HRTM's Jha invited to lecture in Thailand

CEHS Assistant Professor of Practice Dipra Jha (center left) in conversation with Raweewan Auepanwiriyakul, vice president for academic affairs, National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) in Bangkok, Thailand. (NIDA photo.)

HRTM's Jha invited to lecture in Thailand

28 Sep 2017    

Dipra Jha, assistant professor of practice in Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management, traveled to Thailand Sept. 10-17 to deliver invited lectures on innovation in the tourism and hospitality industries. The lecture events were hosted by two of the country’s most prestigious institutions, the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA), Thailand’s top university for graduate education at their campuses in Bangkok and Phuket; and by Prince of Songkla University in Phuket. The Thai Hotel Association Southern Chapter supported these events, and all three sessions were well attended by students, university faculty and industry representatives from hotel, events, tourism and restaurant sectors.

Citing global trends in tourism and hospitality, Jha shared examples of world-class innovation in built environment, technology, exclusivity and personalization and how these could be adapted to be effective in local environments. He alluded to previous collaboration with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and the country’s new 20-Year National Strategy and the Thailand 4.0 policy, which the government plans to achieve by reforming existing “First S-Curve” industries—agriculture, food, affluent, medical and wellness tourism—and promoting “New S-Curve” industries such as aviation and logistics. With dramatic shifts in consumer mindsets and visitor expectations, Jha emphasized the need for developing robust innovation pipelines within the hospitality and tourism sector, so destinations and providers can stay ahead of the curve.

“NIDA was very pleased to invite Professor Dipra Jha to deliver lectures on innovation in tourism and hospitality, at our campus in Phuket and the headquarter in Bangkok,” said Paithoon Monpanthong, assistant dean of academic affairs, at NIDA’s Graduate School of Tourism Management. “Our students and faculty enjoyed his presentations and they greatly benefited from the information and experiences he shared.”

Founded in 1966, with financial support from the Ford Foundation and academic assistance from the Midwest Universities Consortium for International Activities (MUCIA), NIDA is recognized as Thailand’s top university dedicated exclusively to graduate education. It was established following His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s vision of advancing Thailand’s development through the establishment of an advanced educational institution to prepare Thai citizens to become agents of change for national development. NIDA has ten graduate schools and currently enrolls approximately 9,000 students. During his visit to NIDA’s main campus in Bangkok, Jha was invited to meet with Raweewan Auepanwiriyakul, vice president for academic affairs. Among other things, a potential memorandum of understanding between the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and NIDA was discussed.

The Kingdom of Thailand is a Southeast Asian nation of 68 million people. It has diverse cultural, religious and culinary traditions and is a popular leisure destination for visitors from Europe and North America. According to the World Travel & Tourism Council, total contribution of tourism to Thailand’s economy was $82.5 billion or 20.6% of the country’s GDP in 2016. Travel and tourism supported 5.73 million jobs or 15.1% of total national employment for the same year.

“I am very glad that I attended Professor Jha’s talk on hospitality innovation, as it was very insightful and had lot of great information,” said Jasmine Rawlinson, guest relations manager at the Wanakarn Relais & Chateaux resort. “I have been considering studying a master’s in hospitality and Professor's Jha's talk has shown me how studying the industry can benefit and support my work within hospitality. I will certainly be holding future lectures to his standard of teaching.”

Tourism is Nebraska’s third largest earner of revenue from outside the state after agriculture and manufacturing; bringing in excess of $4.7 billion annually and supporting 46,200 jobs. According to the U.S. Travel Association, tax revenues generated by domestic and international travelers in Nebraska in 2015 totaled over $667 million. Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management is one of the fastest growing majors at Nebraksa and resides jointly in the College of Education and Human Sciences and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources.

College of Education and Human Sciences
Nutrition and Health Sciences
Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management