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Exploring hospitality education as an occupation in Hong Kong: attractions, challenges and commitment.

Fung, P. Y., 2019. Exploring hospitality education as an occupation in Hong Kong: attractions, challenges and commitment. Doctoral Thesis (Doctoral). Bournemouth University.

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Abstract

Occupational prestige is a key consideration for Chinese people when making career choices, due to the influence of Chinese culture. As Chinese culture is characterised by collectivism and a high power distance, hospitality jobs are considered non-professional and accorded a low social status within the Hong Kong community. Consequently, local people commonly perceive hospitality management studies as unnecessary, especially at the higher educational level. Although educators are highly respected in Chinese communities, the work of hospitality educators is viewed as a non-professional stream of education and relegated to a secondary position in society. These conditions place hidden constraints on the development of hospitality education and the choice of hospitality education as a career in Hong Kong. The main purpose of this study is to explore hospitality education as an occupation in Hong Kong. Accordingly, the study explores the reasons why educators in Hong Kong choose hospitality education as a career and identifies the current and perceived future challenges they face. The study also investigates the level of occupational commitment of hospitality educators in Hong Kong and identifies the key antecedents of their occupational commitment. To achieve the research objectives, the study adopts both qualitative and quantitative research methods in the form of focus group interviews and questionnaires. The questionnaires were administered to Hong Kong hospitality educators by email and face to face, and 314 valid completed questionnaires were collected for data analysis. The findings of the study show that hospitality educators pursue their careers in Hong Kong mainly because of the high occupational prestige and self-fulfilment of working in education, but perceive the poor image of hospitality work as one of their main career challenges. This confirms the contradictory position of hospitality educators in Hong Kong society. The findings also show that Chinese hospitality educators have the lowest level of affective occupational commitment but the highest continuance and normative occupational commitment. This implies that their commitment to their occupation is induced mainly by external pressure and the cost of leaving, fitting with the collectivistic nature of Chinese culture. In addition, the study shows that self-actualisation at work, perceived occupational image, person-job fit, impact concerns and job characteristics have various impacts on the affective, continuance and normative occupational commitment of hospitality educators in Hong Kong. To enhance the occupational commitment of these educators, it is necessary to study the influence of each antecedent carefully to provide them with adequate support. Furthermore, the findings indicate that both their hospitality work and their hospitality education experiences strengthen the impact of person-job fit on their occupational commitment but dampen the impact of occupational prestige on their commitment. This implies that in Chinese communities, occupational prestige cannot sustainably induce occupational commitment throughout the career development journey of hospitality educators. Based on these findings, self-image enhancement, a recognition system and knowledge enhancement opportunities are recommended to enhance the occupational commitment of hospitality educators in Hong Kong.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Additional Information:If you feel that this work infringes your copyright please contact the BURO Manager
Uncontrolled Keywords:hospitality education; occupational commitment; occupational prestige
Group:Faculty of Management
ID Code:32592
Deposited By: Unnamed user with email symplectic@symplectic
Deposited On:30 Jul 2019 09:32
Last Modified:30 Jul 2019 09:32

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