A new look at tourism is being supported by a university research centre which has just opened for business.

Edinburgh Napier University has opened The Tourism Research Centre which will allow a number of academics from Napier along with visiting academics and industry personnel to collaborate on researching a recovery model for Scotland’s tourism sector. The research will cover aspects of environmental and social impact relating to tourism.

Edinburgh Napier’s Professor Anna Leask said: “In tourism and events, successful recovery from the past two years involves not only attracting enough visitors but equally tackling pre-pandemic concerns around environmental and social impacts. Scotland has set ambitious goals to meet both aspects in the coming years and become a world-leading example for others. 

“The aim of the Tourism Research Centre is to support the sector in this aim by producing research for the country’s recovery and development as a top tourist destination.”

Professor Anna Leask form the Business School photographed for the staff profile series.


Members of the industry have already expressed their excitement about the Centre

Mr Marc Crothall, CEO of the Scottish Tourism Alliance (STA) said: “The intelligence gathered via the TRC, and the industry having access to it, will contribute significantly to helping Scotland achieving our collective ambition, as set out in Scotland Outlook 2030, of becoming a world leader in 21st century tourism.”

Mr David Cochrane, MBE, Chief Executive of the Hospitality Industry Trust (HIT) Scotland emphasised the TRC’s crucial role in supporting the sector. 

He said: “The industry thrives on data and having the new Tourism Research Centre will add great value to the decision-making of this dynamic industry post-Covid.” 

Executive director of UKHospitality Scotland, Mr Leon Thompson, equally shared his enthusiasm about the Centre. 

He said: “As we seek to address the challenges hospitality faces right now, it has never been more important for business and academia to work together. Edinburgh Napier University’s Tourism Research Centre is an excellent resource which will ensure even greater collaboration as we support our sector towards recovery. The TRC also enables us to highlight the great achievements of our dynamic sector and, through partnership, build a very bright future for hospitality in Scotland.”

Visitors can engage with the Centre: learn more about the researchers and research themes; keep up with the news; and read publications – including the latest output entitled, Covid and Innovation within Edinburgh’s Festivals [Festivals and Events (napier.ac.uk)] by Prof. Jane Ali-Knight, Prof. Kristen Holmes, Dr Gary Kerr and Ms Hannah Stewart.