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Impactful research

Research themes

For decades, Bournemouth University has been widely recognised as a leader in tourism and hospitality research. With 32 academic staff, we are one of the largest departments of this kind in the world. We have a vibrant research culture with specialists covering most areas of research in tourism and hospitality, making it a lively and stimulating environment in which to work and study.

Our staff are actively involved in wide-ranging, internationally recognised research, creating a great breadth of experience and knowledge. We apply innovative and multidisciplinary approaches to co-create knowledge with practitioners and students. Research results are disseminated in top academic journals and at international conferences. Many staff members work closely with practitioners to ensure that the research undertaken has relevance and impact for both commercial and public-sector organisations. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, 100% of our research was rated as world leading. 

We pride ourselves on our successful collaboration and partnerships with world-class leaders. Throughout our long history, our staff have carried out work for international agencies (e.g. the EU, UNEP, UNWTO, USAID, WWF) and national governments around the world. We also collaborate closely with a range of international, national and local businesses. This reflects the widespread reach of our research. The key research strengths of the department include:

  • Management, marketing and etourism
  • Tourism development, impact and economic modelling
  • Culture, experience and heritage
  • Food, nutrition and wellbeing
  • Hospitality management and marketing

Management, marketing and etourism

Research into management and human resources, as well as marketing and technology for tourism and hospitality, has been the focus for several years. We examine marketing and customer relationships in the tourism and hospitality context. The team includes world experts in eTourism and tourism-related technologies, having pioneered eTourism research and published some of the most widely quoted papers. Our texts are used for teaching students and practitioners around the world and are used by professionals to develop eTourism strategies.

Tourism development, impact and economic modelling

The department is home to some of the world’s leading experts in tourism impact modelling. It combines a wealth of experience in transferring such evidence into relevant policy advice for tourism development and planning. The team has extensive global experience of conducting tourism impact analyses, modelling demand and forecasting tourism; has pioneered the methods used to estimate tourism impacts; and is at the forefront of driving new ideas and techniques across the industry and academia.

Culture, experience and heritage

The team working in this area have focused on different aspect of the visitor experience. They have investigated visitors’ perceptions and consumption of culture and heritage products, and the rejuvenation of tourism sites. Religion and aspects of dark tourism have been key areas of research. Tourist interaction with wildlife is an added dimension in the theme of experience.

Food, nutrition and wellbeing

Staff working in this area have a wealth of experience in both food service and nutrition, and managing projects ranges from large scale to those for SMEs. They have investigated a number of issues, including food wastage and how it might be reduced; and alternative cost-effective feeding strategies, such as making a food choice at the time of consumption to help improve patients’ food intake and increase their nutritional status. They have also explored obesity and the dietary habits of students. This provided invaluable information to allow service providers to optimise their approach.

Hospitality management and marketing

The team have studied all aspects of the hospitality industry from hotels, restaurants and catering, to marketing and human resources within the industry. It has considerable expertise in the management, marketing and distribution channels of hospitality organisations and the development of multichannel strategies for stakeholders in the hospitality industry. It has challenged the existing approaches to hospitality management by developing the concept of hospitality as a consumer experience, including the notion of hospitality as hospitable behaviour and hospitable space.