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Griffith University tourism research institute launched
Griffith University will lead and shape the Australian tourism landscape into the future through 'vital' research conducted under the banner of its all-new Griffith Institute for Tourism (GIFT).
Unveiled this week at Griffith’s Gold Coast campus by Queensland Tourism and Major Events Minister Jann Stuckey, GIFT will have relevance and outcomes effective at both academic and industry levels.
Launching the GIFT initiative, Minister Stuckey stated “the importance of tourism to the national economy can never be understated and it’s extremely satisfying to see a Queensland institution become a vital conduit between government, industry and marketing organisations within the sector.
“As an international knowledge provider, the Griffith Institute for Tourism is well positioned to bring about positive, sustainable change within an industry worth more than $22 billion to the Queensland economy.”
Inaugural Director of GIFT, Professor Susanne Becken, will lead a research team with a dedicated focus on sustainable tourism.
Professor Susanne Becken stated “the Griffith Institute for Tourism is engaged with local, national and international industry organisations, academic institutions and other organisations which share our commitment to making a difference for a sustainable tourism sector.”
Minister Stuckey also highlighted the new institute’s appropriate location, adding “(Queensland) attracts more than 11 million visitors annually, forming a large proportion of Queensland’s collective tally from interstate and overseas each year.”
Established to undertake and disseminate world-leading research in tourism, GIFT is also making major operational headway.
Strategic alignments are being formed with United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), plus a memorandum of understanding is already at an advanced stage with Gold Coast City Council, Gold Coast Tourism, as well as international tourism and environmental management and advisory group, EC3 Global.
The charter of GIFT’s strategic purpose will be determined by an advisory board chaired by tourism industry heavyweight and Griffith University lecturer, Don Morris AO.
Professor Becken added “the initial focus of research at GIFT will be the customer experience, China tourism, water and energy efficiency in tourism, indigenous tourism attractions and education, and tourism in natural areas.
“Excellence draws excellence and already GIFT is attracting world-class academics keen to advance and share their expertise under the banner of GIFT for the benefit of the entire tourism industry.”
Reinforcing the research epicentre status of GIFT, a second white paper on water, that was supported by the EarthCheck Research Institute (ERI), together with Ecolab (ECL), was last week presented by Professor Susanne Becken during a lecture in Hong Kong to mark World Water Day 2014.
The paper titled, From Challenges to Solutions: Providing the Business Case, shows that water and its combined effect with energy use could become the most contested resource of the future, calling on the tourism industry – a heavy user of water - to act fast.
For more information visit www.griffith.edu.au/business-government/griffith-institute-tourism
21st March 2014 - EARTHCHECK EVENT TO ADDRESS TOURISM SUSTAINABILITY
4th September 2013 - TOURISM MUST PAY ITS DUES TO THE ENVIRONMENT
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