• United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

1998 …2024
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Personal profile

Personal Statement

My academic interests address the social and strategic contexts of low skills employment, with particular focus on hospitality and tourism. This interest stems from over 30 years of experience in the strategic planning and development of vocational and professional education and training, as a research director within the public sector, as an educator in universities and as consultant to the private sector and to public sector, internationally funded projects across five continents. A key focus of my work addresses the role of public and private stakeholders in planning and HRD for the diverse employment environment of hospitality and tourism. Much of my strategic development work in this area has been located in developing country contexts in Asia and Africa. I also collaborate in research which addresses related areas of employment including migrant work and episodic, events volunteering.

I am currently a CI on two major international research projects. The first is the the One Ocean Hub (www.strath.ac.uk/research/strathclydecentreenvironmentallawgovernance/oneoceanhub/) which is a transdisciplinary study of the natural and human ecology of the ocean, focusing on improiving the lives of communities in the Global South. The second is a Horizon2020 project focuses on new urban management models and mobilities in Europe and partnering 11 major universities.

From 2014 until July 2019, I was the Head of Department in the Department of Work, Employment and Organisation and have previously spent 7 years heading up the former Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management and The Scottish Hotel School. I led the development of overseas partnership programmes in Hong Kong and Iran.  I have published extensively on themes relating to people and work within hospitality and tourism and am regularly invited to address international conferences worldwide. I have also supervised over 30 successful PhD students working in this and related areas of HRD in tourism and hospitality and have been an examiner for over 75 candidates. I hold or have held visiting appointments to universities in Australia, Estonia, Finland, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Spain and Switzerland and have been a panel member for institutional and programme reviews in 12 countries.

Research Interests

My research focuses on a range of workforce themes and issues in the context of low skills employment. My work places such work in its wider socio-cultural, economic and political contexts. I currently collaborate with colleagues in Australia, China, Hong Kong and New Zealand on projects relating to the first job experiences of teenagers; the future of tourism/ hospitality skills and work; the influence of culture on aspects of management theory; migrant labour in low skills work; gendered work in tourism; and volunteer work in tourism and events.

Expertise & Capabilities

  • Strategic HRD planning in the public and corporate sectors
  • Skills assessments in tourism
  • Education and training for low skills work
  • Volunteer work and volunteer roles in events and tourism
  • Cultural influences on work and workplace behaviour

Industrial Relevance

My work has a strong application focus. Having worked in the management of labour market and skills research in tourism and hospitality at a national level (in Ireland), I have been able to fuse this experience with academic skills to develop expertise which is widely recognised internationally within by governments, the private sector and by global organisations. I recently completed a series of three position papers on tourism workplace themes for the International Labour Organisation, focused on the impact of technology, migrant work and gender opportunities. I have applied these core skills, professionally, in over 40 countries and my work has been supported by a wide range of international agencies, including UNDP, the ADB, the EU, the World Bank and a range of other NGOs and national donor agencies. 

Teaching Interests

  • International HRM
  • Labour mobility and migration
  • Workforce diversity

Academic / Professional qualifications

I hold BA(Hons) and MA degrees in Education from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, an MPhil in Training and Development obtained while working with Nottingham Trent University and a PhD in Tourism Labour Market Studies from the University of Strathclyde. I have recently completed my DLitt degree from the University of Strathclyde, based on my published work in the field of tourism and employment over a 30 year period.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Strathclyde

Master of Philosophy, Nottingham Trent University

Master of Arts, Aberystwyth University

Bachelor of Arts, Aberystwyth University


  • low skills work; employment; tourism; hospitality; labour market planning; education; training

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Thomas Baum is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Projects 2007 2024

Research Output 1998 2019

1 Citation (Scopus)
working-day world
tertiary sector
service work

Applying endosymbiosis theory: tourism and its young workers

Robinson, R. N. S., Baum, T., Golubvskaya, M., Solnet, D. J. & Callan, V., 30 Sep 2019, In : Annals of Tourism Research. 78, 12 p., 102751.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

young worker
employment relationship


Engagement climate in service settings

Author: Sarrion, M., 1 Jul 2013

Supervisor: Baum, T. (Supervisor) & Scholarios, D. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Organisational citizenship behaviour : exploring enablers within organisational culture from an employment perspective

Author: Wang, T., 1 Oct 2009

Supervisor: Baum, T. (Supervisor) & Scholarios, D. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Activities 2004 2018

External Examiner

Thomas Baum (Examiner)
6 Dec 2018

Activity: Examination typesExamination

External Examiner

Thomas Baum (Examiner)
20 Nov 2018

Activity: Examination typesExamination


Judge for World Travel and Tourism Council's Annual INVESTORS IN PEOPLE Award

Thomas Baum (Participant)

Impact: Impact - for External PortalEconomic and commerce