4th Floor,
Commerce Building, cnr Union and Clyde Streets,
University of Otago,
Dunedin 9054, New Zealand


Tel 64 3 479 8520
Fax 64 3 479 9034

James Higham

Office - Commerce 4.53
Tel 64 3 479 8500
Email james.higham@otago.ac.nz


Following my initial appointment to the department in 1994, I now hold the position of Professor of Tourism (School of Business, University of Otago) and Visiting Professor of Sustainable Tourism at the Norwegian School of Hotel Management, University of Stavanger (Norway). My current international research collaborations are with Professor Tom Hinch (University of Alberta, Canada), sport and tourism; Dr. Scott Cohen (University of Surrey, UK), Associate Professor Paul Peeters (NHTV Breda University) and Professor Stefan Gössling (Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies), climate change and sustainable mobility; Dr. Rob Williams (University of St. Andrews, Scotland) and Associate Professor Lars Bejder (Murdoch University), tourism and cetaceans; Dr. Jan Vidar Haukeland (University of Natural Science), Odd Inge Vistad (NINA) and Kreg Lindburg (Oregan State University), Tourism, recreation and Norwegian national park policy (2011-2014). 

I serve as an Associate Editor of The Journal of Sport & Tourism (Taylor and Francis) and on the editorial boards of Journal of Sustainable Tourism, Journal of Ecotourism and Tourism in Marine Environments.

Research Interests

My current research interests lie in two general areas:

1. Tourism and global environmental change
The focus of my research ranges from global to local scales of analysis and includes tourist interactions with wildlife, tourism and wilderness, and the relationship between tourism, recreation and climate change. In 2009 I initiated a continuing research programme titled ‘climate change and long-haul aviation’ (with Dr. Scott Cohen, University of Surrey), the focus of which now extends to various aspects of climate change perceptions, aeromobility and behaviour change. In July 2012, with Dr. Scott Cohen (University of Surrey), Associate Prof Paul Peeters (NHTV Breda University) and Professor Stefan Gössling (Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies, Germany), we hosted a workshop in Freiburg (Germany) addressing psychologcal and behavioural aspects of climate change and tourism mobility. Interests in the tourism-environment relationship extend to vulnerability and adaptability in terms of long term global climate change as well as more immediate and localised natural disaster events. Work in the field of sustainable tourist interactions with cetaceans currently centres on the co-editing of the following volume with Associate Professor Lars Bejder (Murdoch University) and Dr. Rob Williams (University of St. Andrews):

Whale watching: Sustainable Tourism and Ecological Management







Higham, J.E.S., Bejder, L. & Williams, R. (Eds). Whale-watching, sustainable tourism and ecological management. Cambridge University Press (expected February 2014).

Further information about this book can be found at the following link: www.cambridge.org/9780521195973

2. Sport and tourism.
My research collaboration with Professor Tom Hinch (University of Alberta, Canada) dates to 1998. Our research interests in the field of sport and tourism include sport and spatial travel flows, sport and tourism seasonality, sport and authentic experiences, and globalization, sport and place. Our recent publications in this field include two books:

Higham, J.E.S. & Hinch, T.D. (2009). Sport and tourism: Globalization, mobility and identity. Oxford: Elsevier. ISBN: 978-0-7506-8610-5.

Hinch, T.D. & Higham, J.E.S. (2011). Sport Tourism Development (Edition 2). Bristol: Channel View Publications. ISBN-13: 978-1-84541-195-4 (hbk). ISBN-13: 978-1-84541-195-7 (pbk)

Major Works



Critical issues in ecotourism - James Higham

Hinch, T.D. & Higham, J.E.S. 2011, Sport Tourism Development. Volume 13 of Aspects of Tourism. Bristol: Channel View Publications.

Hinch, T.D. & Higham, J.E.S. 2004, Sport Tourism Development. Aspects of Tourism Book Series. Clevedon: Channel View Publications.

Higham, J.E.S. (ed.) 2007. Critical issues in ecotourism: understanding a complex tourism phenomenon. Oxford: Elsevier.

marine wildlife cover


book cover

Higham, J.E.S. & Lück, M. (Eds) 2007. Marine wildlife and tourism management: Insights from natural and social sciences. Wallingford: CABI Publishing.

Hall, C.M. & Higham, J.E.S. (Eds). 2005. Tourism, recreation and climate change: International perspectives. Aspects of Tourism Book Series. Clevedon: Channel View Publications.

Higham, J.E.S. (Ed) 2005. Sport Tourism Destinations: Issues, opportunities and analysis. Oxford: Elsevier.

Sport and Tourism Book Cover

 Higham, J.E.S & Hinch, T.D. 2009, Sport and Tourism. Globalization, Mobility and Identity. Oxford: Elsevier.

