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Stuart (Stu) Hayes

Doctoral Research AbstractStu Hayes

Tourism education is often conceptualised within a vocational/applied framework, with the aims of the curriculum focussing predominately on developing ‘work-ready’ leaders (Dredge, 2016). Alternatively, and perhaps more aligned with the traditional purpose of a university education, there are those who suggest that a tourism curriculum which balances vocational and liberal knowledge (Tribe, 2002) is better suited to nurturing the sort of transformed human being required to lead tourism in a supercomplex world (Barnett, 2000; Tribe, 2002; Airey, 2015). In this conceptualisation future tourism leaders are understood in terms of their ability to perform jobs technically well and, at the same time, understand the broader responsibilities for people and places that come with leading tourism (e.g. Tribe, 2002). My own experiences of postgraduate tourism education demonstrate that such transformative aims are indeed achievable at the cognitive level, but a further question remains: What, in terms of understanding transformation at the effect level, do graduates actually do with what they learned and, moreover, do their actions provide evidence to support curriculum aims?

Using a case study approach this research will examine a taught Masters course delivered at a New Zealand university with the aim of better understanding how alumni and staff involved with the programme reflect on the role and influence of contemporary tourism education. In doing so this research seeks to provide some much needed empirical insights into the conditions required for tourism education to successfully engender student transformation, particularly within a multi-disciplinary field, and the flow on affects of this to the tourism world(s) (Airey et al., 2015). Furthermore, within the current neoliberal Higher Education environment where tourism education programmes are judged according to narrow and quantitative metrics (Airey et al., 2015), this research will investigate whether or not the impact and influence of tourism scholarship, as evidenced in the qualitative stories of graduate engagement within and through sustainable tourism, could offer an alternative yet arguably more valuable tool for evaluation.


Master of Tourism, University of Otago, New Zealand (2016)
Graduate Diploma in Teaching, Auckland University (2009)
Bachelor of Arts in Tourism Studies, University of Central Lancashire, UK (1998)
Higher National Diploma in Travel and Tourism, Grimsby College, UK (1996)

Scholarships & Awards

University of Otago Doctoral Scholarship - University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand (2016)

Primary Research Interests

Tourism Education

Curriculum design and pedagogy in tourism education; quality in tourism education; teaching and learning.

Tourist Culture

Tourism/tourists as a worldmaking force; tourist motivation; projections of place and space

Teaching Experience

TOUR411 Tourist Culture (2017)
TOUR423 Advanced Tourism Concepts (2017)
TOUR427 Tourism and Development Ethnographic Fieldschool (2017)
TOUR217 Tourist Behaviour (2015)


Carr, N., & Hayes, S. (2017). A comparison of tourism PhD Students' publication records and university of study. Tourism Management Perspectives, 23, 151-153.

Carr, N., & Hayes, S. (2017). An analysis of tourism PhD students’ publication records against the background of “publish or perish”. Anatolia, 1-3.

Carr, N., & Hayes, S. (2017). An analysis of trends in Ph. D. research in tourism. Tourism Recreation Research, 42(1), 32-44.

Hayes, S., & Lovelock, B. (2016). ‘Demystifying ‘worldmaking: exploring New Zealand’s clean and green imaginary through the lens of angling tourists. Tourism Recreation Research, 1-12.

Hayes, S., & Lovelock, B. (2016). Analysis of the recreational freshwater angling behaviours of overseas visitors to New Zealand. Dunedin, New Zealand. Department of Tourism, University of Otago.


Hayes, S. (2017). Tourism Education: A critical analysis, CAUTHE Conference, Otago University, New Zealand

Professional Memberships

Council for Australasian University Tourism & Hospitality Education (2017-)

Industry Experience

Stu has 15 years experience working in the tourism and hospitality sectors in the UK and Western Europe where he has undertaken a variety of managerial and non-managerial roles in organisations such as the Youth Hostel Association and Siblu Holidays (formerly Haven Europe).