Our research focuses on understanding event, hotel, sport and tourism management, and real estate and property development - and the role these industries play in our lives. Through our research, the Department aims to contribute to sustainability, engender corporate social responsibility, influence social and government policies, and promote best practice in our field. We have close ties with the Griffith Institute for Tourism.
Current research projects
Some of our current research projects and collaborations across our disciplines are listed below:
Title: 'Driving IT innovation through student/industry partnerships to deliver sustainable nature-based tourism experiences'
Investigators: Associate Professor Alexandra Coghlan, Dr Leigh-Ellen Potter, Professor Betty Weiler
Overview: Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality hold much promise in delivering innovative tourist experiences, and with the right design tools, can be used to make tourism more sustainable. This interdisciplinary project between tourism and IT looks at how student/industry partnership can drive IT-innovation in tourism, reducing the risk for industry involvement in new product design, providing low cost IT-products that enhance the tourist experience, developing capacity among academics and students, and engaging with industry. Current projects involve designing a fun and interactive VR game for reef tourism, and AR-enhanced interpretation for rainforest walks.
Title: 'Economic value of community club-based sport: An Australian perspective'
Investigators: Professor Chris Gratton, Professor Graham Cuskelly, Professor Kristine Toohey, Professor James Skinner, Dr Daniel Lock
Overview: Sport is widely perceived to generate social benefits. These include individual impacts: improved physical health and fitness, increased subject well-being, and increased educational performance; and broader community impacts such as increased social capital and reduced crime and anti-social behaviour. This research attempts to measure the economic value of such benefits. The aim of the study is to develop a valid model that will provide an economic estimate (i.e. dollar value) of the broader social benefits associated with the provision of, and participation in, community club-based organised sport to Australian society.
Industry partners: Australian Sports Commission
Title: 'Enhancing student employability skills through virtual field trips'
Investigators: Associate Professor Anoop Patiar, Dr Sandie Kensbock, Dr Ying Wang, Dr Hugh Wilkins, Dr Pierre Benckendorff, Dr Richard Robinson, Dr Andy Lee, Dr Edmund Goh and Dr Scott Richardson
Overview: The hospitality industry requires work ready graduates who can cope with real world problems. Increasing student numbers, time limitations and demand for online alternatives to face to face learning experiences has led to technology enhanced solutions to practice-based learning in hospitality. This project develops, evaluates and promotes virtual field trips (VFTs) and related pedagogies as tools to advance graduate employability skills and learning outcomes, and establishes authentic connections between theory and practice. VFTs provide an alternative pedagogical approach to blending academic and practical learning by offering rich information, flexible access and an authentic learning experience.
- Hotels: Intercontinental Hotel Double Bay,Sofitel Brisbane, Marriott Surfers Paradise,Cordis Hotel Hong Kong, W Hotels Hong Kong, Sunrise Kempinski Hotel, Zhuo Zheng Hotel - Baoding, The May Fair Hotel - London.
- Restaurants: Esquire Restaurant, Arriva Restaurant, Flying Fish Restaurant, Sake Restaurant & Bar
- Wineries: Ocean View Estates Winery and Restaurant,Sandalford Winery, Swan Valley
- Sustainability Consulting: EarthCheck
Real estate and property development
Title: 'Crime in high rise buildings in Surfers Paradise'
Investigators: Associate Professor Michael Townsley, Dr Sacha Reid, Dr Danielle Reynald and Dr John Rynne
Overview: This research examines risky facilities within high-density communities. The following research questions were explored: Are there certain buildings that host a disproportionate volume of crime for different crime types? What distinguishes these buildings from others that do not? What is the relationship between building management and the nature of crime? Does physical security play a role in the differences between buildings? What is the relationship between guardianship offered by fellow residents and the volume and nature of crime? Do management style and security measures influence the perception of safety and incidences of crime within high-rise buildings?
Title: 'A comparison of sport event participation outcomes across Qatar and Australia'
Investigators: Associate Professor Kevin Filo, Dr Millicent Kennelly, Dr Daniel Lock, Associate Professor Rana Sobh, Dr Najam Saqib, Dr Nikolaos Theodorakis
Overview: Participation in sport events can lead to temporary increases in peoples’ wellbeing and quality of life, while there is also evidence suggesting longer-term physical health benefits arising from sustained exercise. There is limited understanding of how cross-cultural consumption patterns (e.g., Qatar and Australia) influence the motivation, behaviour and outcomes of participation in these events. Accordingly, the purpose of this research is to examine the influence of patterns of consumption on the motives, behaviour (e.g., physical activity; repeat participation) and outcomes (e.g., wellbeing; quality of life) of sport event participants in Qatar and Australia.