President's Message


Dear Fellows

Greetings to you all – and I hope this finds each of you in good spirits.

This newsletter contains information on  1) The Taiwan Conference, 2) a new Academy initiative Tourism Experts without Borders, and 3) Information about Fellows, Nominees and Emerging Scholars.

The Taiwan Conference

Planning is proceeding well for the Taiwan conference – Building Inter-Disciplinary Bridges in Tourism Research. Please see the conference section of the website for the latest conference schedule. We will spend the nights of June 5 and 6 at the Grand Hotel in Taipei and the remainder of the conference (June 7-10) at the Nice Prince Hotel in Chiayi. This year various tours will occur at the beginning and end of the conference rather than in the middle as usual. Information on flights is still pending but will be available soon.

Please fill out the hotel forms that the Secretariat will soon be sending to you.

If you have any items you would like to place on the Agenda for the Business Meetings in Taiwan please send them to me (psheldon@hawaii.edu) and I will add them to the draft Agenda.

Tourism Experts without Borders (TEB)

Modeled after Médecins sans Frontières, we are launching an initiative entitled Tourism Experts without Borders (TEB). TEB aims to provide assistance and transfer of tourism knowledge to destinations and regions in need. This initiative came from a recent conversation with Dimitrios Buhalis at Bournemouth University in the UK.  Dimitrios has agreed to chair the Task Force that will develop this concept into reality.  We are looking for other Fellows with an interest in contributing volunteer work in regions in need to develop the concept and contribute to its implementation.

The initiative recognizes the responsibility of the Academy to share its knowledge and resources with destinations and regions where knowledge structures are insufficient or even non-existent.  It will develop local expertise to support tourism development and management. The TEB will particularly aim to support regions in crisis needing to rebuild their tourism industry.  Academy Fellows will be invited to volunteer their services to aid these regions and work with local authorities and knowledge providers to build local and sustainable expertise to support regional prosperity. The TEB project will involve: 1)  Regions that can benefit from its services 2) Volunteer tourism experts willing to transfer their knowledge and expertise and 3)  Support Organizations such as airlines and hospitality companies to provide travel and accommodation costs.

Please contact Dimitrios if you would like to work on the TEB Task Force. His email is dbuhalis@bournemouth.ac.uk.  I would like to sincerely thank Dimitrios for taking the lead on this worthwhile project.

Fellows, Nominees and Emerging Scholars

John Pigram, one of our long time Fellows passed away in January 2011. He will be sorely missed, but his many contributions to the Academy and to the field of tourism will stay alive to inspire us. Dick Butler has written an obituary honoring John in this newsletter. We will also honor John’s memory at the Academy meeting in Taiwan.

Peter Murphy has decided to end his affiliation with the Academy as he moves on to a retired life.  Peter has been an important part of the Academy for many years and I know he will be missed very much by his colleagues. Peter, thank you for all your contributions over the years to both the Academy and tourism research. We wish you and your wife well in the future.

Background materials on this year’s eleven Nominees are on the website for your review (username and password will be sent in a separate email).  Each nominee will make a 20 minute presentation on their research at the conference. If you nominated someone, please be sure they understand that their presentation should be a reflective summary of their research and not an attempt to sell themselves. The final vote will be taken after the conference is over.

This year two excellent Emerging Scholars will join us to present their work at the Taiwan conference. Both are researching in cutting edge fields. Ulrike Gretzel, formerly from Texas A&M University and currently from University of Wollongong, Australia has a background in consumer behavior and technology and is an expert on social networking and tourism. Susanne Becken from Lincoln University, New Zealand has a background in resource management and is an expert on tourism and climate change and tourism and oil. Please welcome them both in Taiwan.

We will be continuing to provide updates on the Taiwan conference as they become available.

Looking forward to seeing you soon in Taipei.

With best wishes