Expanding research for the research group on sustainability in tourism and hospitality
  • publication: 8 November 2018

Expanding research

For a research group on sustainability in tourism and hospitality it is important to look over the borders of the 1st world and expand research in developing touristic areas. 

Bali is such a place. Bali is heavily relying on tourism. The tourism and hospitality industry is the largest employer on the island, which makes the indigenous people on the island at risk. 

After the Bali bombings in 2002 and 2005 tourism dropped completely, leaving many employees in this sector at financial risk for many years. Current events as the eruption of Mount Agung, earthquakes in Lombok and a tsunami in Sulawesi are responsible for dents in the number of arriving tourists, so a dent in earnings of indigenous people. 

Natural disasters and terrorism are not the only factors threatening the development of Bali. The state of sustainability on the island is on code red. Water shortage, air pollution, single use plastic, illegal dumping of waste water and waste and the yearly 5 months long wave of trash ending up on the touristic beaches are a large threat to the environment. 

More and more articles and reviews are written about the current state of Bali’s waste problem, videos go viral, blogs expose the issue. This has huge impact on tourism. See for example: https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2018/mar/06/so-much-plastic-british-diver-films-deluge-of-waste-off-bali-video

The research group on sustainability within tourism and hospitality recognises the importance of expanding her research and have a more global focus. A cooperation with campus sites is an option. 

NHL / Stenden’s Leeuwarden campus employs staff on Bali. The research group looks into possibilities to employ research members living abroad to broaden its research. The setup of research in possible cooperation with campus sites is a possibility. 

Rodney Westerlaken Putra Nugraha lives for 12 years on Bali and is a recognised environmentalist, change maker and researcher. Currently he is finishing his PhD in cultural studies and runs the Westerlaken Foundation, among others focusing on impact research towards the marine environment. Rodney has lectured Sustainability at the Bali campus, guest lectures at the world famous Green School, does public speeches on sustainability and works as General Manager in the hospitality industry. The research group is looking at possibilities to let Rodney join the research group from Bali.