This area has been established as a unifying context reflective of our core areas of critical research, consultancy and academic practices in tourism, hospitality, events, leisure and sport – policy, practice and development, through which we intend to add value and enhance impact opportunities in the future.
Our vision is to engage in the pursuit of intellectual excellence and impactful practices through critical scholarship in tourism, hospitality, events, leisure and sport.
Tourism, hospitality, events, leisure and sport are performed broadly through the active engagement of people as consumers or service providers, policy makers and destination communities. Through our critical scholarship and multi-disciplinary approaches, we seek to make a difference to the quality of decision making that underpins the development and management of these sectors and to the understanding of the socio-economic, cultural and natural environments in which these occur. For instance, our peer-to-peer (P2P) capacity building approach encompasses the development of partnerships aimed at mutually beneficial policy and practice outcomes for us and for those we work with.
Development priorities are reshuffled in relation to political agendas, local populations’ needs, levels of power, democracy, social justice and inclusion, protection of local cultural meanings, preservation of natural resources, fair trade principles, poverty reduction strategies, ethics and corporate social responsibility and climate change, which all are dimensions at the core of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Rio+ Agendas.
Within the specific sustainable development realm we have an active presence and over the past 15 years, we have undertaken critical research and provided expert advice to a number of development agencies, governments’ ministries, private and third sector organisations at local, national and international levels.
Amongst our research funders and clients are:
- The World Bank
- The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
- UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
- UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)
- UN Environment Programme (UNEP)
- The European Union (EU)
- The Commonwealth Secretariat
- The Environmental Agency, UK
- South East England Development Agency (SEEDA)
- Sport England
- The Canals and Rivers Trust, UK
- East Africa Tourism Platform
- The Gambia Ministry of Tourism and Culture
- Gambia Tourism Board
- Namibia Tourism Board
- Eastbourne Borough Council.
We work as an open pool and multi-disciplinary group of researchers collaborating with a well-established network of academics as well as practitioners from international agencies, governments, private businesses and NGOs, at local and international level.