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LBS’ student societies organising successful Cocktail Night

La Trobe Business School’s Tourism, Hospitality & Events Society and the Commerce Students’ Association hosted a Business School Cocktail Night. The event was held by the Docklands waterfront at Harbour Kitchen. Over 100 students and their friends gathered to celebrate the hard work and dedication displayed throughout the year. Both La Trobe Business School and the Equity and Diversity Department supported the event. Check out some of the great pictures taken during the evening.

La Trobe Business School encourages all students to become a member of either group as social events such as this will continue throughout the year. Membership also offers inclusion of like-minded individuals that want to make a difference whilst having fun at the same time.

 

La Trobe’s tourism studies garner international recognition

By Warwick Frost

La Trobe University has made the inaugural QS World University Rankings for Hospitality and Leisure Management this year, while a key faculty member recently received an international award for her tourism research.

For the first time, this year’s QS World University Rankings include Hospitality and Leisure Management as a category. From Victoria, Monash University (22) and La Trobe University (50) were included in the top 50. The other four Australian universities recognised were: Griffith University (9), The University of Queensland (12), University of South Australia (27) and Southern Cross University (38).

This comes as we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of La Trobe University and the 21st birthday for our Bachelor of Business in Tourism and Hospitality. It is also significant that Tourism and Hospitality was the only area at La Trobe to be placed in the global top 50.

The rankings are based on academic reputation, employer reputation and research impact. Sixteen of the top 50 institutions are located in Europe, 15 are from North America, 10 from Asia and six from Australia. The University of Nevada – Las Vegas came in at first place.

Many of the universities in the top 10 are specialist institutions, including Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (2) and Swiss Hotel Management School (8).

LBS Associate Professor Jennifer Laing awarded Emerging Scholar of Distinction for 2017

Associate Professor Jennifer Laing of the Department of Management, Sport and Tourism at La Trobe University was recently awarded the Emerging Scholar of Distinction for 2017 by the International Academy for the Study of Tourism. She received the award at a conference in Guangzhou, China in May.

Laing says that most of her research has been conducted in Victoria. “My research on festivals and events has primarily examined their social benefits and meanings, such as their role in changing environmental behaviour,” she says. “I have also looked at practical problems such as governance issues affecting the viability of rural festivals, like succession planning and volunteer burnout.” Her  work has covered four main research areas: the social dimension of events, the role of tourism in rural and regional development, media and travel narratives, and health and wellness tourism.

The Academy (which is headquartered at the School of Hotel and Tourism Management, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University) was created to further scholarly research in tourism, and its Fellows are comprised of highly accomplished tourism researchers from around the world. Up to three scholars receive this award every two years and applicants must be within 10 years of having completed their PhD.

The award acknowledges Dr Laing’s contribution to tourism research and her substantial publication track record of innovative and ground-breaking research in top-tier journals and co-authorship of five research books. It is the first time a Victorian scholar has won this award.

LBS Associate Professor Elspeth Frew on Radio National’s Nightlife

LBS Associate Professor Elspeth Frew

Recently, LBS’s Associate Professor Elspeth Frew was interviewed on Radio National’s “Nightlife” for an hour discussing dark tourism, together with her research collaborator Dr Leanne White.

During the program there listeners across Australia called in to speak about their experiences at various dark tourism sites and how these visits had impacted them.

To listen to the full episode, click here.

La Trobe Business School partners for Sport Development and Peace

Dr Emma Sherry

LBS Associate Professor Emma Sherry recently participated in the inaugural symposium on Sport for Development and Peace, hosted by the University of Illinois as an invited speaker and Town Hall panelist. The symposium, titled Forming Partnerships and Linkages in Sport for Development and Peace: Considerations, Tensions, and Strategies, brought together international academics and sport for development experts and practitioners to discuss how sport, specifically through the creation and nurturing of key partnerships, can be used to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The purpose of the symposium was to bring together scholars, practitioners and students engaged in sport for development and peace (SDP) to create a dialogue about forming and sustaining partnerships and linkages between SDP initiatives and other sectors, the challenges facing partnership development, and strategies to overcome these challenges. The symposium was hosted by the Department of Recreation, Sport, and Tourism (RST) at the University of Illinois, the Sport+Development Lab (SDL), and Play for Change. The SDL is home to faculty and graduate students researching the intersection of sport and development. Play for Change is a registered student organization (RSO) focused on involving undergraduate and graduate students in actionable projects that use sport, recreation, and tourism for social change.

The sport for development and peace (SDP) field has grown exponentially in recent years, with more and more organizations, practitioners, and academics around the world embracing the possible contribution that sport can make to development agendas. SDP can occur at the individual, community, and societal levels. It can be defined as the use of sport as an engine for development through intercultural exchange, conflict resolution and peace building, community building, social inclusion, or programming for interpersonal development or health.

