Dr Craig Wight

Dr Craig Wight

Lecturer in Hospitality and Tourism Management

Plymouth School of Tourism & Hospitality (Faculty of Business)


Craig Wight is a Lecturer in Hospitality and Tourism. He has a career background in restaurant management and catering, having worked as a chef and front of house manager for Bowland Inns during most of the 1990s and as a head chef in Airlie beach, Australia in the late 1990s. He has led a range of consultancy and research projects including the development of a socio-economic impact study for the 'Freedom' music festival in Hull and and a review of tourist information services for Visit Hull and East Yorkshire. Craig has also advised both the Scottish and UK National Tourism Organisations having undertaken an analysis of the structures and budgets of International NTOs for VisitBritain and having co-authored a scenario planning report with VisitScotland. Craig has led on a number of socio-economic impact analyses and consultation exercises in Scotland and the UK. In 2009 he developed a tourism and hospitality strategy for West Dunbartonshire Council and between 2004 and 2007 he undertook socio-economic impact analyses of the Burns and A’ That festival in Ayrshire. He has had academic research published in the fields of visitor attractions, museum interpretation, the role of museums and heritage in nation building and culinary tourism. He has presented at several tourism conferences including the 'Myths of Tourism' conference in Zadar, Croatia in 2012 and the 2nd Advances in Hospitality and Tourism conference in Corfu, Greece in 2011. He also presented research at the first National Association of Interpretation conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 2006 (on Lithuanian heritage) and the second in this series in Vancouver, Canada in 2007 (on network marketing in rural tourism). He has a PhD from Plymouth University comprising of a discourse analysis of representations of genocide in museums and sites of memory.


PhD (Plymouth University, 2014), PgCAP (Plymouth University, 2012), Masters in Research with Distinction, (Glasgow Caledonian University, 2006), BA Hons (First Class) International Travel with Information Systems (Glasgow Caledonian University, 2004).

Roles on external bodies

Occasional editor for Tourism Managemen

Teaching interests

Consumption of tourism and hospitality services Dark tourism Research methods Destination development Business development

Research interests

I have undertaken academic research into heritage management and marketing in the UK and in Europe. I have published widely on this subject in accredited journals and books and I have presented findings of my research to audiences including to delegates of the 2006 and 2007 Interpreting World Heritage Conferences in San Juan, Puerto Rico (2006) and Vancouver, Canada (2007). I also undertake research into ‘culinary tourism’. I am currently researching 'disgraced monuments' as meaning makers in Eastern European heritage sites.

Other research

See 'grants and contracts' for a comprehensive chronology of commercial research.

Grants & contracts

I have undertaken impact studies on festivals and events and also research into museums and memorials in terms of interpretation, national discourses and marketing. I have completed the following business consultancy outputs recently: • A consultation with a cross section of businesses in West Dunbartonshire to develop a visitor loyalty product • A review of the impact of modernisation on the tourist information service infrastructure in Hull and East Yorkshire • Training and management consultancy towards the launch of a Virtual Tourism Information Centre for Visit Hull and East Yorkshire • A service quality training programme titled St Lucia First on the island of St Lucia • A Stakeholder Consultation and Tourism Strategy for West Dunbartonshire Council • A strategic review of attractions consortia in North Wales. • A case study analysis of the structures and budgets of National Tourism Organisations in 6 countries • A Cultural Tourism ‘Learning Journey’ in Glasgow for Norwegian Business owners and academics (learning from best practice amongst Glasgow’s cultural spaces). • Scenario planning (Scotland’s Tourism in 2030, Key Challenges). This has involved in depth industry consultation through a series of workshops, interviews and desk research. • Socio-Economic impact Analyses of the Freedom 2008/09 Festivals in Hull, East Yorkshire. • Project Manager of the William Wilberforce 2007 Bicentenary celebrations in Hull, East Yorkshire for Hull City Council. I managed the primary research element of this project interviewing several events audiences, Members of European Parliament and members of the public to understand awareness and perceptions of William Wilberforce in Hull with ramifications for tourism focussed urban regeneration. I analysed all data sets for this project and produced reportage. • Project Officer for the ICONS Branding (EQUAL) project. This has involved a rigorous, two year period of research and business development activity in two pilot regions within Scotland. The research has piloted the potential of regional tourism icons in the tourism business growth process. Outputs include an established network of micro-business operators in South Lanarkshire with a shared goal and vision to develop the profile of tourism for the region. I have also managed the development of www.visitclydevalley.co.uk to completion in December 2007 as part of this project. The project is currently being mainstreamed to a number of policy influencing figures in Scotland. • Project manager for economic impact analyses of the Burns 2007/2006 celebrations and project support for economic analyses of the /2005/2004 Festivals in Ayrshire for the Burns Festival company • Input towards a ‘Tourism Intelligence Unit’ benchmarking study which included the undertaking of interviews with a number of international tourism experts (from Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Ireland) • Joint project leader reviewing travel trade show formats for the Canadian Tourism Commission

Research groups

  • Service & Enterprise Research Centre (SERC)