Edinburgh Council Vision on sustainability is:
Edinburgh in 2020 will be a low carbon, resource efficient city, delivering a resilient local economy and vibrant flourishing communities in a rich natural setting.
Among its objectives, is to "have a new trademark – the “Sustainable City” – attracting visitors, industry and investors(Sustainable Edinburgh 2020 - The City of Edinburgh Council)

In 2005, the UNWTO/UNEP published an important document:  'Making Tourism More Sustainable, A guide for policy makers'(www.unep.fr/shared/publications/pdf/DTIx0592xPA-TourismPolicyEN.pdf). This draws attention to the Three Pillars of Sustainability: Economic,  Environmental and Social, the latter drawing attention to community. Moreover, it outlines twelve aims for sustainable tourism:
1) ECONOMIC VIABILITY
2) LOCAL PROSPERITY
3) EMPLOYMENT QUALITY
4) SOCIAL EQUITY
5) VISITOR FULFILMENT
6) LOCAL CONTROL
7) COMMUNITY WELLBEING
8) CULTURAL RICHNESS
9) PHYSICAL INTEGRITY
10) BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY
11) RESOURCE EFFICIENCY
12) ENVIRONMENTAL PURITY

The community appears to be an important feature for any location to call itself sustainable.

CONCLUSION?

So, to conclude, what is happening? Drawing upon my studies of the development of the Royal Mile (http://drsharwood.blogspot.co.uk/p/blog-page.html)  and assessment of documents relating to Edinburgh as a destination, I have to ask the question of whether Edinburgh is commodifying itself to the detriment of its culture and heritage. There is clearly an interest in developing hotels and other forms of temporary accommodation. What is being done to develop its cultural and heritage offering? How prevalent is the view that it is a good place to party [i.e. hen / stag nights] and see comedians in the festival? Can it be assumed that visitors will come to Edinburgh because it is EDINBURGH? Indeed, can it be assumed that visitors will continually come to Edinburgh for any reason? The UNWTO 2015 Tourism Highlights report (http://mkt.unwto.org/publication/unwto-tourism-highlights-2015-edition) forecasts 3.3% annual growth in arrivals, worldwide, between 2010 and 2030. 

What is Edinburgh's and Scotland's performance relative to this? What is going on? 

Moreover, what is being done to maintain a healthy community in the centre of Edinburgh, especially in the Old Town? Or is the museumification of the Old Town the inevitable price for an apparent commodification strategy for its economic development?  


Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Strategy as a form of Problem Structuring

Chandler's (1964) strategy-structure debate has never been conceptually reconciled for the simple reason that research has failed to produce an adequate conceptualisation of the interplay between strategy and structure. An intrinsic feature of this distinction is the complementary distinction between strategy as content and as process. These issues are important as strategy is a concept which is much abused in the everyday use of the concept.  Moreover, as a practice, it is not effectual - despite intent, commitment and resources, strategies are not realised. The more recent shift from a 'resource based view' of strategy to a 'strategy as practice' might have drawn attention to the detail of specific mechanisms, but, nevertheless, still fails to reveal why strategy is still one of the most enigmatic topics of research into business practice. Indeed, despite over 50 years of academic research, strategy is still an enigma.

Recent research into the development of strategy is conceptually grounded in the work of Stafford Beer (Viable System Model), which permits the modelling of a distributed governance structure, allowing the interplay of policy and practice to be explained. It is processually conceptualised as problem structuring methodology, thereby providing a prescriptive approach to the development and implementation of the strategy. It draws empirically upon the Scottish tourism industry and the national tourism strategies.

This work has been published in a preliminary form in Harwood, 2011: Can a Cybernetics Lens Contribute to the Business Strategy Domain? Kybernetes, (special issue: Progress in Organisational Cybernetics) 40(3/4), 507-527. LINK

Monday, 10 August 2015

Institutional pride in one’s heritage?
Is there a growing disregard for values?
 
