U predmetnoj doktorskoj disertaciji istražuje se utjecaj ključnih elemenata turističke ponude na konkurentnost ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu. U tu svrhu izvršena je detaljna analiza prethodnih istraživanja usmjerenih na navedenu problematiku i provedeno primarno istraživanje čiji su ciljevi: istražiti razinu kvalitete i utjecaj iznajmljivača, kvalitete objekta i ponude destinacije na konkurentnost ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu; dokazati međuovisnost konkurentnosti ponude smještaja i ponude destinacije; utvrditi razinu poduzetničkih znanja, vještina i kompetencija potrebnih za pružanje kvalitetne usluge te njihov utjecaj na uspješnost poslovanja i intenzitet suradnje s DMO; dokazati povezanost zadovoljenja motiva gostiju i njihove percepcije konkurentnosti; naglasiti važnost uključivanja destinacijskoga menadžmenta u organizaciju programa i sadržaja s ciljem povećanja konkurentnosti ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu. Sumiranjem spoznaja proizašlih po završetku predmetne disertacije među najznačajnijim znanstvenim doprinosima mogu se navesti: sustavno objedinjen pregled svih relevantnih spoznaja i podataka koji se tiču smještaja u domaćinstvu (zakonskih odrednica, povijesnog razvoja, utjecaja obiteljskoga poduzetništva i menadžmenta); znanstveno istraživanje provedeno na uzorku od 190 iznajmljivača, 316 gostiju i 28 direktora turističkih zajednica; izradi modela konkurentnosti ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu. Rezultati provedenog istraživanja pokazuju kompleksnost i nužnost sustavnoga pristupa povećanju konkurentnosti ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu. Uviđa se međuovisnost svih dionika i činitelja ponude smještaja u domaćinstvu i kvalitete te važnost kontinuiranoga obrazovanja i suradnje svih dionika temeljem čega se identificiraju tri ključne pretpostavke konkurentnosti, a to su: znanje, kvaliteta i suradnja. Implikacije rezultata istraživanja posebice se odnose na pružatelje usluga smještaja u domaćinstvu i predstavnike turističkih zajednica s ciljem pravilnog oblikovanja ponude navedene vrste smještaja i povećanja njene konkurentnosti. Disertacija također može poslužiti kao polazna točka za daljnja istraživanja.
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The number of beds in private accommodation makes more than a half of all beds at the level of the Republic of Croatia, which shows their importance in the overall structure of accommodation facilities. Due to its massive and expansive growth observed in recent years, as well as to the specifics of services and spatial distribution, Croatia, compared to other European countries, is a phenomenon that deserves more detailed scientific analysis. The private accommodation offer is accompanied by a number of problems that are manifested in: too many private accommodation units which, due to an uneven classification system, result in an uneven level of quality; legal overestimation and their incompatibility with the real needs and possibilities of the providers of private accommodation services; insufficient skill level needed for providing services in private accommodation; the lack of market identity; weak promotion and appearance on the tourist market; poor cooperation of all stakeholders at the destination level; unclear development vision and the lack of relevant scientific domestic and foreign literature. The aforementioned problems are the starting point in the further development of the dissertation and determine the subject and objectives of the research. The focus of the doctoral dissertation is researching the impact of the key elements of the tourist offer on the competitiveness of private accommodation offer. To this end, a detailed analysis of the previous research focused on the mentioned issue was carried out and a primary research was carried out in order to: explore the quality level of the accommodation and the destination as well as the impact of renters to the competitiveness of the private accommodation offer; to research the interdependence of the competitiveness of the accommodation offer and destination offer; to determine the level of entrepreneurial knowledge, skills and competences needed to provide quality services and their impact on the success of the business and intensity of cooperation with the DMO; to demonstrate the link between satisfying the motives of guests and their perception of competitiveness; to emphasize the importance of destination management inclusion in the organization of programs and content with the aim of increasing the competitiveness of private accommodation offer. The purpose of the doctoral dissertation is to explore how each element of private accommodation offer affects its competitiveness i.e. what are the key preconditions of the
competitiveness of private accommodation offer. Only by raising the quality of all the elements of the offer and by combining them properly a synergistic effect can be achieved, resulting in an increase of competitiveness. Combining the elements of the offer necessarily implies the co-operation of all the stakeholders who are using the approach of learning organization continuously optimizing and improving the quality. Therefore, the fundamental purpose of the dissertation is to prove that the essence of creating a competitive private accommodation offer lies in three fundamentals: quality, knowledge and co-operation. Although private accommodation service providers represent an extremely small business system, by their characteristics they are considered as entrepreneurs, so in terms of planning and business organization it is possible to talk about management, whereby the learning organization's approach is considered a suitable choice as it allows for continuous adaptation to changing environment conditions and is based on acquiring new knowledge. Since the topic of competitiveness of private accommodation is generally not sufficiently researched yet, there is a justification for further research and it is expected that the doctoral dissertation will give a scientific contribution in theoretical as well as in the practical sense. Numerous scientific methods have been used in the theoretical part of the paper, such as: method of analysis and synthesis, induction and deducation, historical method and abstraction and concretization methods, which lay the basis for further dissertation and define the basic concepts needed for understanding the subject of research. In the empirical part of the paper, the basic method used is the survey methodology with the aim of collecting primary data through three structured questionnaires for three groups of respondents (providers of private accommodation services i.e. renters, guests and representatives of tourist boards) in the Primorje-Gorski kotar county. Collected data were analyzed by statistical methods: Descriptive statistical analysis was used to describe the data collected, the correlation analysis was used to test the main hypotheses, the t-test measured the significance of the difference between the average scores of the observed groups. Using an exploratory factor analysis a large number of variables are summarized in a smaller number of common factors that describe the construct of the perceived competitiveness of the accommodation best. The reliability of the extracted factors was assessed by the reliability analysis. For the purpose of interpreting the results of the research, the methods of abstraction and concretization and the methods of comparison were applied. Summing up the knowledge gained at the end of the subject dissertation among the most significant scientific contributions can be stated: a systematic overview of all relevant knowledge and data regarding private accommodation (legal determinants, historical development, influence of family entrepreneurship and management); a scientific survey conducted on a sample of 190 renters, 316 guests and 28 tourist board directors; a model of competitive private accommodation offer. The results of the research carried out show the complexity and necessity of a systematic approach to increasing the competitiveness of domestic accommodation offer. It is considered the interdependence of all stakeholders and factors of private accommodation and its quality and the importance of continuous education and cooperation of all stakeholders on the basis of which three key competitive prerequisites are identified: knowledge, quality and cooperation. Implications of the research results are particularly related to the providers of private accommodation and the representatives of tourist boards with the aim of properly formulating the offer of the mentioned type of accommodation and increasing its competitiveness. The dissertation can also serve as a starting point for further research.