Professor of Tourism
Director of the New Zealand Tourism Research Institute
School of Hospitality and Tourism
Tourism is important to the New Zealand economy and the people of the South Pacific Islands, but so is a sustainable way of life. Professor Simon Milne has been conducting research in this part of the world since 1985 and has a special interest in the links between tourism and sustainable community development.
The tourism industries of Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Kiribati and Tuvalu are among a number that Professor Milne has analysed. His work in this sector takes him all over the world including Vietnam, Kenya and Russia. And the research conducted has benefited a range of international organisations including the United Nations Development Programme, the World Tourism Organisation and the European Union.
After completing a PhD in economic geography at Cambridge University in 1989, Professor Milne moved to Montreal, Canada where he taught at McGill University until 1998. During this period he became a world leader in tourism research establishing the McGill Tourism Group before his return to New Zealand.
He is now the Professor of Tourism at AUT and has been a director of the New Zealand Tourism Research Institute since its inception in 1999.
The promotion of education for Pasifika people has been a passion for Professor Milne throughout his career. Despite a host of accolades and achievements over the last 20 years, he regards the supervision of Dr Tim West-Newman - AUT’s first Pasifika PhD student - as a career highlight.