Keynote Speakers

Michael Hall (University of Canterbury)

Tom Selwyn (SOAS, University of London)

Freya Higgins-Desbiolles (University of South Australia/ University of Otago)

Kyle Powys White (Michigan State University)

C. Michael Hall is a Professor in the Department of Management, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand and Docent in the Department of Geography, University of Oulu, Finland, as well as holding visiting positions at the University of Eastern Finland, and Kalmar and Lund Universities in Sweden. He has published widely on a range of tourism and mobility related issues and has longstanding interests in politics, power and the environment. Recent writing focuses on such issues as climate and environmental change, sustainable local food systems and the politics of consumption, governance, and the regulation of mobility.

Tom Selwyn is Director of Studies of the Masters in Travel, Tourism, and Pilgrimage in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. He is widely published in the fields of tourism, hospitality, imagery, the landscape, political symbolism, and post-conflict development and has particular geographical interests in the Mediterranean region. He has edited/co-edited The Tourist Image (1996), (with Jeremy Boissevain) Contesting the Foreshore (2004), (with Rachel Radmilli) Turning Back to the Mediterranean (2005), (with Julie Scott) Thinking Through Tourism (2010), and (with Maria Kousis and David Clark) Contested Mediterranean Spaces (2011).  Since 1995 he has directed international projects on pilgrimage, tourism, and development for the European Commission and other international institutions, in the Mediterranean and Balkan regions. He is Honorary Librarian and Council member of the Royal Anthropological Institute (RAI) and was awarded the RAI’s Lucy Mair Medal in 2009.

Freya Higgins-Desbiolles is a Senior Lecturer (School of Management of the University of South Australia/ Department of Tourism of the University of Otago). She holds academic degrees in politics and international relations. She came to academia after ten years working in the development arena with non-government organisations such as the Peace Corps, Community Aid Abroad and the Global Education Centre of South Australia. She views herself as an activist academic and through her works seeks to challenge tourism academia on multiple levels. Her research in tourism has included a focus on the concerns of “host” communities, the impacts of tourism, Indigenous tourism and justice through tourism. She has recently worked with Indigenous Australian communities and Palestinians on projects fostering the use of tourism for community benefit. Projects have included working on the efforts to foster “pilgrimages for transformation” to Palestine and fostering educational tourism opportunities for the Ngarrindjeri community of South Australia. She has served as an advisor to the Ecumenical Coalition on Tourism, a member of the Executive Committee of the Responsible Tourism Network and on the Executive Committee of the International Institute for Peace through Tourism (Australian chapter). She is also a dedicated teacher who seeks to empower her students to be critical thinkers prepared to contribute to positive (tourism) futures. In 2009 she won an Australian national teaching award for her work in teaching Indigenous content through her undergraduate course on Indigenous tourism.

Kyle Whyte is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Michigan State University and affiliated faculty for Peace and Justice Studies, Environmental Science and Policy, the Center for Regional Food Systems, and American Indian Studies. He is an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Dr. Whyte writes on environmental justice, the philosophy of technology and American Indian philosophy. His articles have appeared in journals such as Synthese, Human Ecology, Journal of Global Ethics, American Journal of Bioethics, Journal of Agricultural & Environmental Ethics, Philosophy & Technology, Ethics, Policy & Environment, Environmental Justice, and Continental Philosophy Review. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Spencer Foundation. He is a member of the American Philosophical Association Committee on Public Philosophy, Michigan Environmental Justice Work Group, and co-Chair for the annual Growing Our Food System conference in Lansing, Michigan.