Executive Committee

Your Committee

clairehaventangCo-Chair: Dr Claire Haven Tang, Cardiff Metropolitan University

Claire is a Reader in Tourism & Management at Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Cardiff School of Management in the Welsh Centre for Tourism Research where she researches issues around destination development, tourism SMEs, Sense of Place, rural tourism, event tourism, food tourism and human resource development.  Claire is the Research Degree Co-ordinator for Cardiff School of Management and supervises a number of PhD students, alongside teaching on a range of modules across the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.  Projects undertaken for MAKE UK (formerly EEF), Welsh Government, Football Association of Wales, Cardiff County Council, Tourism Training Forum for Wales, Capital Region Tourism, People 1st, Visit Wales, Monmouthshire County Council and Adventa include: exploring the food supply chain in Wales, economic impact evaluation of the UEFA Champions League Finals & Volvo Ocean Race, best practice in business and event tourism, labour market assessments, tourism industry training provision, school student perceptions of tourism careers and developing a Sense of Monmouthshire for tourism businesses.  Claire was a member of the Visit Wales Digital Tourism Business Project Steering Group (2010-2014) and has previously worked in the National Audit Office, on projects involving the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.  She has been involved in the work of the Association for Tourism in Higher Education (ATHE) since 2011 and is currently Co-Chair.

Co-Chair: Dr Clare Weeden, University of Brighton

Dr Clare Weeden is a Principal Lecturer in Tourism and Marketing at the University of Brighton. After twelve years in the international hospitality industry, and on completion of an MBA, Clare was appointed as a lecturer at the University of Brighton. She later completed her PhD at the University of Glasgow, which explored the holiday choices of ethical consumers using the personal values construct. Clare teaches subjects related to ethics and social responsibility, in contexts such as cruise tourism, impacts of tourism, consumer behaviour and destination marketing. Her research interests are broadly in these areas, and in 2013 she published her monograph Responsible Tourist Behaviour. Clare also co-edited ‘Managing Ethical Consumption in Tourism’. Her latest book is Cruise Ship Tourism (2nd ed.). She is the Editor-in-Chief for Tourism and Hospitality Research, and on the editorial boards of Tourism in Marine Environments, and Tourism Recreation Research. Clare is an experienced PhD supervisor and examiner, and welcomes enquiries from potential candidates interested in exploring the nexus of ethics, tourism, consumer behaviour, marketing and critical cruise studies.

duncan-tylerVice Chair-Treasurer: Dr Duncan Tyler, London South Bank University

Dr. Duncan Tyler is Associate Professor and formerly Head of the Division for Urban, Environment and Leisure Studies at London South Bank University. He has taught tourism development and policy issues since the early 1990s when he joined the University from the field of tourism development consultancy having done town planning and business planning projects for tourist resorts around the word. Specifically, Duncan’s teaching and research interests are around tourism and social justice, and applies theories of lobbying and campaigning to tourism impact issues. His PhD was in lobbying networks and tactics in English Tourism Policy Development around the Millennium. Duncan’s other research interests are in urban tourism and city marketing and he has been a long term critic of the boosterist approach to tourism development in cities that has led to the recent debates about overtourism.

Vice Chair-Secretary: Professor Robert Maitland, University of Westminster

Robert Maitland is Emeritus Professor of City Tourism at the University of Westminster, London. He is an urban economist and after reading Economics at the University of Cambridge, and studying City Planning at the University of Nottingham, Robert worked in planning in London before becoming an academic. He established tourism programmes at Westminster and led the first undergraduate and Masters programmes before focusing on doctoral programmes and research.

His research investigates how tourism shapes cities and cities shape tourism, and his particular interests are the tourist experience of cities, especially world cities, national capitals and heritage cities, with an emphasis on tourism and everyday life. He has advised the British government and national tourism organisations on projects including tourism and city regeneration, planning policy for leisure and tourism, the effectiveness of tourism marketing, and public intervention in the tourism sector. He has been involved in ATHE since its inception, and was previously Vice Chair and Chair.


Executive Team Members

Xavier Font profileProfessor Xavier Font, University of Surrey

Dr Xavier Font is professor of Sustainability Marketing at the University of Surrey. He researches and develops methods of sustainable tourism production and consumption. He has published widely about sustainable tourism certification, and has consulted on sustainable product development, marketing and communication for several United Nations agencies, the International Finance Corporation, the European Commission, VisitEngland, Fáilte Ireland, VisitWales, VisitScotland and WWF amongst others.  He has supervised 16 PhDs to completion. He co-edits the Journal of Sustainable Tourism (ABS 3*, IF 3.329). He has conducted over 140 courses for more than 2500 businesses on how to market and communicate sustainability, see www.travindy.com.

