The mondialité (globality) of a tourist location is a feature of a given place. If we define globalisation as a process of consolidating links between places in the world, then mondialité is the measure of this. There could therefore be several degrees of mondialité.

The word mondialité first appeared in French in 1960 to express the ‘worldwide character of something’ according to the CNRTL (created by the French National Centre of Textual and Lexical Resources [Centre National de Ressources Textuelles et Lexicales, CNRS], which is attached to the Computer Processing and Analysis of the French Language laboratory [Analyse et Traitement Informatique de la Langue Française – ATILF] / CNRS – Nancy Université). It is also utilised by authors as a process that competes with globalisation when the latter may be standardised. Mondialité in this sense is beneficial and produces diversity: ‘we promote mondialité by re-inhabiting all our spaces, fighting against the folklorisation of difference, reduction, automation. We start with those closest to us, cultivating all aspects of life, reconnecting with the ability to produce, to express, to invent… for all…’ (Ott, 2013). Without joining the debate, our use of the word mondialité reflects the meaning given by the CNRTL.

Mondialité is therefore the feature of places that are part of the globalisation of tourism, i.e. in the spread of this practice throughout the world. Mondialité consists of gauging the diversity of people likely to come in contact in a given place, if the timing is right, which is not always the case. For example, in Salalah, along the coast of Oman, the beach is used in the summer by Saudis, who find it cooler than in their home country, while Europeans go in the winter for warmth and sun (Benjamin Barthe, Le Monde, 13 July 2017). However, in cities where visitor numbers are not (or little) affected by the rhythm of the seasons, people from all over the world come together before the greatest monuments and at key events, such as the changing of the guard in London.

We therefore distinguish (Violier and Taunay, 2019), according to a method based on the analysis of tour operator catalogues (see Globalisation):

  • places of universal mondialité which people from all over the world are likely to visit;
  • places with a high degree of mondialité where people from several, but not all, societies cross paths;
  • places with low mondialité, where people from one or two societies may be in the same place at the same time.

A tourist map of the world based on locations and not nations can therefore be drawn from this approach (Ill. 1).

Ill. 1: La mondialité des lieux touristiques (production by Sigrid Giffon, designed by Philippe Violier; Violier and Taunay, 2019)

Philippe Violier


  • Ott Laurent, 2013, «La Mondialité contre la mondialisation», dans Ott Laurent (dir.), Travail social, les raisons d’agir. Toulouse, Érès, coll. «L’éducation spécialisée au quotidien», p. 161-162.
  • Violier Philippe et Taunay Benjamin, 2019, Les lieux touristiques du Monde. De la mondialisation à la mondialité. Londres, ISTE Editions, 322 p.