Musselburgh race course, 10th Aug. 2015: Lack of both adherence to convention and care for the Lion Rampant. 
The racecourse has promoted itself as being the first race course in the UK to hold a race meeting on Good Friday link. What values can be inferred from these observations? 

Musselburgh Tolbooth, 10th Aug. 2015: It had been hanging like that for well over a week. Have raised the matter with thee Councillors. Despite their statements that officials have been notified, and the first statement was received before 10:10am, 11th Aug, the flag was still in same state at 10:30pm - 12 hours later. Who cares? That East Lothian council officers apparently had already been asked to sort this out 'without success', invites the question whether those asked care? After all 'it is only a flag' - but then again people die for their flag - it is a symbol. 

a)

b)

c & d)

Edinburgh Memorial to the War Dead, City Chambers, , (a) 7th Aug. 2015 - the 'Festival' (b) 8th Aug. 2015: showing respect?  the unknowing innocent / the disrespectful other? (c & d) 11th August 2015: Barricaded in  'under siege'.  
Note the positioning of the official ‘brollies’ - who is the sponsor?  Moreover, the Evening News reports: Memorial plaques to urge buskers to move on link 11th Nov, 2014. Progress?



Who cares?

Thursday, 9 July 2015

BUSINESS RATES

This is a short post. I understand that a Government body is responsible for determining the rateable value of businesses in Scotland. How transparent is this process? I am aware of one inconsistency. But no explanation has so far been forthcoming. The affected business may be closing because of lack of transparency and an apparent refusal to engage in a valid complaint. I assume there are other cases. I wonder whether there is a case for a formal inquiry into the practices of this Government body. Comments welcome.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

CAR SAFETY - The Spare Wheel, a lesson in banality of design

For the many years I have been driving I have always been reassured that should I have a tyre blowout - at least I could get moving again because I had a spare-wheel. Whatever the breakdowns I have suffered, a tyre blow-out was not too bad because it is relatively quick in dealing with. It might require road-side assistance to change the wheel, but at least I was mobile again.

I have acquired a new car, well it is a year old now. Made by Vauxhall, which I have grown to like as a producer of cars. I know nothing about cars, walked into a car dealership, told them that I wanted a car and an hour later was proud owner of a new car. It was an issue of need, as existing car had given up. It has the basics, steering wheel, four wheels, accelerator and brakes. I did assume it would have a spare wheel of the sort I am accustomed. I still know little about what I actually bought. On reflection, the dealer did not give me a full specification. But, then I know nothing about cars. It would have meant little. I put my trust into the person who sells me the car. I believe the dealer to be a reputable dealer. I still believe in that dealer.

Yesterday, the car had a tyre blow-out. I could not believe it when I discovered that my 'spare' wheel was not a full wheel but...

....a "temporary use spare wheels - non-standard spare/skinny spare" (AA @ www.theaa.com).

According to the AA car producers are increasingly moving to this with some only providing a 'Emergency inflation kit' - not much use when my tyre is shredded. I have since read that it is for the reason of weight and space!!! A full wheel would not be much heavier than this emergency wheel and yes there might be a space issue if minds are unimaginative. However, there is a basic requirement of a spare wheel that can function as effectively as that which it replaces. An MOT once required a complaint spare wheel. Have the MOT regulations changed?

I have been told that one is not supposed to drive more than 30 miles with this temporary wheel or the insurance is rendered invalid. The garage mechanic who changed my tyre told me that I should not do more than ten miles!  If I am in countryside remote from a garage on a Sunday, then what do I do? Even if a garage is open, is it likely to stock the specific tyre that I need? There are so many circumstances whereby I cannot comply to minimal use of the 'temporary' wheel. What happens if there is an accident with this 'temporary' wheel still mounted? Who is liable because the wheel covered 50 plus miles? The social cost of this backward move is what?

I despair of the banal mentality of whoever designs these substitutes for the real thing. What is the point of airbags etc, when a simple blow-out leaves me stranded, with a 'spare' that is effectively unsafe and bordering on the illegal.