An emerging line of commentary in SDP concerns the nature of partnerships with various industry sectors. Without effective and sustainable partnerships, SDP organizations and scholars cannot viably engage in the field to effect social change; partnerships are the life blood of SDP organizations. However, many challenges and barriers exist that inhibit effective partnerships and linkages. From overcoming power dynamics, to misaligned goals and objectives, challenges can prevent organizations from establishing long-term partnerships and carrying out their missions. Given the international significance of partnerships and collaborations in SDP, much more conversation is needed about the nature of partnerships, their challenges, and effective strategies for forming and sustaining them.

The symposium brought together SDP experts, including Dr Sherry, to share presentations drawing on an original paper written for this symposium. Presenters provided a state of the field synopsis regarding partnerships with a specific sector (for example, health, community organisations, education or national and international bodies), outline challenges for developing and sustaining them, and then propose strategies for addressing these challenges.

In addition to the symposium, there were also two evening public events. On the first night, Dr. John Sugden, one of the world’s foremost experts in SDP and partnership development, provided a keynote address on the history and development of SDP, its current state of the field, and thoughts on developing and sustaining partnerships and linkages. The second night featured a town hall meeting with the symposium presenters focused on the power of sport to work for social good and change, and the challenges associated with doing so.

Dr Sherry noted that although the two-day symposium provided a full schedule for all attendees, the opportunity for international scholars in this field to spend time together to deeply discuss key research, theory-building and opportunities for research collaboration was invaluable. The opportunity for networking and discussion was extended through a very active use of Twitter by those organizing and attending (#sport4change2017) which extended the reach of the symposium to those unable to attend in person. Dr Sherry hopes that this is the first of many such events, and was delighted to be invited to present and share her research in the SDP field.

La Trobe subjects among global elite

La Trobe University has cemented its position amongst the world’s top institutions in the latest QS World University Rankings by Subject.

La Trobe now ranks alongside the world’s elite in almost half of the subjects assessed – an increase of 25 per cent from last year.

Published annually since 2011, the rankings are based on research impact, as well as academic and employer reputation.

La Trobe’s now ranks in the top 50 (50th) globally and sixth nationally in the new QS category of Hospitality and Leisure Management. This is due to the academics linked to the University’s Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality), which has established connections to major players in the tourism, hospitality and events industry, as well as  world-class research.

Another four subject areas ranked in the world top 100:

  • Archaeology (5th nationally)
  • Nursing (11th nationally)
  • Sociology (7th nationally) and
  • Sports-related subjects (7th nationally)

Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar welcomed the rankings, which were released the same day the University celebrated its 50th anniversary.

“This is more proof of La Trobe’s long-standing international reputation, the strength of our teaching and research, plus the recognised calibre and employability of our graduates,” Professor Dewar said.

“Overall our academic reputation has improved in about three-quarters of the ranked subjects – which is a clear reflection of the outstanding work, dedication and expertise of our staff,” Professor Dewar said.

Other subjects to feature in the top 400 include: History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Agriculture & Forestry, Psychology, Accounting & Finance, Communication & Media Studies, Education, Law, English Language & English Literature, Modern Languages, Biological Sciences, Business & Management Studies, Economics & Econometrics and Computer Science & Information Systems.

Emerging Scholar of Distinction – LBS Associate Professor Jennifer Laing

thumbnail_associate-professor-jennifer-laing

Associate Professor Jennifer Laing of the Department of Management and Marketing, La Trobe Business School, has been recognised as an Emerging Scholar of Distinction for 2017 by the International Academy for the Study of Tourism. The Academy was created to further the scholarly research and professional investigation of tourism and its membership of Fellows is comprised of highly accomplished tourism researchers from around the world. Up to three scholars receive this award every two years and applicants must be within 10 years of completing their PhD. It acknowledges Jennifer’s contribution to tourism research and her substantial publication track record of innovative, ground breaking research in top tier journals. This body of work includes 14 A* and 14 A ranked journal articles and theoretical contributions to knowledge in four main research areas – travel narratives, the social dimension of events, the role of tourism in rural and regional development and health and wellness tourism. As part of this award, Jennifer will attend the Academy Conference in Guangzhou, China in May 2017 and present on her work to the Fellows.

 

LBS student Achan Amol on her overseas internship: “It was an unforgettable experience”

On top of the Helipad Bar gazing at the Petronas Towers

On top of the Helipad Bar gazing at the Petronas Towers

By Achan Amol

Going into my second year of studies in a Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality) at LBS, I was eager to travel, as travel has been a massive passion of mine. In June/July 2016 I travelled to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with the help of the study abroad team who got in contact with an organisation called CISaustralia. The La Trobe Study Abroad team gave me a tremendous level of support in enhancing my trip, so that it became an unforgettable experience. I was advised of the opportunity to do an internship abroad. Then the rest of the work was completed by the awesome team at The Global Student who worked together with CISaustralia to find me a great position at a four star hotel called Crystal Crown Hotel, Petaling Jaya. I worked there at the front desk of the hotel as a receptionist.

