Dr Joanne Connell
Senior Lecturer in Tourism Management
+44 (0) 1392 722657
Streatham Court, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4PU, UK
Dr Joanne Connell joined the University of Exeter Business School in 2011. Her previous posts include Senior Lecturer in Tourism in the Department of Marketing at the University of Stirling, and Lecturer in Tourism at the University of Plymouth.
Her qualifications include a BSc (Hons) in Rural Resource Management and an MA in Tourism and Social Responsibility (Exeter). She was awarded a PhD in 2002 by the Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Plymouth for her research on gardens as a tourism and recreational resource, and in particular the implications for managing gardens as visitor attractions.
Dr Connell has extensive experience in tourism research, education, publishing and knowledge transfer. Notably, Dr Connell is the author of a range of acclaimed books and edited collections, notably the major international text book Tourism: A Modern Synthesis of which she is currently working on a 4th edition, and most recently, The Handbook of Events (both with Stephen Page). She has co-edited a series of high level research works for both Routledge and Sage that provide a valuable synthesis and roadmap for how sub-disciplines in Tourism (Event Tourism, Sustainable Tourism and the wider generic area of Leisure) have evolved.
Many of the research and consultancy projects in which Dr Connell has been involved demonstrate both social and economic impact through the leveraging of policy advice to organisations seeking to address strategic issues. She has led and worked as part of small project teams with a number of external bodies in a knowledge transfer capacity: recent examples include VisitScotland, New Zealand Ministry of Economic Development and Stirling Council. Having advised and worked extensively with Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority (Scotland’s first National Park Authority) during a secondment, she experienced first-hand how academic approaches contribute to the development of methodologies to solve complex research problems in innovative and robust ways, in addition to contributing to National Park sustainable planning processes. Other projects she has worked on include event impact evaluations, tourism business surveys, visitor surveys and organisational secondary data analysis to improve business performance.
- BSc (Hons) in Rural Resource Management
- MA in Tourism and Social Responsibility - University of Exeter
- PhD - Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Plymouth
- Film-induced tourism activity
- Holidays and the family
- Sustainable tourism planning and application
- Tourism events and attractions.
Dr Connell’s research interests focus around niche forms of tourism activity, such as film-induced tourism and tourism attractions, as well as what might be considered to be core tourism interests including sustainable tourism, transport and resource management issues.
Film-induced tourism activity
This is an area of research that investigates tourism activity primarily stimulated by viewing real-life locations in fictional settings through film or television programmes. The impact of film-induced tourism has been witnessed in many locations world-wide (for example the tourist-generating phenomena created by films like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and Braveheart) and a growing body of research seeks to measure and evaluate its effects. Dr Connell is recognised as a leading contributor to this research theme through her work on the implications of the children’s TV programme Balamory (BBC) for the filming location, a small town on the Isle of Mull on Scotland’s west coast. The impacts of film tourism are significant in terms of the development, management and marketing of tourism spaces, while recognising the need to balance the visitor expectation and experience with community perceptions and interests.
Holidays and the family
Despite being one of the major influences on tourism decision-making, the way in which children experience tourism is little understood. Dr Connell is interested in the idea of ‘toddler tourism’ and the experiences of young children on holiday. Part of this interest stems from her work on Balamory and film tourism, and in particular looking at the differences in visit experiences between children and their parents/carers.
Sustainable tourism planning and application
Sustainable tourism is now a well–established perspective within tourism management, although its translation from ideology to policy to application is still fraught with difficulties for practitioners and academics alike. Dr Connell is interested in how this process operates and the challenges that face tourism regions and destinations in striving towards the goals of sustainable development. Her work on tourist transport and itinerary mapping identified the dominance of the private car in experiencing a National Park, which remains an issue for those seeking to promote more sustainable forms of travel.
Tourism events and attractions
The ever-increasing number and scale of events and festivals indicates a growing interest in, at one end of the spectrum, bidding for and staging mega events, through to the development of small-scale community-style festivals. Dr Connell’s current research focuses on the interplay between events and visitor attractions, and how events can be employed as a mechanism to boost visitor awareness, numbers and expenditure, and to create new markets. She is currently engaged on a project investigating this relationship in Scottish visitor attractions.
Current research activity
Currently Dr Connell is working on a study of seasonality in Scottish visitor attractions, in conjunction with the Association of Scottish Visitor Attractions. A particular focus of this investigation is the role and significance of special events held at attractions in the off-peak season (October to March). In addition, she is working with colleagues at Massey University, New Zealand, on a longitudinal study of local government tourism planning under the Resource Management Act, and the way in which sustainable development principles are embedded within the local planning and development control framework. She is currently supervising a number of PhD students in the field of Tourism, with a subject focus on event tourism, film tourism and tourism activity in Scotland.
Publications by category
Publications by year
Conferences and invited presentations
- ‘Issues and Prospects for the Family Tourism Market’, VisitScotland, Edinburgh, Prospects for UK Tourism Markets Seminar, 19th January 2005
- Editorial Board member of Service Business: An International Journal
Developing innovative and student-centred teaching and learning mechanisms is a particular aspect of Dr Connell’s teaching, and she strives to supplement in-class work with live case studies, inputs from external agencies and field visits. Her ethos is to adopt an applied approach to Tourism teaching, allowing students to develop appreciation, knowledge and insights of real-world issues and applications, alongside more conceptual and theoretical debates. Transferring research into teaching is a central facet of her approach to engaging students in their studies. Dr Connell is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.