The situation is symptomatic of an underlying issue that production designers are still not listening to users. It is not about imposing designs on the users but listening to users' needs. Von Hippel (2005) called it 'Democratizing Innovation'.

The user should not need to be expert but have the confidence that the supplier is expert, open and transparent. I have lost that faith.

I certainly have lost my faith in Vauxhall and other car makers who are following this trajectory of no full 'spare' wheel.


Thursday, 25 June 2015

WELCOME TO EDINBURGH

Three stories in the Edinburgh Evening News reveal an unpleasant aspect to Edinburgh, especially if you are travelling about. The first highlights the difficulty of getting picked up at Waverley train station.  Has anyone thought about car access to this train station, as it is difficult to be dropped off or picked up, particularly in Market Street, which is one of the easier access points? There is plenty of room for taxi's and coaches, but for cars, it is a logistical nightmare. The second story draws attention to delays in getting through security at Edinburgh Airport, with reported hour long queues and people missing their flights. The third reveals the suggestion to have integrated coverage of the whole of Edinburgh by CCTV for reasons of public safety and traffic management. However, it also raises the possibility that the movements of individuals can be tracked. Welcome to Edinburgh.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Distributed Governance through lens of VSM

The VSM (Viable System Model) was developed by Stafford Beer in the 1960s to 1980s and offers a powerful framework to make sense of organisational complexity, in particular, governance structures.

It focuses attention upon how discretion to make decisions is distributed throughout the organisational entity, irrespective of whether this is a firm, region, sector or nation state. Each named unit has its own sense of identity and a degree of autonomy, whilst accepting membership to a bigger whole. Thus, it supports collective activity in a co-ordinated manner, yet also is adaptive to changing circumstances, whether small or great. An effective adaptive mechanism leads to greater resilience to deal with the unexpected. Nevertheless, it adaptation is not passive and responsive, but proactive, innovative and creative. Innovation emerges in  its broadest sense from all elements of the system. Innovation, viability and sustainability is everyone's business. The VSM supports the design of more effective democratic and distributed governance structures and conditions more conducive to achieving aims.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

ONLINE JOB APPLICATIONS

The joy of finding the vacancy that fits personal aspirations is undermined by the discovery of the need to fill an online application form. The consequent frustration of trying to 'fit' the detail of one's CV into the constraining fields of the online form, is accompanied by the time wastefully spent in data entry and re-entry. And then there is the pain to discover that the 5 or 6 hours spent entering data into the online facility was a complete waste of time because your application was turned down.

This whole process may be ideal for the more 'standard' profiles, but for idiosyncratic individuals with a unique profile, it is a deterrent. Moreover, whilst it might be argued that it provides a degree of equity with regard to how applications are handled as well as discourages all but the most committed, this is not the case. How many good applicants have been discouraged because of the time wasting nature of this process? In other words, it is sub-optimal. Moreover, it fails to capture those very revealing details that provide insight into an potentially good candidate. Someone who does meet the standard profile, but offers an interesting but 'different' profile, so who is perhaps an even more appropriate candidate.

There are many other arguments both for and against online job applications, but the fundamental issue is whether those recruiting recognise the distinction between when the online process enables or hinders the effectiveness of the recruitment process. In the latter case of hinderance, it could be argued that the barrier of time is discriminatory.  It is perhaps time that those recruiters who insist upon online forms to be completed, rethink their strategies and adopt more effective approaches for enticing the more desirable candidates for vacancies. Good practices should not require blind adherence to technology use.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Organisational Dysfunctionality

There are many reasons why organisations, whether public or private sector, do not function smoothly. It can be due to structural dysfunctionality, whereby mechanisms are not adequate to deal with the complexity of the everyday. Alternatively it may be due to individuals who, for whatever reason, are pursuing their own agenda. There are other reasons, for example, inappropriate technologies or policies. Invariably, dysfunctionality can be diagnosed, given sufficient transparency of what is happening - transparency is revealed in the detail of discrete events, which collectively can reveal the problematic areas, and thus allow a negotiated resolution. The analogy is the diagnosis of an ailment, which, by evaluating its symptoms, leads to an iterative process involving deeper examination of the problematic area(s), until the cause of the ailment is found. Bad customer service is an ailment, but its cause requires a systematic approach. One approach that facilitates such an analysis - diagnosis uses Stafford Beer's Viable System Model (VSM). However, this raises an interesting question. If dysfunctionality can be diagnosed, why is dysfunctionlity endemic to all organisations and not eliminated? One reason is that resolution requires negotiation. But this draws attention to another problem...


