In this research, a case study on travel industry discourse on climate change, tourism mobility, and aviation in the Netherlands is used to better understand the role of sustainable tourism research in the broader tourism, aviation, and climate change debate. In order to do so, a discourse analysis based on concepts utilized by Duineveld and Van Assche (2011) is executed. A detailed analysis of the process of emergence and solidification is presented in terms of pathways, sites, and techniques of object formation, based on an analysis of interviews with actors in the travel industry, and an analysis of media items. In the rising discussion about mobility, new objects were constructed and played out by the travel industry. In some cases, newly formed objects were presented as facts, based on commissioned results rather than discourses. It was found that sustainable tourism research plays a role in the tourism, mobility, climate change, and aviation debate in the Netherlands. Hereby especially Paul Peeters’ PhD role was significant. This research argues that studying this process of creating impact is important, since it allows clarification of the process of object formation, which is still an understudied topic. It contributes to a better understanding of how research impact develops, by showing the political dimensions of impact creation, implicating that academia can achieve impact by making use of specified techniques. Furthermore, a better understanding of the world of the travel industry is created, wherefore policymakers obtain a better understanding of this world.
Author: J. Buit (2019)