Department of Geography

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We conduct qualified scientific research and provide consulting services for companies and for public administration. Our core competences lie in the following research fields.

Tourism geography

The scientific perspective on tourism is highly interdisciplinary. This is one of the major strengths of tourism research as a lot of the acquired knowledge is generated where different scientific disciplines overlap. Crucial in this context are the theoretical models and concepts as well as the empirical findings provided by the economic geography because touristic activities and processes always have a spatial dimension. Consequently, developments in the tourism industry, and the industry’s structures and functionality depend on the original and derived offering and the spatially diverging activity spheres of tourism supply and demand. Moreover the economic, ecologic and sociocultural effects of tourism vary depending on spatial differences on several aggregation levels (e.g. travel areas) and on different scale levels (e.g. local, regional, national, international, global). Besides the localization of tourism activity, it is highly interesting to find out why tourism activity is equally or unequally distributed. Generally speaking, the question concerning the spatial “where”, “where to?” and the “why exactly there?” of tourism activity are of vital importance for tourism geography.

From a theoretical perspective, tourism geography has its own explanatory approaches, models and theories but integrates those of other involved disciplines (for example economics or social science). As a result the of product life cycle model and SWOT analysis are partly being used, in a modified form. Furthermore, tourism geography uses the wide field of quantitative and qualitative methods of economic geography.

The main goal of tourism geography is to capture, describe, explain and interpret patterns of spatial distribution and interaction that result from the economically, socio-culturally and ecologically responsible way of thinking and acting of different protagonists. Based on these interpretations, feasible recommendations for various stakeholders of tourism are derived.