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Does Airbnb impact non-hosting Residents' quality of life? Comparing media discourse with empirical evidence
Tourism Management Perspectives  (IF6.586),  Pub Date : 2021-07-02, DOI: 10.1016/j.tmp.2021.100853
Makarand Mody, Courtney Suess, Tarik Dogru

In addition to disrupting the hotel industry, Airbnb has been portrayed in the media as significantly diminishing the quality of life of residents in neighborhoods where it is available. There is little empirical research to support such rhetoric, particularly as provided by the residents themselves. To address this gap, the present study uses the social exchange theory framework to develop and test two alternative models of residents' attitudes towards Airbnb. Findings indicate that residents are generally positive towards Airbnb, perceiving higher positive than negative impacts. Moreover, those residents who possess more knowledge of Airbnb, engage more with their communities, and perceive potential benefits from Airbnb also perceive higher positive impacts, while the need for regulation serves as the key determinant of residents' perceptions of Airbnb's negative impacts. The positive impacts, in turn, have a stronger direct effect on residents' support for Airbnb, and tourism more generally, than the dampening effect of Airbnb's negative impacts. Quality of life was not found to have a significant mediating effect on these relationships, a finding that contradicts previous discourse and opens up avenues for future research on the role of this important construct.