Bournemouth University (BU) has announced the establishment of the John Kent Institute in Tourism following a substantial donation by the youtravel.com chief executive.
The aim of the new institute will be to establish a programme of internationally significant tourism research through a series of PhDs. It will also complement the work of the university’s School of Services Management, which is home to the International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research (ICTHR), by attracting high-calibre students to BU.
Kent, who was named as a BU visiting fellow earlier this month, said: “I am delighted to support the innovative research in tourism that is undertaken at Bournemouth University.
“I have been particularly interested in the further development of research in tourism marketing and e-tourism for which the university has developed an enviable international reputation.”
Bournemouth University vice-chancellor Professor Curran said: “This new BU-based Institute will fund a considerable number of PhD studentships in tourism research, commencing with 11 over the next four years.
“This is a major initiative in tourism research that has been made possible by the generosity and vision of John Kent. John is an entrepreneurial pioneer of e-tourism and an enthusiastic supporter of tourism research at BU.
“While the studentships will focus on tourism, they will take advantage of our intellectual breadth and help us to develop activities in areas as diverse as tourism and health; tourism and economics; tourism and climate change; tourism and psychology; and tourism and communication.”
ICTHR deputy director Professor Dimitrios Buhalis said: “It is always a great pleasure and exciting challenge to work with John Kent and it will be a great opportunity to take advantage of his vision, innovation and industry networks to increase the relevance and impact of our research.
“We look forward to developing research-based tourism and hospitality innovations and to work even more closely with John.”