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Regional Vice Presidents

ITSA’s work around the world is led by a team of RVPs, who volunteer their time to support ITSA’s regional members, organise events and build networks for collaboration.

Indonesia – Prof. Devi Roza K. Kausar, Universitas Pancasila, Jakarta

Devi Roza K. Kausar, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Tourism, Universitas Pancasila, Jakarta. She was the Chair of the 8th ITSA Biennial Conference that was held hybrid on December 2022. She has a Ph.D. in International Development from Nagoya University – Japan, a Master’s Degree in Tourism Management from Curtin University – Australia, and a Bachelor of Economics from Padjadjaran University – Indonesia. She also holds a Certified Hospitality Education certification from the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI). Her research interests include cultural heritage tourism, sustainable tourism, rural development, and disaster risk reduction in tourism. In 2021, she was a Visiting Professor at Universitat de Girona, Spain, under the Erasmus+ Mobility Awards Scheme. She has been involved in various projects in the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy – the Republic of Indonesia, particularly in the field of rural tourism, tourism planning, and tourism education.

Email: [email protected] 

East Africa – Dr. Shem Wambugu Maingi, Kenyatta University, Kenya

Shem Wambugu Maingi, Ph.D. is a lecturer and researcher in Tourism Management at the Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Kenyatta University in Kenya. He has been a Tourism lecturer and researcher there for the last thirteen (13) years. He teaches various subjects in Tourism Management at both undergraduate and Postgraduate levels for the Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Kenyatta University. He completed his Ph.D. in Tourism Management at Kenyatta University, Kenya in 2014. His research interests include Cultural and Heritage Tourism, Tourism Sustainability and Resilience, Children’s Rights in Tourism, Polycentric Tourism Governance, Destination Management and Marketing, Responsible Management in Tourism, and Overtourism. Dr. Shem Maingi previously worked with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and was a board member of the Ecotourism Kenya Eco-rating Standards Committee. He has also been a member of the editorial board and referee for professional periodicals on sustainable tourism such as the Green Destination Guidelines and Certification. Dr. Shem Maingi has served as a Pre-Qualified Curriculum Reviewer and Resource Person with the Commission for University Education in Kenya for the last 6 years. He has international networking experience working with the International Scientific Committee on Cultural Tourism of ICOMOS (ICTC), African Union Economic, Social, Cultural Council (AU- ECOSOCC), the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) as well as the IUCN WCPA Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group TAPAS. He has co-edited books and authored journal articles and book chapters on the future and resilience of tourism in the Kenyan context. In terms of research experience, he has widely published in Scopus-indexed journals and books internationally, one of which received a joint award as Article of the Year 2011.

United States of America (USA) – Prof. Jonathon Day, Purdue University, USA

Dr. Jonathon Day, PhD. an Associate Professor in Purdue’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, has over 25 years of experience in tourism management. Jonathon is the coauthor of The Tourism System 8th edition, author of “Introduction to Sustainable Tourism and Responsible Travel”, as well as over 45 peer-reviewed articles in journals including Tourism Analysis, Journal of Travel and Tourism Marketing, Annals of Tourism Research, International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management. Dr. Day is the lead investigator for the Sustainable Tourism and Responsible Travel lab (STARTlab) at Purdue University. He currently chairs the Travel Care Code Initiative (, a network of academic and marketing organizations promoting responsible travel. Dr. Days’ research and engagement activities include projects in Nepal, Colombia, and Uzbekistan, as well as the United States and Australia. Jonathon’s work is focused on sustainable tourism and responsible travel. His work focuses on how tourism can be used to not only enrich travelers but support destination communities.

Central and Eastern Europe – Dr. Miroslav D. Vujičić, University of Novi Sad, Serbia

Prof. dr Miroslav Vujičić is associate professor and Departmental Vice-Head for international projects and mobility at the University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Sciences. He is main evaluator for impact assessment of European Capital of Culture Novi Sad 2022 and worked as chief researcher for sustainability practices and destination perception of Dubai EXPO 2020. Main field of interest is decision making processes, project management, product development, cultural tourism, impact assessment, accessible tourism and has proficiency skills in data gathering, analysis and interpretation of mathematical and statistical methods. Programme Leader, PhD in management and business (tourism). He is experienced project manager as he participated on more than 30 international projects (H2020/Horizon Europe, Erasmus+, COSME, IPA INTERREG, COST, RCC and other).

