NS 29 PhD Seminar

Shaping mobile futures: Challenges and possibilities in precarious times

PhD seminar in conjunction with the 29th Nordic Symposium on Tourism and Hospitality Research
20-21 September 2021 • Hólar University, Iceland


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Course information:

Credits: 5 ECTS.

Workload: About 150 work hours.

Level: PhD.

Semester: Fall 2021.

Course requirements: Obligatory attendance in the on-campus session at Hólar 20.-21.9.2021, a draft journal manuscript of 3000-5000 words due September 1st and a peer review of a submission by a fellow student due on September 20th.

Language of instruction: English.

Entrance requirements: Enrolment in a PhD program in tourism or related fields and an abstract of 250 words. To confirm your participation in the seminar please submit your abstract by the 22nd of June 2021. Abstracts should be submitted to: Ása Marta Sveinsdóttir asamarta@rmf.is

Course coordinators: Professor Guðrún Helgadóttir gudr@holar.is and Assistant professor Ingibjörg Sigurðardóttir inga@holar.is University of Hólar. Also on the organizing committee: Eyrún Jenný Bjarnadóttir ejb@rmf.is researcher at the Icelandic Tourism Research Centre and Magnús Haukur Ásgeirsson, mha@hi.is adjunkt, University of Iceland.

Course instructors: Professor Edward H. Huijbens, Wageningen University, Netherlands; Professor Outi Rantala, Lapland University, Finland; Professor Trude Furunes, chief editor of the Scandinavian Journal of Hospitality and Tourism.



Times are precarious and the usual order of things does not hold for the future. Everyday discourse directs attention towards global risks and crisis, calling for innovations and smart solutions that are transdisciplinary in nature. Academics face a broader mandate than ever to teach, research, as well as reach out to business, governments and grassroots in the search for a responsible future.

This is a PhD course about research and methodology, academic traditions and the transformations of contemporary discourses in an era of alternate understandings of truth and the importance of evidence. To address this the course uses one key concept; responsibility, one structure; the publication system and one practice; life in academia. 

Researchers engaged in inter- and transdisciplinary projects encounter powerful voices that call into question the validity and applicability of academic knowledge, proposing alternate truths. The traditional structure of publications as a system may undermine transformations in the public discourse on knowledge production and the application of research challenges young researchers to examine the epistemological enterprise and the ontological premises it rests on.

Academic integrity, the trends and traditions, the politics of research, inclusions and exclusions from the academic community, in short the nature of academic freedom and the role of the tourism researcher need constant reflection. It is a matter of responsibility to engage in public, professional and academic discourses as well as to create a democratic academic culture of integrity and inclusion.


Practical information:

The PhD seminar is held at Hólar University and the seminar fee includes transport from Reykjavík to Hólar, accommodation and meals in Hólar and transport to Akureyri in time for the opening reception of the 29th symposium on tourism and hospitality research.

The fee for PhD students is:

PhD student conference fee incl. PhD seminar: 65.000 ISK

PhD student conference fee excl. PhD seminar: 50.000 ISK

Participants will be picked up in Reykjavík in the early morning of Monday, September 20th and driven to Hólar University. In the early afternoon of Tuesday, September 21st, participants will be driven to Akureyri.


Testimonials from former participants at the PhD seminar in Hólar:

Patrick Brouder Vancouver Island University British Columbia Regional Innovation Chair (BCRIC) for Tourism and Sustainable Rural Development:

"Holar is the ideal location for a PhD seminar. The intimate campus setting is a perfect place for meaningful dialogue, both formal and informal, between the senior researchers leading the seminar and the students taking part in it. The quiet setting also affords students the time and space for study and reflection on the academic activities all the while inspired by the vistas of the Icelandic countryside."

Stian Stensland, associate professor Norwegian University of Life Sciences:

"The PhD seminar at Holar was a really nice experience both academically and culturally. The organizers got the chief editors from Annals of Tourism and Scandinavian Journal of Hospitality and Tourism to the PhD seminar which was a boost for us PhD-students. Culturally if was rewarding hearing about the history of the University going almost a thousand years back, its remote location, the scenery and barren landscape and the neighboring community."


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