Sunday, 22 March 2015

Is Edinburgh Squandering Its Heritage? What is going on?

There is something happening in the centre of Edinburgh, which invites the question of what is going on? My research into the Royal Mile reveals the shift from a retail offering that caters for a residential community to one that caters for visitors,. However, where are the product offerings that are made in Scotland, particularly when the Royal Mile harboured, during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a rich manufacturing base. Even with the demise of this manufacturing base, as late as 1984, the Canongate Venture, in New Street, of Canongate, was a hive of entrepreneurial activity. Now, the only production in the Royal Mile is fudge and tartan material for the ever prominent visitors.

If the frame of study is extended to the New Town and beyond, then most recently there are puzzling developments. The B-listed Scottish Provident building, in St Andrew Square, was razed to the ground during the summer of 2014. Among those critical of this move is architect, Malcolm Fraser, who draws public attention this in The Scotsman, noting that it was one of the finest modern buildings in Scotland.[1] Moreover, it is reported in the Evening News that developers had submitted new plans for the levelled site which were at odds with those originally proposed[2]. Then the Edinburgh’s Evening News reveals that the A-listed ‘old Royal High School’ building, which was built in the 1820s and has lain relatively unused since 1968, is to be converted into a luxury hotel.[3]  Further, that in 2012, the building had been placed on the Buildings at Risk Register.[4]  This is followed by the news that a government review recommends the closure of General Register House, the custom built Robert Adam building dating back to the eighteenth century.[5] Other major developments include the redevelopment of the 1970s St James Centre, and the long derelict sites at Caltongate and Haymarket.

In each of these three major developments there is provision for hotels. The website (www.edinburghstjames.com) of developer, TIAA Henderson Real Estate (TH Real Estate) reveals that the new ‘St James Quarter’, will not only provide 250 new homes and a retail offering, but also will include hotel accommodation: “The hotel is designed as an inspiring and attractive investment opportunity with up to 210 hotel rooms, as well as an enticing 41,000 sq. ft. apart hotel that has the potential to provide up to 70 suites”. The Caltongate site is a ‘mixed use development’, which will include the delivery of housing (both affordable and open market), offices, hotel, retail, food and drink premises. The hospitality trade website www.bighospitality.co.uk  reports that this site will host Premier Inn’s first Edinburgh ‘Hub’, comprising 130 rooms, as well as a 127 room Premier Inn[6]. The notion of a ‘Hub’ is a Premier Inn innovation, which provides a value for money compact room (11.4 m2) in redeveloped existing city center buildings.[7] A second, 157 room ‘Hub’ is planned to be opened in late 2015 in Rose Street in the New Town. The Haymarket complex will comprise retail and office space as well as a 190 bed hotel and 168 apart-hotel (www.thehaymarketedinburgh.com). A press release by the site’s developer, Interserve, reports that a 150-room Premier Inn ‘Hub’, the third, is to be built on this site.[8]

To add to this, is not only the £50m development of the airport, which will increase passenger numbers by over two million by 2020, but this is accompanied by the proposal of a £15 million hotel development (Hampton Hilton Hotel), creating 175 bedrooms.[9]

One has to ask the question whether this additional provision of commercial space, particularly hotel accommodation is sustainable. An increasing amount of hotel room provision has been added in the last few years so that, currently  around 40% of all hotel accommodation is provided by four hotel chains, of which three can be described as ‘budget’. The City of Edinburgh Council report ‘Edinburgh by Numbers, 2014’ reveals that hotel occupancy peaks in August at around 90%, though falls to a low of around 60% in January. Moreover, VisitScotland statistics reveal that the number of nights spent by domestic and overseas visitors dropped by 1% and 20% respectively over the period 2006 to 2013. To add to this profile is the provision of and recent growth in purpose built student accommodation, with 12,249 bedspaces being supplied by both the university and private sectors, with an additional 5,657 bedspaces in the pipeline[10]. During the summer months, when students are away, then how much of this accommodation will be made available to visitors? Is there really a need for more hotels?