China – Dr. Shihan (David) Ma, Zheijiang University, China

Dr David Ma, P.hD. is an Assistant Professor at the School of Management, Zhejiang University. His main research interests include social media and digital marketing, big data analytics in tourism, technology innovation, and application for travel. His work has been published in top-tier journals such as @Tourism Management, @Journal of Travel Research, Annals of Tourism Research, and International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management among others.

To date, Dr. Ma’s research has been funded by organizations such as the @National Natural Science Foundation of China, the National Science Foundation (NSF) of the United States, the US Army Corps of Engineers, and the Florida Department of Transportation. His work has also been recognized with awards such as the first prize in 2022 Outstanding Research Results in Culture and Tourism in China, the Best Short Paper Award at @ENTER2021, and the first prize in the ENTER2020 Data Science Competition.

Dr. Ma also has expertise in tourism planning and development. Prior to joining Zhejiang University, he has been working as a tourism consultant and planner at Atkins. He has provided planning and consulting services to DMOs both domestically and abroad, including the @Department of Culture and Tourism, Zhejiang Province, Altai City, Dongying City, Luoyang City, and the @Florida Department of Tourism. Dr Ma attained his PhD degree in Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management from the University of Florida. He earned his Master’s and Bachelor’s degree in Tourism Planning and Tourism Management from Peking University and Fudan University, China respectively, which both recognized him as its Outstanding Graduate of the Year.

Caribbean – Tenisha Brown-Williams, The University of West Indies, Trinidad & Tobago

Tenisha Brown-Williams currently serves as an adjunct lecturer and researcher at The University of the West Indies, St Augustine campus in Trinidad and Tobago, where she is pursuing her PhD in Governance with a focus on tourism governance in Small Multi-island Destinations (SMIDs) in the Caribbean. In addition to her academic pursuits, Tenisha is also actively involved in the tourism industry, spearheading eco-certification for the accommodation, restaurants and attractions sector in Trinidad and Tobago and the wider English-speaking Caribbean through the international Green Key programme. She is also the Airbnb Host Community Leader Volunteer for Trinidad and Tobago, having been an active host for eight (8) years. Her research experience includes tourism education, the tourism sharing economy, sustainable tourism, and resilience. Tenisha is a native of Trinidad and Tobago and is the International Tourism Studies Association’s Regional Vice-President for the Caribbean Region.

UK and Ireland – Dr. Hugues Seraphin, Oxford Brookes University, UK

Dr Hugues SERAPHIN, PhD is a Senior Lecturer in Tourism, Hospitality, and Events Management at the Oxford Brookes Business School, Oxford Brookes University in the UK. Hugues holds a PhD from the University of Perpignan, France (Université de Perpignan Via Domitia, France). Hugues regularly publishes articles in peer-reviewed academic journals. He is currently working on research projects that look at the role that children can play in the long-term sustainability of destinations. His research areas include sustainable Tourism/Events, tourism (and Events) in Post-Colonial and Post-Conflict Destinations, Children in Tourism, Hospitality and Events tourism Education.

Western Europe – Dr. Claudia Seabra, University of Coimbra, Portugal

Cláudia Seabra, PhD is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Arts & Humanities at the Universidade de Coimbra. She has a Post-PhD in Economic and Social Geography from the Nova School of Business and Economics. She holds a PhD in Tourism from the Universidade de Aveiro and a Master in Social Sciences from ISCTE. Her research essentially focuses on the areas of Consumer Behavior, Safety in Tourism, and Terrorism and Tourism.  She published several papers in international scientific journals such as Annals of Tourism Research, Journal of Business Research, Tourism Management, International Journal of Tourism Cities, Tourism Management Perspectives, Journal of Heritage Tourism, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Management, European Journal of Tourism Research, ANATOLIA, Journal of Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage, Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology, Sustainability among others. She edited two scientific books for Emerald Group Publishing in the series “Tourism Security Safety and Post Conflict Destinations”, Pandemics and Travel: COVID-19 Impacts in the Tourism Industry (2021) and Safety and Tourism – A Global Industry with Global Risks (2023). She is editing A Research Agenda for Tourism and Risk for Edward Elgar Publishing. She is the Theme Editor on Terrorism at the International Journal of Tourism Cities and Review Editor of the Frontiers in Sustainable Tourism.. She is the Theme Editor on #Terrorism at the International Journal of Tourism Cities and. She was invited to deliver several seminars within the scope of several scientific conferences and meetings in the areas of Communication and Marketing, Tourism and Safety. She is also a member of several scientific committees and the organization boards of international scientific conferences. Claudia Seabra is member of the CEGOT – Centre of Studies in Geography and Spatial Planning.

