Journal of Teaching in Travel and Tourism: Re-purposing tourism: Engaging our radical in tourism education – forthcoming

Guest Editors:

Karla Boluk, University of Waterloo, Canada

Carrie Herzog, Conestoga College, Canada

Daniela Freund, School of Tourism and Hospitality Management Sant Ignasi (Universitat Ramon Llull), Spain

Kajsa G. Åberg, Region Västerbotten, Sweden

With seven decades of growth in international tourist arrivals leading up to COVID-19, scholars and practitioners have been tasked with confronting the inimical and urgent concerns regarding the economic, social, cultural, and environmental impacts generated by the industry. Specifically, the issues of overtourism, the climate crisis, the availability and quality of tourism work, the capacity of communities to accommodate tourism and the ability of the natural environment to regenerate, attract both media and public attention. The conversations around these issues highlight the unsustainable nature of the current industrial models of tourism. At the same time, mobile workers, migrants, tourists, day-trippers, lifestyle nomads, and travellers are challenging traditional notions of tourism, as well as generating new kinds of values and new models of exchange in tourism. In addition to sustainability concerns, political activism in support of black lives matter and the wider racialized voices matter movements, precipitating the death of George Floyd, necessitates we urgently challenge the operation of tourism which has been a vehicle for oppression towards minority and marginalized groups, supporting systemic racism. We must determine how we can change this. The events of COVID-19 and the general pause of tourism presents us with the opportunity to restart, revision, and repurpose tourism and challenge the operation of tourism and how we teach tourism.

With this in mind, and in support of the Tourism Education Futures Initiative’s (TEFI) ambition to move beyond business as usual, our call for papers seeks to radically challenge and debate the purpose of tourism and tourism education. This special issue is inspired by the TEFI 11 virtual conference on the same theme, hosted by York St John University in June 2020. We are delighted to open this call for manuscripts from authors who did not virtually attend the conference, but who seek to explore purposeful tourism in tourism education. Given the isolation COVID-19 has prompted globally, and in consideration of the sustainability crisis, there is no better time to reflect on our purpose. Purpose is what motivates us. It is the reason why we do things, why tourism operators continue to open their doors, why workers turn up for their shifts, and why tourism organisations, and governments make decisions to “do what they do.” Excavating our purpose and those of others provides an opportunity to find common ground. Purposeful tourism is about creating sustainable places to live, work and visit, based on co-creating value that is more than the pursuit of profit. Purposeful tourism education is about creating values-based teaching to set the scene for future world makers. Purpose is intentional and requires a commitment to iterative learning and reflexivity about one’s decisions, behaviours, and choices. A purposeful tourist must be honest and demonstrate restraint regarding the amount and types of travel one chooses to embark on. A for-purpose business strives to deliver more than just profit, often delivering social, cultural, economic, and environmental benefits to other stakeholders or communities because it is “the right thing to do.” The goal of our call for papers is to reflect on the transformative role of tourism to peoples, places, and the planet.

The peripatetic lifestyle of academicians is troublesome and comes at a cost; if our work is to have posterity, we must honestly and critically reflect on the values informing our practices and respond radically. As such, we challenge the academic community to consider ways to promote purposeful travel and purposeful work. Tourism education is at the forefront of this challenge as we, educators and practitioners, critically seek ways to enhance tourism practices and, through our radical actions, challenge the collapse of biodiversity and the silencing of host communities affected by the various impacts of tourism. It is within this context we invite contributors to examine “purpose” and the potential criticality and radicality “purpose” has to facilitate transformation to a less harmful kind of tourism. Contributions are invited that embody the reflection on “purpose” within a wide range of thematic areas.

