Postgraduate tourism research in Australia: a trend analysis 1969-2005

Document Type

Conference publication

Publication details

Postprint of: Laing, JH & Weiler, B 2008, 'Postgraduate tourism research in Australia: a trend analysis 1969-2005', in S Richardson, L Fredline, A Patiar & M Ternel (eds), CAUTHE 2008: Tourism and Hospitality Research, Training and Practice: “Where the 'bloody hell' are we?, Gold Coast, Qld., 11-14 February, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Qld. ISBN: 9781921291333

Peer Reviewed



This paper draws on an archival analysis of 461 dissertations completed by research Masters and PhD students in Australia over the past forty years primarily to identify patterns, trends and gaps in postgraduate tourism research, as well as to explore the contributions that different disciplines make to postgraduate tourism research. The results reveal an uneven distribution of research both geographically and with respect to discipline, with a noticeable emphasis on business-related dissertations and an increasing focus on environmental topics. In terms of trends over time, there have been periods of slow growth, rapid growth and, more recently, slight decline in the numbers of postgraduate tourism theses. Also revealing are the gaps with respect to disciplinary context and focus, providing a valuable platform for new research.