May 2, 2024

For Immediate Release

The TTRA Awards Program aims to inspire and recognize remarkable achievements in travel and tourism research and marketing. Entries undergo rigorous evaluation based on criteria such as quality, originality, creativity, usefulness, results, and their benefits to the travel and tourism industry.

“We are absolutely thrilled to acknowledge these outstanding individuals who have made significant contributions to the field of travel and tourism research,” said Dr. Shuangyu Xu, 2024 Awards Chair and faculty at the University of Missouri. “Their work embodies the spirit of innovation and excellence that propels our industry forward.”

The winners of the 2024 TTRA Awards are as follows:

  • J. Desmond Slattery Award (Academic Award): Philip Chitaunga, University of Georgia
    For his dissertation on the sustainability of seismic tourism infrastructure developments and their impact on porters and trekkers in Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, Tanzania.
  • Keeling Dissertation Award (Academic Award): Dr. Xingyu Huang, Royal Holloway, University of London
    For his dissertation on the influence of social media influencers on decision-making within tourism and hospitality.
  • MMGY Shifflet Award for Research Excellence (Practitioner Award): Bryanna Kumpula, Leduc County, Alberta, Canada
    For her project on the redevelopment of the Closed Nisku Recreation Centre into a business and entrepreneur centre.

“These distinguished individuals have not only advanced the field of travel and tourism research but have also provided invaluable insights that contribute to the betterment of the industry,” added Dr. Xu.

TTRA extends its gratitude to the esteemed judging panel and awards committee members who played a vital role in the rigorous evaluation process. Their expertise and thorough review ensured the integrity and quality of the awards.

The winners will be officially recognized and presented with their awards during the TTRA Annual International Conference in Burlington. TTRA encourages all conference attendees to join in celebrating the remarkable achievements of these exceptional individuals.

For more information about the TTRA Awards and the Annual International Conference, please visit the TTRA website at

About TTRA:

The Travel and Tourism Research Association is a leading global organization dedicated to advancing research in the travel and tourism industry. TTRA fosters collaboration among researchers, practitioners, and educators to generate impactful insights that shape the future of the industry. TTRA recognizes outstanding contributions through its awards program and promotes excellence in travel and tourism research and marketing.

Media Contact:

Mike Kierstead
Travel and Tourism Research Association
Email: [email protected]


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