Author
Author

Gabriel C. M. Laeis

Lecturer at IUBH International University

Gabriel C. M. Laeis

Gabriel C. M. Laeis is a published author on issues of sustainable tourism and has worked for a number of international hotel companies as well as a hotel management consultancy. He graduated from the IUBH School of Business and Management and the Victoria University, Melbourne, with a double degree in Hospitality Management. With a keen interest in social and environmental issues, he went on to do a M.Sc. in Organic Agriculture and Food Systems at the University of Hohenheim and is currently working toward his Ph.D. in Development Studies at Massey University, New Zealand. His research focusses on the interface between developing countries, food chains and the hospitality sector. He has recently undertaken research on the impact of culture on local food chains in Fiji.

Insights by Gabriel C. M. Laeis (7)

COVID-19: A stress test for sustainable development in hospitality?

While people are still struggling to survive, some theorists say, they do not think of the common good. Yet what this crisis has shown (for some surprisingly for some not), is that this is not by definition true.

What is your take on the coronavirus and its impact on our industry?

We have experienced a variety of natural disasters and multiple contagions in the past and each time we rebound to previous levels of social and business behaviors — the question is though — how long will it take for a complete recovery?At the time of writing, it appears as though the rate of growth of this virus has slowed down for the first time in China, where it is believed the virus originated.

How can sustainability be communicated beyond clichés and greenwashing?

To avoid falling into the „greenwashing trap” business need to be transparent, honest and modest. Since “greening” is not the core business of most tour-operators, hotels or resorts, investing in the wrong project or a poor strategy might turn into a slippery slope to reputation damage.

Hotel Sustainability: Top 3 Technologies to Implement in 2020

I believe solar PV systems should be a high priority, to relieve dependence on fossil fuels while reducing Opex. I'll go with waste heat recovery, IE using a heat exchanger to preheat water entering hot water tanks, by using the exhaust heat from either HVAC or diesel generators, etc.

Who makes hospitality sustainability happen: Governments, Industry, Consumers?

Findings from research that we conducted in the Netherlands suggest that guests are increasing willing to support or even push for sustainability. However, they also argue that hosts should take responsibility first.
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