South Asia – Prof. Nimit Chowhandry, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi

Prof Nimit Chowdhary is associated with the Department of Tourism and Hospitality Management, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. He holds BE (Mech Engg), MBA and PhD (Management) and has more than 29 years of postgraduate teaching and research experience. He has been a full professor for more than 15 years at Mizoram University, Indian Institute Of Tourism And Travel Management (Gwalior, Noida and Nellore) and now Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. He has also been a professor at @ITESM- MEXICO, and Shaoxing University, CHINA. He has also taught at the @University of Girona, SPAIN, the @University of Gotland, Sweden, and GEA Academy SLOVENIA. Recently, Arizona State University accorded him the honour of Adjunct Professorship. He has received awards and accolades in and outside of India in recognition of his academic contributions. He is a recipient of the AICTE Career Award for Young Teachers; @SIDA Fellowship, Sweden; Guest Scholarship, Sweden; @Linnaeus Palme Exchange Programme Grants, Sweden; PIMG Research Excellence Award, Gwalior; Scholars’ Grant (EMTM), Erasmus Mundus Association, Europe among others. He was also chosen for the prestigious Leap programme at the University of Oxford. His research has focused on destination marketing, tourism entrepreneurship and guiding and interpretation and has supervised 15 PhDs, authored eight books, edited four books and contributed more than 125 papers. He has had funded research support from the University Grants Commission (UGC), Indian Council of Social Sciences Research (ICSSR), AICTE and Incredible India, Ministry of Tourism, India.

North-East Asia – Prof. Chulmo Koo, Kyung Hee University, South Korea

Prof. Chulmo Koo is a Professor of Smart Tourism Education Platform at Kyung Hee University, South Korea. Dr. Koo has a strong record of research and scholarship in smart tourism with significant contributions to both education and service. Dr. Koo received prestigious research awards such as the Kyung Hee Research Fellowship (2018-2020) and Excellent Professor of Kyung Hee (2019) at the university level and the Best Research Paper Award in the ENTER (2015) conference at the IFITT (International Federation of IT and Travel & Tourism). Prior to joining Kyung Hee University, Dr. Koo was an Assistant Professor at Chosun University, South Korea, a full-time instructor at Marshall University, USA, Research Fellow at Inha University and Yonsei University, and Post-Doctorate in the MISRC at Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, Minnesota, USA.

Canada – Dr. Jesse Gao, University of Waterloo, Canada

Dr. Minjie Jessie Gao is a data analyst and research scientist at the Canadian Index of Wellbeing (CIW). She completed her MS in Tourism Planning at Peking University in China, and her PhD studies in Recreation and Leisure Studies at the University of Waterloo. Jessie spent several school terms with the CIW as a graduate RA. In January 2018 she joined us full-time and is in charge of updating and maintaining the CIW’s data repository, working with national, provincial, and regional data as well as CIW data from our Community Wellbeing Surveys. Her current research interests include focusing on adolescents’ family vacations and quality of life.

Australasia and Oceania – Dr. Jun Wen, Edith Cowan University, Australia

Dr Jun Wen is a lecturer in Tourism and Service Marketing at the School of Business and Law, Edith Cowan University (ECU). He was born in China and studied abroad in New Zealand until earning his Ph.D. from the University of Waikato in August 2018. He joined ECU in early 2019 and is now the Stream Leader for Chinese Tourism Markets in ECU’s School of Business and Law Centre for Tourism Research (SBLCTR). Dr Wen has published research articles in top-tier international journals in marketing, tourism and hospitality, and public health. He believes the core value of academic research is to contribute to theory and practice. Dr Wen is an award-winning early career researcher. He was named among the Top 40 of Australia’s early achievers (Rising Stars) in 2020 and 2021. In 2021, he was awarded the “2020 CAUTHE Fellows Commendation for Hospitality, Tourism and/or Events Research” by the Council for Australasian Tourism and Hospitality Education for his exemplary research performance in Australia and New Zealand. In 2021, he was also identified as a High Achieving Researcher under the research theme “Society & Culture” at ECU. Dr Wen received the Excellence in Research by an Emerging Scholar Award from ECU’s School of Business and Law in 2020 and the Highest Impact Publication Award from ECU’s School of Business and Law in 2021. In 2022, he received the Best Reviewer Award from Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management (ABDC-A; Q1; SSCI) based on his service in 2021. Dr Wen’s research has also brought social and economic issues to the mainstream media, such as via The West Australian (Perth, Australia), Campus Review (Australia), The Australian – Higher Education (Australia), Research Australia – Inspire (medical magazine, Australia), Times Higher Education (international), China Global Television Network (CGTN, China), and SBS Mandarin (Australia).