  • ACTIVATING purpose in teaching and research
  • ENGAGING tourism education in the next economy and tourism
  • NARRATING the future through purpose
  • RADICAL generosity – in teaching, developing community partnerships, and providing world making opportunities for students
  • PURPOSEFUL tourism - intentional and value-driven business models
  • INSPIRING intentional community development for social change
  • EDUCATING for purpose - Moral dimensions of teaching, learning, and sharing knowledge
  • CHALLENGING our purpose - Honesty and integrity in our teaching practices
  • REVEALING systemic racism in tourism – using our courses to co-learn and combat racism
  • DELIVERING purpose - Social entrepreneurship in tourism and tourism education
  • REFLECTING on how tourism may contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) specifically, SDG 4 Quality Education
  • EMPOWERING change-making– Resistance, survival, and purpose in higher education
  • CO-CREATING value with colleagues and community partners
  • ACKNOWLEDGING the differences in incentives for tourism engagement among stakeholders and the potential for synergies between them
  • PROACTIVE PLANNING of the ephemeral academic involvement in long term community development

The call is now closed, but if you want more information about this forthcoming issue please contact: or Author guidelines for the Journal of Teaching in Travel and Tourism can be found here:

Full papers will be invited following abstract reviews. The deadline for full draft submissions is 1 March 2021. All submissions will be subject to the journal’s normal high standards of peer review. The deadline for final version of papers is 1 June 2021. All accepted papers will be published online without delay, with print publication of the special issue to follow. The Special Issue will be published in the fall of 2021.


Best wishes,

Karla Boluk, University of Waterloo, Canada

Carrie Herzog, Conestoga College, Canada

Daniela Freund, Universitat Ramon Llull, Spain

Kajsa G. Åberg, Region Västerbotten, Sweden

See more information HERE

Forthcoming book

Teaching Tourism: Innovative, values-based learning experiences for transformative practices

Book Series: Elgar Guides to Teaching

Tourism as an activity is increasingly being criticized for its exploitative and extractive industrial approaches to business. Yet, it has the power to transform and to regenerate societies, cultures and the environment. The desire to explore the world around us is deeply embedded in many people’s psyche, but it comes at a cost to the environment and often to the residents of the visited communities. Much of tourism education has been closely linked to preparing students for future professional practice, but the challenges and opportunities linked to its consumption require that its future leaders must exhibit very different values and understandings to tackle ever more complex and wicked problems from which tourism cannot dissociate itself. This volume brings together a compilation of values-based learning experiences that can be adapted to suit the needs and disposition of individual instructors. Their aim is not only to engage students in the subject matter but also deepen their understanding of its complexity and interconnectivity and help them become global citizens that lead lives of consequence.

This edited book, published by Edward Elgar Publishing, sets out to provide a series of tools for instructors; from short exercises that open up conversations, to complex assignments that will help students think deeply about the consequences of actions to be taken while remaining hopeful that they can effect real change. All of these means of student engagement must be able to be adapted to fit the needs of individual instructors in many different disciplines, and to align with desired learning outcomes of particular courses. Specifically, contributions are sought that will address:

  1. Lived values: the social, cultural, political, economic, ecological and technological values that create forces of change, and illustrate how travel and tourism are examples of human rights, drivers of cultural, social and environmental change, and as industries that often create important sources of income for local populations.
  2. Aspirational or universal values – ethics, mutuality, stewardship, knowledge and professionalism – that were identified as part of the framework developed by the Tourism Education Futures Initiative (TEFI) and should be incorporated into all aspects of curriculum.

 Chapters are co-authored by the book’s editors and contributing colleagues, with the colleagues’ engagement examples illustrating the running narrative created by the editors. Colleagues’ contributions would range between 1-3 pages long, depending on type of engagement, and take different forms, such as:

  • Conversation starters / thought bubbles
  • Individual activities / Group activities
  • Tutorial activities / small class / large class
  • Multilevel assignments

Marion Joppe, PhD

School of Hospitality, Food and Tourism Management
University of Guelph, Canada

Johan R. Edelheim (PhD Cultural Studies, MQU)
Professor of Tourism and Media

Research Faculty of Media and Communication
Graduate School of International Media, Communication, and Tourism Studies

Hokkaido University, Japan


TEFI 10 - Anthropocene