During my six weeks at the Crystal Crown Hotel, I was able to put the theory that I had learnt in my first year of studies into action in a practical environment. I was greeting, checking guests in and out, making bookings, answering phone calls and undertaking all the other duties that came with the position I was working in. I also learnt a great deal about culture as a majority of the guests coming into the hotel were either locals or international visitors from all paths of life. The opportunity to work as an intern in Malaysia has broadened my perspective of the world around me and made me aware of the different cultures around the globe.

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With my final year just around the corner this internship gave me hands on experience in an ideal potential future job that I could undertake after completing my degree. Being able to work as a full time intern overseas opens a wide range of career opportunities and also provides opportunities such as networking, experiencing a new culture and meeting new people.  I highly recommend it.

Achan Amol is in her second year of studies in a Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality) at La Trobe Business School.

Department of Economics and Finance, LBS, Choice Modelling Workshop a major success

20160715_0951331-Tony McGrew

La Trobe Business School’s Department of Economics and Finance hosted a well-attended and highly successful Choice Modelling Workshop on 15 July 2016, at La Trobe’s City Campus. The workshop brought together international and Australian researchers on choice modelling and was organised by LBS academics A/Professor Buly Cardak and Dr Peter Sivey (RMIT). Presenters came from Monash University, University of Melbourne, UniSA, La Trobe University and the University of Kent, with most Melbourne and some interstate universities represented by academic staff and PhD candidates. It was pleasing and exciting to see both Marketing and Economics researchers presenting in and attending the same forum.

Choice modelling is a specialisation in empirical or applied research that sits between the use of survey data and the use of experiments. It involves researchers providing variation in hypothetical survey questions in order to elicit the preferences of survey respondents. There are many researchers in Australia using these methods in environmental, health and transport economics and in marketing.

Presenters and guests were welcomed by Head of La Trobe’s ASSC College, Professor Tony McGrew. The day involved a diverse range of research presentations, including a paper by Professor Tony Scott (University of Melbourne) that investigated how much time doctors and specialists want to spend working in public hospitals; a paper by Professor Harmen Oppewal (Monash University) that studied how the marketing of tourist destinations to time constrained tourists; a paper by Professor Iain Fraser (University of Kent at Canterbury and LBS) that used eye tracking to test what parts of packaging respondents were looking at when making food choices; and a paper by Professor John Rose (University of South Australia) that investigated people’s car purchasing choices under budget constraints, with interesting findings about choices after people are forced to make budgeting allowances when planning a car purchase.

These are details of only some of the presentations, information about all seven presentations and in some cases, slides and papers are available, here.

Guests and presenters left the workshop excited and inspired about the research presented and were hopeful that the Choice Modelling Workshop might become an annual event.

LBS Tourism and Hospitality International Study Program (THS3ISP) to Vietnam.

Imperial City
On 27th June 2016, LBS’s Paul Strickland and Tanya Thornton accompanied twenty one students studying either a Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality), Bachelor of Business (Event Management) or Bachelor of Business (Event Management/Marketing) from Bundoora and Bendigo campuses for a 14 days study program in Vietnam.

The Tourism and Hospitality International Study Program subject was designed to highlight tourism, hospitality and event related activities, including a range of different dining and gastronomic experiences, various levels of accommodation standards, tourism activities for westerners and the legacy of war. The entire program included breakfast, lunch and dinner daily in a variety of dining environments including set menu, buffet and cooking classes. Sampling all the delicious local cuisine was one of the highlights of the tour.

Commencing our program in Hanoi, lectures took place at Hanoi (Hanu) University where local students studying LTU programs joined in one-on-one discussions. After city tours, rickshaw rides and a water puppet show, we travelled by bus to the World Heritage listed Ha Long Bay for an unforgettable two day stay on a large 28 cabin boat which we had all to ourselves. Students were able to swim, play volleyball, explore limestone caves and kayak in amazing scenery. The itinerary took us to three other cities including Hue, Hoi-An and Hoi Chi Minh City where we soaked up the sunshine with glorious tours of temples, beautiful heritage architecture, solemn war museums and Australian battlefields.

There are simply too many student activities to list, but the program also encompassed many charity restaurants which aim to help street kids train in hospitality and better their lives. We celebrated two birthdays while we were away, singing Karaoke and dancing at a Sky bar, and we relaxed in a resort pool, but to know the rest you’d have to come along and experience it for yourself. Student feedback after the trip; ‘10/10’, ‘wouldn’t change a thing’ and ‘a much better way to learn’…. however, these comments were made before three more assessment tasks were due!

LBS academic Elspeth Frew featured on ABC Radio National’s Blueprint for Living

Elspeth Frew

Recently, La Trobe Business School Associate Professor Elspeth Frew, was featured on the ABC Radio National Show Blueprint for Living, where she spoke about the ethics of dark tourism and why people are attracted to sites like tourism sites of war, disaster, murder and unrest.

Listen to the full episode on the ABC website.

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