December 2020
Volume 21, Issue 5
Newsletter of School of Hotel & Tourism Management
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
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Application of Neuroscience Technology in Hospitality and Tourism Research Discussed at SHTM
Recent developments in neuroscience are gradually revealing the secrets of human brain and empowering researchers to uncover the underlying mechanisms behind human behaviour. The marriage between neuroscience and hospitality and tourism is believed to offer an alternative means to understand tourists' behaviour.

The Hospitality and Tourism Research Centre (HTRC) of the SHTM organised and hosted a workshop entitled "Application of Neuroscience Approach in Hospitality and Tourism Research" on 18 November 2020, during which the SHTM research team shared basic technologies in neuroscience and discussed the prospects for their application in hospitality and tourism research.

The workshop was led by Dr Mimi Li, SHTM Associate Professor, who, together with her research assistant Mr Guyang Lin, introduced the working principles, technical advantages, specific applications and experimental protocol of electroencephalography (EEG), a type of neuroimaging technique. Dr Mimi Li and SHTM Assistant Professor Dr Youngjoon Choi then shared their respective research using this new technique, providing attendees with a more intuitive understanding of the neuroscientific approach in hospitality and tourism research. The workshop also featured a live demonstration by the EEG equipment supplier with enthusiastic participation from attendees.

The afternoon session of the workshop featured an introduction and demonstration of eye-tracking (EM) technique. EM is a sensor technology for measuring eye positions and movements, and is widely used in a variety of disciplines including cognitive science, human-computer interaction and marketing research. Although EM is not a neuroscientific method, it is commonly regarded as an auxiliary technique used in concert with neuroimaging. Through the presentation by the EM equipment supplier, attendees gained a basic idea of the working principles and specific applications of EM and the operation of EM instruments. They also had the opportunity to take a closer look at the device and to experience the feeling of wearing an EM device first-hand.

The "Application of Neuroscience Approach in Hospitality and Tourism Research" workshop not only provided an introduction to a new field and methodology, but also emphasised an interactive practice to stimulate attendees' interest and enthusiasm. The SHTM was delighted to host the workshop and looks forward to a deeper and broader interdisciplinary collaboration to innovate a brand-new vision.

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