Selected Recent Publications (last five years)

Cohen, S.A., Higham, J.E.S. & Reis, A. (2013). Sociological barriers to sustainable discretionary air travel behaviour. Journal of Sustainable Tourism. doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2013.809092

Mitchell, R., Wooliscroft, B. & Higham, J.E.S. (2013). Applying sustainability in National Park management: Balancing public and private interests. Journal of Sustainable Tourism 21(5): 695-715.

Higham, J.E.S. (2012). Wildlife social learning should inform sustainable tourism management. Animal Conservation 15: 438-439.

Hopkins, D., Higham, J.E.S. & Becken, S. (2012). Climate change in a regional context: Relative vulnerability in the Australasian skier market. Regional Environmental Change (accepted for publication).  

Higham, J.E.S. & Vistad, O. (2011). Tourism in protected natural areas: The Nordic-Baltic context. Scandinavian Journal of Tourism and Hospitality. 11:1-12 (Special Issue on Tourism in Protected Natural Areas).

Cohen, S.A., Higham, J.E.S. & Cavaliere, C.T. (2011). Binge flying: Behavioural addiction and climate change. Annals of Tourism Research 38(3) doi:10.1016/j.annals.2011.01.013

Higham, J.E.S. & Cohen, S.A. (2011). Canary in the coalmine: Norwegian attitudes towards climate change and extreme long-haul air travel to Aotearoa/New Zealand. Tourism Management 32(1):98-105.

Higham, J.E.S. & Shelton, E. (2011). Tourism and wildlife habituation: Reduced population fitness or cessation of impact? Tourism Management 32(4):1290-1298.

Cohen, S.A. & Higham, J.E.S. (2011). Eyes wide shut? UK Consumer perceptions on aviation climate impacts and travel decisions to New Zealand. Current Issues in Tourism 14(4):323-335.

Walker, G., Hinch, T.D. & Higham, J.E.S. (2010). Athletes as tourists: Mode of experience and achievement orientation. Journal of Sport & Tourism 15(4):287-305.

Mitchell, R.W., Wooliscroft, B. & Higham, J.E.S. (2010). Sustainable market orientation: A new approach to managing marketing strategy. Journal of Macromarketing 30(2): 160-170 (Special Issue on Environmental Sustainability) [Most frequently downloaded JMM article 2010].

Reis, A. & Higham, J.E.S. (2009). Recreation Conflict and Sport Hunting: Moving beyond goal interference towards social sustainability. Journal of Sport & Tourism 14(2/3):83-108. (Lead article in Special Issue on Sport tourism sustainability).

Higham, J.E.S., Bejder, L. & Lusseau, D. (2009). An integrated and adaptive management model to address the long-term sustainability of tourist interactions with cetaceans. Environmental Conservation 35(4): 294-302.

Higham, J.E.S. & Bejder, L. (2008). Managing wildlife-based tourism: Edging slowly towards sustainability? Current Issues in Tourism 11(1):63-74.

Higham, J.E.S. & Lusseau, D. (2008). Slaughtering the goose that lays the golden egg: Are whale-watching and whaling mutually exclusive? Current Issues in Tourism 11(1): 75-83.

Higham, J.E.S., Lusseau, D. & Hendry, W. (2008). The viewing platforms from which animals are observed in the wild: A discussion of emerging research directions. Journal of Ecotourism 7(2/3):132-141 (invited from keynote). Special Issue on Australian Wildlife Tourism.

Higham, J.E.S. & Lusseau, D. (2007). Urgent need for empirical research into whaling and whale-watching. Conservation Biology 21(2): 554-558.

Current PhD/Post doctoral supervision

Debbie Hopkins. Climate change vulnerability and adaption in the New Zealand ski industry.
Wiebke Finkler. Sustainable whale watching: A science communication approach.
Christina Cavaliere. Cultivating Climate Consciousness: Connections to Farms, Food and Place.
Rob Mitchell. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) in tourism: The case of New Zealand national parks.
Caroline Orchiston (Postdoctoral Fellow 2011-2013). Post-earthquake tourism recovery: The case of Christchurch, New Zealand.

Recently completed PhD supervisions

Dave Lindquist. Kaikoura, Dusky dolphins and tourism (advisor)
Richard Wright. Sport, tourism and identity (primary)
Arianne Reis. Recreational conflict in mountain environments (primary)
Caroline Orchiston. Tourism and Seismic Risk (primary)
Åsa Grahn. Personal benefits of educational tour experiences (primary)
Scott Cohen. Finding self through long term travel (secondary)

Curriculum Vitae

University of Otago Department of Tourism