Research at the service of institutions and destinations
These research themes consider the role of tourism in economic development, the evolution of the tourism sector and of consumer behaviour, the impact of technologies, as well as the management and marketing of destinations, tourism companies and events.
Enhancing the value and impact of Excelia’s contributions within its local regions, Charente-Maritime and Centre-Val de Loire in particular, the TMI aims to build partnerships with key players in the local tourism sector, which is in a period of transformation, by focussing on specific, topical research areas to address the challenges facing the events sector, the traditional hotel industry, and the open-air sector.
These partnerships facilitate access to the industry sector (data collection and interviews) and provide funding for the research. They are established through two different types of agreement: research sponsorship or partnership agreement.
When an agreement is signed, i.e. when a company or an institution has expressed interest in a research topic, the TMI assigns researchers to it, with the aim of “building a strong foundation in all dimensions of tourism, whether sociological, geographical, marketing, financial, etc., in order to interest fellow researchers”, explains Luc Béal.
Two exciting examples of the many themes explored:
- In partnership with RMD Technologies, a La Rochelle-based company
As its name suggests, the purpose of RMD Technologies is to exploit revenue management for destinations, which consists of using accommodation reservation data to study the behaviour of demand for accommodation and camping, and to help accommodation providers and destinations to better manage their offer.
- The holiday park and camping industry is changing!
Like for the hotel sector, the same is true for industry professionals in the ‘open-air hotel industry’, known in French as HPA - Hôtel Plein Air… referring to campgrounds and holiday parks. With more than 7,000 campgrounds in France, this is a tourism sector ‘still in its infancy’ according to Luc Béal, because existing operational management tools, the monitoring of demand, and innovation are still very much the prerogative of the major groups. Here again, TMI and Excelia, which has just recruited a young research-active faculty member specialising in this sector of activity, will support this sector in studying the challenges it faces, and will participate in defining solutions.