To celebrate World Tourism Day on 27 September, Griffith University showcased some of the innovative work students and staff were doing at GIFT. This year’s theme was, ‘Tourism and the Digital Transformation’.
“Technology is increasingly important to tourism, making the guest experience more personalised and relevant, easier to purchase and more enjoyable and fun,” senior lecturer Dr Sarah Gardiner said. “I’m particularly impressed by some of the young Queensland innovators that are leading the way in tourism’s digital transformation globally.”
Griffith graduate and NoExpiry founder Jackie Babbage, launched a new innovative online global gifting platform early this year, and current PhD candidate Ryan Yung, is investigating the role virtual reality will play in future tourism experiences.
Griffith researchers are also at the forefront of using new technologies in research. One project that highlights GIFT’s dedication to integrating technology in its research is ‘Monitoring the Great Barrier Reef’. Led by GIFT director Professor Susanne Becken, the project investigates the urgent need to better understand and monitor the aesthetic value of the Great Barrier, using technology such as eye tracking, heart rate measurement, big data and artificial intelligence to obtain its results.
Smart service ‘My Green Butler’, developed by PhD candidate Christopher Warren, is another example of Griffith’s digital tourism nous, using smart metering and big data in order to help businesses change their customers’ consumption behaviours for the betterment of the environment.
In the realm of Hospitality and Events Management, GIFT researchers Associate Professor Anoop Patiar and Ms Kayleen Wood are investigating virtual field trips in the hospitality industry.
Meanwhile, technology and digital innovation also play a crucial role for researchers in the field of Tourism Modelling & Trends, exemplified by the Global Sustainable Tourism Dashboard initiative.