Emerging Scholar Profile- Dr. Bozana Zekan
Dr. Bozana Zekan is an Assistant Professor / Senior Lecturer at the Department of Tourism and Service Management at MODUL University Vienna. Before joining the team at MODUL in 2008, she gathered various tourism industry experiences while working in Croatia, the USA, and Ireland. Bozana holds Associate in Applied Science and Bachelor of Science degrees with a major in Hotel and Resort Management from the American College of Management and Technology, Dubrovnik, Croatia. In addition, she holds a Master of Science in Service Management degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York, and lastly, a Doctor of Social and Economic Sciences (with honors) degree, which was awarded in 2016 from the Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna, Austria.
Her doctoral dissertation titled “Identifying Efficient Tourism Destinations and Modeling an Optimal Benchmarking Approach in a DEA Environment” focused primarily on competitiveness/efficiency, benchmarking of city destinations, and key performance indicators. Thus, Bozana’s core research area is destination management. Her doctoral dissertation was awarded with the prestigious Dr. Maria Schaumayer Stiftung Anerkennungsurkunde. She is also a recipient of several other awards such as: Service Leadership and Innovation International Award by the Rochester Institute of Technology; Wirtschaftskammerpreis – together with her colleagues Dr. Irem Önder and Dr. Ulrich Gunter – for the project titled “Sharing Economy: The Competitive Standing of Viennese Airbnb Accommodations” by the Wirtschaftskammer Wien; and Certificate of Excellence for Outstanding Teaching Performance by MODUL University Vienna. It is obvious that she likes both: researching and teaching!
Bozana is a loyal member of the International Association for Tourism Economics (IATE) and regularly presents her research at this conference. She is also a member of the International Institute of Forecasters (IIF) and as such will present at the 38th International Symposium on Forecasting (ISF). Moreover, she was an invited member of the scientific committee for Disruptions in Urban Tourism – Academic Conversations track of the European Cities Marketing (ECM) conference on city tourism. Together with Dr. Karl Wöber and Dr. Irem Önder, Bozana has one paper published in Tourism Economics that investigated a sustainable urban tourism development and proposed a partial model of destination competiveness; Bozana also co-authored a book chapter with Dr. Ulrich Gunter on CSR in tourism which was recently accepted. Several of her papers on topics ranging from benchmarking and Airbnb to Facebook are currently under review with journals. Most of her other research output so far was published in the conference proceedings/books of abstracts of IATE and the International Conference on Data Envelopment Analysis. In addition, she has been reviewing manuscripts for a number of conferences (e.g., BEST EN, CPTHL) and journals (e.g., International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Event Management). She would like to become a reviewer for more tourism journals.
What may be interesting to note is that Bozana has strong links to the industry as she worked on several projects, all of which were contracted by the world’s leading tourism organizations: European Cities Marketing (ECM; “The European Cities Marketing Benchmarking Report”), World Tourism Organization (UNWTO; “City Tourism Performance Monitors – Methodology of Data Collection in Cities”), and World Tourism Cities Federation (WTCF; “European Cities Tourism Report”). Furthermore, she is a member of the ECM Knowledge Group Research & Statistics, as well as the lead organizer of the annual ECM and ETC TourMIS workshop and International Seminar that deal with various destination management topics (e.g., residents’ attitudes, consumer trends, sustainability, knowledge sharing, etc.). This event is hosted by MODUL University Vienna and is organized in collaboration with the aforementioned ECM, ETC, and UNWTO. Bozana also helped Dr. Daniel Fesenmaier in organizing the Workshop on Analytics in Tourism Design & JITT Workshop on eTourism, which brought many renowned tourism researchers to MODUL University Vienna in November 2017. So, she evidently likes organizing conferences, too! :-)
In her free time, Bozana enjoys eating out with friends, movies, and traveling – preferably doing the long cliff walks in Ireland and Scotland!
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