India – Dr. Niraalee Shah, Image building and Etiquette Mapping consultant, India

Dr. Niraalee Shah founded Image Building and Etiquette Mapping to help entrepreneurs create profitable businesses and brands that attract their ideal clients. A Corporate Trainer, Author, Tourism Trainer, Sustainability Trainer, Hospitality Trainer, Digital Marketing Consultant and Branding Consultant. Niraalee Shah helps corporates, organizations, travel agencies, the tourism industry and hospitality industry, and individual professionals to help embrace change and achieve breakthrough performance. Niraalee has a burning desire to share the Magic of India – Celebrating Cultural Diversity through her book INDIAN ETIQUETTE A Glimpse Into India’s Culture []. A staggering diversity where ethnicity, culture, religion, and language come together in a dazzling kaleidoscope of humanity. In India, there is an amazing cultural diversity throughout the country. Welcome to our helpful guide for India! If you are looking to travel, live, relocate, or do business in the sovereign state, this book shall give you a complete guide to understanding the country and its culture, practices, and etiquette in India. Dr. Niraalee Shah’s work is focused on the wide spectrum of training requirements. Dr. Niraalee Shah empowers me to lead the way towards a more sustainable future. Through her training, corporate houses, the tourism industry, and the hospitality industry not only gain a competitive edge but also contribute towards creating a better world and more responsible individuals. She is truly a trailblazer in the field of tourism sustainable training, and her dedication to promoting Sustainable Tourism in India sets her apart as a visionary and a catalyst for positive change.

Southern Africa – Dr. Kevin Mearns, University of South Africa, South Africa

Professor Kevin Mearns, PhD is a Full Professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at the University of South Africa (UNISA). Mearns hold a PhD from the University of Portsmouth in the United Kingdom. Mearns specialises in the research areas of sustainability, sustainable tourism, community-based tourism and ecotourism particularly in a close proximity to natural and protected areas. Mearns has supervised more than 45 postgraduate Masters and Doctoral candidates to completion and published more than 120 peer-reviewed scholarly journal publications, book chapters and conference proceedings. http://

Central Asia – Dr. Gulbaram Kulakhmetova, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University

Kulakhmetova Gulbaram Amantaevna works as an associate professor at the Al Farabi Kazakh National University. Takes an active part in creating, updating educational and working programs, member of the Republican educational and methodological council in the specialty “Tourism”, an active member of UNESCO (member card No. 014925), member of the editorial board of the journal “Theory and practice of physical culture, sport and tourism”, member of the expert group in the International University Sports Federation (FISU) Department of Education. Has huge experiences of participation in seven scientific projects/programs in various priority areas of science.

South America – Dr. Sara Joana Gadotti dos Anjos, UNIVAL, Brazil

Sara Joana Gadotti dos Anjos, Manager. Master and PhD in Production Engineering/Business Management. Professor and researcher at the University of Vale do Itajaí / Univali,/Brazil,  for 28 years, working in the graduation and in the Master’s and Doctorate Program in Tourism and Hospitality. Productivity Researcher at the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development – CNPq. International experience with postdoctoral studies in Spain and Portugal. Supervised more than 100 undergraduate, Master’s and Doctoral students. More than 80 articles and book chapters have been published in national and international journals by renowned publishers. Government support in research projects. Experience in national and international editorial management in journals of excellence. Conducts research in the area of Tourism in: Innovation, Behavior, Models of Excellence, Hospitality, Human Resources, Restaurants.

South East Asia – Prof. Abhishek Bhati, James Cook University, Singapore

Professor Abhishek Singh Bhati is the Campus Dean of James Cook University Singapore. Abhishek’s research investigates responsible tourism, resilience planning in tourism, sustainable development of cities, and scholarship of learning and teaching. In particular, he is interested in technology and the role it has as a catalyst for tourism industry changes, “Smart City” as a mechanism for future sustainable development, and the need for tourism to deliver United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). His recent projects have explored visitor intention to travel, sideline tourism and tourism value-add and tourist vandalism.

Impact: He contributed to the development of a set of intervention strategies to address vandalism at visitor attractions in Singapore & Thailand, informed National Research Council Thailand’s position paper on the review of tourism police in Bangkok and to the increased understanding of new genres in tourism such as industrial heritage railways tourism and dark tourism in Asia.

Baltic states – Dr. Agita Livina, Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences

Bio coming soon….

Mexico and Central America – Dr. Pablo Monzano, El Condor University Institute, Mexico

Bio coming soon….