Emprendimiento de oportunidad o necesidad en el turismo: El caso de cinco Pueblos Mágicos de México

Michelle Texis Flores, Karla Susana Barrón Arreola, Raúl Carrasco Orozco


Se relacionan las oportunidades de emprendimiento y la designación de Pueblo Mágico (PM) en cinco localidades. Partiendo de las características de las empresas relacionadas con el turismo, se determina la probabilidad (logit) de que los emprendimientos resulten de oportunidades de negocio. La creación de empresas ha sido más dinámica a partir del reconocimiento como PM, en el caso de Cholula, Puebla; en el resto de los PMs estudiados los resultados no son concluyentes. Se observan emprendimientos importantes en microempresas y autoempleo en el sector informal. La perdurabilidad de los emprendimientos, muestra empresas consolidadas y actores importantes en la dinámica local.


In Mexico, the recognition of the economic, social and cultural potential of tourism has led to the intervention of public policy makers, one of the most outstanding strategies from the federal level is the Magic Towns Program. The studies that have originated around the effects of this tourist program agree that there has been a significant influx of tourists to the locations recognized with the badge. From the point of view of entrepreneurship, this event represents a favorable stimulus for the creation of enterprises, consequently, ventures arising from the opportunities created by the new dynamism of the localities originate. Therefore, the aim is analyses relationship between entrepreneurship opportunities based on the effect of the “Magic Town” designation in five locations in Mexico included in this program: Tecate, Baja California; Todos Santos, Baja California Sur; Sayulita, Nayarit; Cholula, Puebla, and Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo.

There is an extensive literature on the hypotheses of the causes of entrepreneurship that are distinguished by the composition of opposite scenarios. On the one hand, convenient economic conditions for starting a business, the pull effect. On the other hand, ventures in recessive contexts that are the result of unemployment are evidence of the push effect.

Mexico stands out as a country where new enterprises are the result of individual efforts rather than collective actions, which explains, in part, the predominance of microenterprises in the business structure of this country. The local implications from the development of tourism are related to its dragging capacity over other economic sectors and the participation of a significant number of micro and small enterprises that provide benefits to vulnerable groups of society, consequently, this activity has been positioned as a strategic element in matters of sustainable development in lagging regions or as a complement in more dynamic economies. Entrepreneurship because of tourism activity has a direct relationship with the identity of the region and commitment to the environment and society.

The tourist potential is integrated by the resources, but also by the accessibility and equipment. In this sense, the action of the federal government in the design of public policy focused on tourism activity and the activism of the entrepreneurs themselves are necessary in the configuration of local entrepreneurship. The efforts to promote tourist specialization of each state of Mexico are consolidated in the Magic Towns Program, awarded by the Federal Ministry of Tourism (SECTUR) since 2001. Mexico have 132 Magic Towns that have been recognized in the country, all states have at least one Magic Town, highlight Puebla, Estado de México, Michoacán, and Jalisco for hoarding more than seven Magic Towns in their respective territory.

From the data of the tourist destinations collected within project on the characteristics of the enterprises related to tourism, a binary response model-logit, is estimated to determine the probability that the enterprises established in the Magic Towns of study are the result of the visualization of business opportunities. For data collections, a questionnaire was used that captures aspects of the characteristics of the enterprises in three dimensions: Company, Employees, and; Magic Town. The sample that was formed is of 1,223 enterprises dedicated to the tourist offer according to the characteristics and related branches of activity considered in the Satellite Account of Tourism of Mexico: (46) retail trade, (71) cultural recreation services and sports, and other recreation services, (72) temporary accommodation and food and beverage preparation services. The sample is made up of 109 enterprises from Tecate, 195 from Todos Santos, 114 from Sayulita, 626 from Cholula and 179 from Isla Mujeres. The calculation of the sample was carried out taking into account the number of economic units concentrated in the corresponding municipalities, according to the National Statistical Directory of Economic Units (DENUE 2016) with a confidence level of 95% and a margin of error of 5.  

The model of qualitative endogenous variable of binary choice logit is one of the methodology allows working with two categories in the endogenous variable to determine the possibilities of the option under study being presented from a set of enterprises variables that is related to its characterization. The relationships established in the econometric model are: dependent variable, the company emerged for a reason of opportunity. Independent variable, Binary variable 1 if the company emerged after the locality has been named as PM. Binary variable 2 if the company has a formal registration. Explanatory variable number of employees.

According to the results, there is evidence to suppose that the creation of enterprises has been more dynamic from the recognition that the locality obtained as a magical town, in the case of the magical town of Cholula, Puebla. In the rest of the Magic Towns that are part of the study, the results are not conclusive.The average partial effects are considered the cases of Cholula and Isla Mujeres because they show evidence of statistical significance in the estimated parameters, the results indicate that the probability that an opportunity firm arises increases by 8% when the firm started operations after the designation of PM.From the descriptive analysis and the statistical exercises that were made based on the proposed discrete choice model, evidence was found to suppose that the creation of firms has been more dynamic since the locality received the appointment of Magic Town, this evidence takes as reference the case of Cholula.

However, the permanence of the firms that originated prior to the Magic Town designation are a reference of establishments that have remained in the market is indicative of consolidated enterprises and therefore important players in the local dynamics. On the other hand, significant entrepreneurial activity is observed in the microenterprise and self-employment sector in the informal sector.

Since it has been shown that entrepreneurship is one of the best ways for regions to grow economically, it is pertinent to take advantage of the fact that the strategy of Magic Town Program has been successful in aspects of inclusion to strengthen and/or consolidate a local entrepreneurial base. These entrepreneurs are linked to activities in their place of origin that add a sense of identity with the region, Therefore, it is essential to pay attention to small enterprises, microenterprises, and individual self-employment efforts, which have characterized the business structure of the localities and the country, as well as to observe the institutional failures that cause the operation of the informal sector.

© Revista de estudios regionales 2014 Universidades Públicas de Andalucía