Griffith University: Griffith recognised as destination for tourism policy innovation

The Griffith Institute for Tourism (GIFT) has landed on a global list of industry leaders working to build a more sustainable and equitable tourism industry reshaped by COVID-19.

It is the only university-led organisation to be recognised on the Apolitical 75 Most Innovative Organisations in Tourism for 2021 list released in partnership with Mastercard and the United Nations World Tourism Organisation.

Director Professor Chris Fleming says the ranking reflects the industry partnerships and calibre of joint research projects undertaken by GIFT.

“Disrupting industries by re-thinking how and why things are done is reserved for those with the courage to endure the difficult path it demands.

“Great researchers need to ask great questions and ours have been brave enough to ask challenging and at times often uncomfortable questions of industry stakeholders in the aviation and tourism sector.”


GIFT Deputy Director Dr Sarah Gardiner
Deputy Director Associate Professor Sarah Gardiner says as Australia’s largest tourism research institute GIFT is best positioned for solving the coming challenges.

“Tourism is facing unprecedented challenges and finding innovative solutions is essential to the recovery of the sector.

Our institute is committed to providing evidence-based strategic advice and cutting-edge thinking to guide the industry’s transition to this new era of tourism.”

Current research projects include:
A Sustainable Tourism Future for the Pacific – exploring sustainable and conscious tourism balancing economic, social and environmental needs in the Pacific.
Rethinking Aviation – helping the aviation sector lower their carbon impact to future proof the sector.
Regional Tourism Research – mobilising local communities to showcase unique tourism experience like Charleville’s Secret WWII base centre.
Bushfire stories – building community resilience following disasters by sharing first-hand experiences of community responders in the newly built Binna Burra Lodge Phoenix Pavilion.
Tourism – Road for Recovery – this free micro-credential short course is taught by Deputy Director Associate Professor Sarah Gardiner and offers tourism stakeholders the latest knowledge and skills to build a recovery plan out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Australian Research Council Linkage Project: Developing a national rural volunteering roadmap awarded this year and led by member Associate Professor Leonie Lockstone-Binney.
Griffith University is also Australia’s leading tourism university and is ranked No. 1 in Australia and No. 5 in the world for Hospitality and Tourism in the 2021 Shanghai Ranking’s Global Ranking of Academic Subjects.

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