Professor Sheela Agarwal
Plymouth Business School (Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business)
I completed a PhD at the School of Geography, Exeter University, UK in 1995 and before arriving at Plymouth University in 2000, I worked for the Centre for Tourism, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield as a Lecturer and Senior Lecturer in Tourism Management.
Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
Former Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society / Institute of British Geographers
Former Co-opted Executive Member of the Association of Tourism in Higher Education (2003-2007)
Member of the Association of Tourism in Higher Education
Roles on external bodies
Former Trustee of Victim Support Devon
Co-opted Governor for St. Andrews Primary School, Cullompton, Devon
Specialise in the teaching of tourism and the environment, tourist behaviour, sustainable tourism, tourism planning, tourism development and culture, heritage, screen and literary tourism, and disaster and crisis management in tourism and hospitality at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
Staff serving as external examiners
External Examiner for BSc Tourism Degree, University of Ulster, Ulster
Former External Examiner for the BA Tourism Degree, Trinity College Carmarthen, Carmarthen
Former External Examiner for Tourism and Hospitality Undergraduate degress, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds
External Examiner for several PhDs (15 in total):
- Newsome-Magadza, S. (2020) Just passing through: stakeholder constructs and value in overland truck tourism in NW Zimbabwe, PhD Thesis, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK.
- Alhomaid A. (2018) The impact of advertising on Young Female Consumer Behaviour in Saudi Arabia, PhD Thesis, Exeter University, UK.
- Braim, K. (2017) Managing Cultural Tourism in Post-Conflict Areas: The Case of Kurdistan Federal Region in Iraq, PhD Thesis, Nottingham University, UK.
- Buaban, M. (2016) Community based creative tourism management to enhance local sustainable development in Kanchanaburi Province, Thailand, PhD Thesis, Exeter University, UK.
- Alharbi, M.M. (2015) The potential impact of transnational franchising in promoting and developing tourism business in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, PhD Thesis, Exeter University, UK.
- Mark Speakman (2014) Embracing the Edge of Chaos: Tourism Crisis Management in the UK and Mexico from a Complexity Perspective.
- Wai Lee Chen (2013) An Analysis of the Tourism Cluster Development Model and the Links Between Destination Competitiveness and Socio-Economic Prosperity. The Cases of Two Small Developing Economies: Bali and Brunei.
- Jarrett, D. (2013) A Socio-Cultural Analysis of the Traditional Seaside Resort and its Contemporary Meaning to Tourists with Specific Relevance to Morecambe, UK, PhD Thesis, University of Central Lancashire.
- Buddhichiwin, P. (2013) Marketing Strategies of UK Universities to International Students: The Decision-Making Process and Experiences of Thai Students, University of Exeter, UK.
- Wayika, T. (2011) Overcoming the Barriers Towards the Inclusive Design of Tourism, PhD Thesis, University of Surrey, UK.
- Akkaranggoon, S. (2011) Supply Chain Management Practice in the Hotel Industry: An Examination of Hotel Food Supply Chains in South West England, PhD Thesis, Exeter University, UK.
- Hewlett, D. (2009) Community Participation in Local Decision-Making in Protected Areas: the Case of the New Forest National Park, Hampshire, England, PhD Thesis, Bournemouth University, UK.
- Wang, Y. (2008) Actor Perspectives and Tourism Policy Networks in Hangzhou, China, PhD Thesis, Centre for Tourism and Cultural Change, Sheffield Hallam University, UK.
- Mosedale, J. (2007) Corporate Geographies of Transnational Tourism Companies, PhD Thesis, Department of Geography, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK.
- Tetley, S. (1997) Visitor attitudes to authenticity of literary and TV related destinations, PhD Thesis, Department of Leisure and Food Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
I am interested in the ways in which space and place may be theorised. Beginning from primarily an economic foci, particularly around the effect, influence and consequences of processes of structural change on nations, regions and local areas, this line of research is expanding to explore other areas of geographic interest, notably the nature of tourism consumption and production, the changing role of the state, local governance, social exclusion, collaboration, collective action and other issues associated with the planning and sustainability of tourism. I have a wealth of expertise in socio-economic issues associated with seaside towns including multiple deprivation and inequality. In addition, I also have a developing interest in climate change and adaptation and mitigation strategies, in plastic pollution, disability, and in disaster and crisis management focusing in particular on security risk management and resilience.
Research degrees awarded to supervised students
Ph.D completions: (13 in total):
- Ghatnekar, P. (2017) Persuasive Technology in Tourism Online Experiences and Implications on Tourist Buying Behaviour. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Kroger, H. (2016) The role of sustainability in enhancing place performance through an identity-based approach to place branding. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Ali, M.F.S. (2015) Critical firm-based enablers-mediators-outcomes (CFMESO): a new integrated model for performance innovation, performance drivers in the context of US restaurants. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Jakes, S. (2015) Social exclusion, resort decline and the English seaside. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Wight, A.C. (2014) A discourse analysis of representations of genocide in museums and sites of memory. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Elbaz, A. (2013) Actor network theory, tourism organisations and the development of sustainable community livelihoods. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Semley, N. (2012) An evaluation of community perceptions of tourism and crime. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK.
- Stansbie, P. (2011) Internship design and its impact on satisfaction, intrinsic motivation and student career choices. PhD Thesis, Faculty of Business, Plymouth University, UK
- Murphy-Underhill, C. (2005) The influence of nationality on interpretations of Ireland's destination imagery. PhD, Thesis, Plymouth Business School, Plymouth University, UK.
- Gutic, J. (2003) Stakeholder identification and assessment in a Venezuelan National Park. Ph.D Thesis, School of Leisure and Food Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
- Yuksel, F. (2003) Centre-local relations and tourism planning in Belek, Turkey. Ph.D Thesis, School of Leisure and Food Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
- Medeiros de Araujo, L. (2002) Stakeholder assessment and collaborative tourism planning. The Costa Dourada Project, Brazil. Ph.D Thesis, School of Leisure and Food Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
- Yuksel, A. (2000) Food service experience and tourist satisfaction: implications for destination management. Ph.D Thesis, School of Leisure and Food Management, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK.
Grants & contracts
Developing indicators of sustainable tourism (European Research Network of Sustainable Tourism, European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme, c. £30,000, with Whittlesea, E.)
Disability typology and differences in information needs (with Lee, B., 2011, Korean Research Foundation)
Global-local interactions in English seaside resorts (British Academy, 2003-2004, £3237)
Differential Economic Performance in Rural Areas (DEFRA, 2003-2004 £c. 80,000)
MARKETOWNS: the role of small towns in rural development (European Commission 2001-2004, 1.2 million Euros)
The South Yorkshire Tourism Business Development Project (European Union, Objective 2, 1998-1999).
Key publications are highlightedJournals
Reports & invited lectures
I have been an invited key note speaker on many occasions all around the world, delivering presentations on various socio-economic aspects of coastal tourism and seaside towns.
Co-organised with South West Tourism, NECSTouR Sustainable Tourism Conference, 17th-19th June 2009, University of Plymouth, Plymouth.