The International Institute of Hotel Management (IIHM) has launched the IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research. The Centre was officially inaugurated by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Secretary-General Mr Zurab Pololikashvili on the occasion of the World Tourism Day 2021.
In his address to IIHM, Mr Zurab Pololikashvili said, “On World Tourism Day, UNWTO is proud to stand with IIHM and I am honoured to officially inaugurate the IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research on this historic occasion.” He further added, “International Institute of Hotel Management has emerged as a true leader in the Tourism sector. IIHM connects India’s talented youth to the wider sector and the world. Furthermore, the IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research is a forum that will enhance this unique relationship between Hospitality education and employers.”
In response to the Secretary-General’s address, Dr Suborno Bose (CEO and Chairman, IIHM Hotel School) said, “IIHM is deeply honoured and humbled by the recognition and affirmation of our role by the UNWTO. This will only strengthen our resolve and that of our partners to champion the cause of Hospitality and Tourism across the world.”
He added, “As a responsible and leading educational institution in the field of tourism and hospitality, it is our responsibility to conduct research in areas that matter to the industry. Through our Research Centre, we will be looking at cross-sharing of ideas as well as sharing best practices with other research organizations globally. We work closely with the European Union’s ERASMUS project and conduct research on subjects such as reducing waste, farm to plate, organic farming, etc. Going forward, we will be happy to extend our research findings to European Union through the ERASMUS project.”
The IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research, which will be affiliated to the International Hospitality Council (IHC) London, will be located in three cities – Kolkata, Delhi and Goa. Students from IIHM as well as from other institutions across the world will be welcome to join the research groups at the Centre. The research centre in Goa will be a residential facility where researchers from all over the world can conduct research on a long-term basis.
Research at the Centre will be conducted in various focus areas of the industry such as how the industry will move on after the pandemic in terms of business, new ideas, strategies, the food cycle, extensive use of plastic, etc. Prof David Foskett (MBE), who is the Chairman of IHC London and was previously the Dean and Head of the London School of Hospitality and Tourism at the University of West London, will be heading the IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research.
Regarding the newly launched research centre, Prof Foskett said, “We need research because post pandemic, the world will not be the same. We have to understand the new technologies, customer service, employment patterns and the new expectations of the customers post pandemic. These are some of the issues that we need to research because tourism is here to stay, although in a very different form and tourism has so much to offer to us as humanity. The research conducted at the IIHM Global Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research is going to help us understand how to improve hygiene and processes in the tourism and hospitality industry in the post-pandemic world.”