Tourism statistics: Early adopters of big data?
This paper, originally prepared for the 6th UNWTO International Conference on Tourism Statistics, gives an overview of the different sources of big data and their potential relevance in compiling tourism statistics. It discusses the opportunities and risks that the use of new sources can create: new or faster data with better geographical granularity; synergies with other areas of statistics sharing the same sources; cost efficiency; user trust; partnerships with organisations holding the data; access to personal data; continuity of access and output; quality control and independence; selectivity bias; alignment with existing concepts and definitions; the need for new skills, and so on.
The global dimension of big data and the transnational nature of companies or networks holding the data call for a discussion in an international context, even though legal and ethical issues often have a strongly local component. [+]