Developing the tourism industry

Three JIBS researchers have received a little over 150,000 Euro for a project where they will compare innovation in tourism and hospitality with innovation in other sectors.

The project leader is Mikaela Backman, PhD of Economics. The two other researchers involved in the application are Professor of Economics Johan Klaesson, and PhD of Economics Özge Öner who is also a research fellow at the Research Institute of Industrial Economics in Stockholm.

“Within the ever growing tourism industry, which now forms the basis of the service sector, there is still a considerable lack of agreement on what innovation actually is, how it happens, but mainly how it should be measured”, says Özge Öner.

That is why the researchers now want to identify, collect data on, and analyse the innovation activities in the Swedish tourism industry.

The grant comes from BFUF (the R&D Fund of the Swedish Tourism & Hospitality Industry), a fund aiming to promote scientific research and innovation within the hospitality sector (such as hotels, restaurants, transport and retail).

“Innovation research usually focuses on technology and IT. It is important to strengthen the capacity for innovation in the hospitality sector”, says Stina Algotson, managing director of BFUF.

Researchers from Luleå University of Technology and Umeå University received the same amount for projects, also concerning innovation in the hospitality sector.