Lisa Gorton, Leeds Beckett University

Lisa worked for 17 years in Industry before qualifying to teach in post-compulsory education and embarking upon her recent career within higher education. Her experience within the world of travel and tourism encompassed small and large tourism organisations within both the tour operating and retail distribution sector where she led national and international sales teams.

She now directs a suite of tourism programmes at Leeds Beckett University and is actively involved in the design, delivery and teaching of these under-graduate programmes.  Her main teaching interests lie in the areas of operational and strategic management.

Over the past few years she has been involved in action research around approaches to teaching, learning and assessment: Her current doctoral studies stem from this ongoing involvement and interest in pedagogy and she is investigating student and tutor perspectives about the role of cooperative learning environments.

She is a Senior Fellow of HE Advance and an external examiner within the discipline.

Ross Tinsley 800x730-2Dr Ross Tinsley, Edinburgh Napier University 

Dr Ross Tinsley is undergraduate programme leader for tourism and lecturer at Edinburgh Napier University. Prior to that he taught research methods and tourism in Switzerland. His main teaching themes are destination marketing and management as well as tourism, society and culture.

His research focuses on destination development through entrepreneurship and cultural consumption. His current work centres on post-secularism in festivals and events. He has also researched and published on small tourism business networks and destination development as part of his PhD. His co-authored paper Tinsley & Lynch 2001 was a significant early contribution to that field.

As well as serving on the Executive Committee for the Association of Tourism in Higher Education (ATHE) since 2016, he also chairs the Tourism Society Scotland chapter and is a senior fellow of HE Advance.


KeithProfessor (Emeritus) Keith Wilkes, Bournemouth University

Keith’s career took him from University College, Swansea, where he completed his undergraduate degree, to doctoral research at University of Liverpool and then to Bournemouth University. He played a key role in the development of tourism education for 30 years holding key senior management positions which encompassed course development and quality, the student experience, enterprise and income generation and staff management. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Keith’s research focused on tourism development, visitor attractions, heritage management and tourism education and was involved in cultivating a future generation of tourism researchers. He supervised PhD students in an eclectic range of topics including nature-based tourism, visitor motivation and behaviour at garden attractions and World Heritage Sites, such as Thailand and The Jurassic Coast. Other topics included post-conflict tourism, community-based festivals, the social impacts of the 2008 UEFA Championship, urban regeneration and the 2012 Olympics and the values of UK heritage providers and consumers.

Keith has been a member of the Association for Tourism in Higher Education (ATHE) Executive Committee since the early 1990s variously as Member, Secretary and Chair.


Co-opted Members

Professor Chris Cooper, Leeds Beckett University

Chris Cooper is Professor in the School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management Leeds Beckett University in the UK. He gained his undergraduate degree and PhD in Geography from University College London.

Chris has more than thirty years’ experience in tourism and has worked as a researcher and teacher in every region of the world. He gained experience in tour operation working for Thomson Travel before returning to academic life.

Chris was Co-Founder of Progress in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation Research and the International Journal of Tourism Research and is now the Co-Editor of Current Issues In Tourism. He is a member of the editorial board for leading tourism, hospitality and leisure journals and has authored a number of leading text and research books in tourism. He is the co-series editor of the influential Channel View book series ‘Aspects of Tourism’.

Chris works with international agencies including the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the European Union, the International Labour Organization, the OECD, the Inter American Development Bank and ASEAN. He held the Chair of the UNWTO’s Education Council from 2005 – 2007 and was awarded the United Nations Ulysses Medal for contributions to tourism education and policy in 2009.

Brandon Crimes, Tourism Research Matters



Dr Ilaria Pappalepore, University of Westminster

Ilaria Pappalepore is senior lecturer in events and tourism in the School of Architecture and Cities, University of Westminster, London. Prior to joining the University of Westminster, Ilaria worked at the Lille Development Agency, France, and later as course leader and senior lecturer in Tourism at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, UK. Her research interests include urban tourism; cultural events; creative industries; and urban regeneration. Since completing her PhD on ‘tourism development in creative, non-central areas in London’ in 2010, Ilaria has worked on a number of research projects in leisure, tourism and events. She was lead investigator for a study on the impact of London 2012 on small creative organisations in East London funded by the International Olympic Committee. Ilaria is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a member of the Association of Tourism in Higher Education’s executive committee.



Merz Hoare, ATHE Administrator

Mercedita (Merz) Hoare is a former University of Brighton staff with over 15 years’ experience of organising international academic conferences, managing partnership programmes, monitoring research projects, as well as, providing editorial assistance to a number of edited books, monographs and academic journals.

Merz has been working with ATHE since 2008 providing administrative support.  She has a first degree in business administration (major in accounting) and a post graduate degree in International Event Management.