When the sustainability argument is added to this, then of the three pillars of sustainability (social, economic and environmental[11]), the social pillar, which draws attention to that which is embedded in the locality (e.g. host community, local producers, heritage) appears to be neglected. The commodification of the tourism offering to the apparent detriment of everything else will reduce the integrity of a location that has a rich heritage, expressed not only in terms of the physical infrastructure, but also through its community, their activities and that which has sustained this community. I suggest that Edinburgh is not a sustainable city.

The picture presented above is perhaps ignoring the positive work being carried out in the rest of Edinburgh, but this calls for better visibility of the work and a more systemic evaluation of what is going on, so that what is happening in the Royal Mile can be better contextualised. Nevertheless, my focus upon the Royal Mile, which for centuries has been the hub of Edinburgh’s residential community, does raise questions about this hub. Where is the community? Where is that which can sustain this community? What is being done to avoid the dilution of this hub’s heritage? Why would visitors want to come to Edinburgh in ten years time if this trend  continues? What is going on?







[1]  Malcolm Fraser: Backbone can keep Provident standing. The Scotsman, 13th Aug. 2014. http://www.scotsman.com/news/malcolm-fraser-backbone-can-keep-provident-standing-1-3042623, 15th Feb. 2014
Architect hits out at ‘bland’ Edinburgh designs. Evening News, 18th Aug. 2014.  http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/architect-hits-out-at-bland-edinburgh-designs-1-3512789, 15th Feb. 2015
[2] Developers under fire over St Andrew Square plans. Evening News, 31st Oct. 2014. http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/developers-under-fire-over-st-andrew-square-plans-1-3589979, 15th Feb. 2015
[3] Luxury hotel planned for Old Royal High School. Edinburgh Evening News, 17th Dec. 2014. http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/luxury-hotel-planned-for-old-royal-high-school-1-3636760, 15th Feb. 2014.
£55m hotel plan for old Edinburgh Royal High, The Scotsman, 5th Feb 2015. http://www.scotsman.com/news/scotland/top-stories/55m-hotel-plan-for-old-edinburgh-royal-high-1-3680771, 15th Feb. 2014.
[5] Review recommends closure of General Register House. Evening News, 7th Feb. 2015. http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/review-recommends-closure-of-general-register-house-1-3683218, 15th Feb. 2015.
[6] Whitbread to open Hub and Premier Inn hotels at £150m Edinburgh development. By Emma Eversham, 9th Dec 2013. www.bighospitality.co.uk/Venues/Whitbread-to-open-Hub-and-Premier-Inn-hotels-at-150m-Edinburgh-development
[7] Whitbread Press Release: Whitbread Launches New Hotel Concept. 2nd July 2013 www.whitbread.co.uk/media/news-press-releases/whitbread-launches-new-hotel-concept.html, 15th Feb. 2015.
[8] Major hotel agreement for Edinburgh’s West End. Interserve Press Office 4th Nov. 2014. www.interserve.com/news-media/press-releases/press-release/2014/11/04/major-hotel-agreement-for-edinburgh-s-west-end#.VOH-n1q3IUU, 15th Feb. 2015.
[9] £15m hotel plan amid Edinburgh Airport traffic rise. Evening News, 20th Nov. 2014. www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/transport/15m-hotel-plan-amid-edinburgh-airport-traffic-rise-1-3610962, 15th Feb. 2015.
[11] Making Tourism More Sustainable, A guide for policy makers UNWTO/UNEP, 2005 http://www.e-unwto.org/content/w715w4/fulltext.pdf, 19th Feb 2015.