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Sexual harassment: overlooked and under-researched

Yael Ram (Department of Tourism, Ashkelon Academic College, Ashkelon, Israel)
John Tribe (Department of Tourism, University of Surrey, Guildford, UK)
Avital Biran (Department of Tourism, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, UK)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Article publication date: 10 October 2016

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on the gap between the very high prevalence of sexual harassment in the tourism and hospitality industry (the phenomenon) and the limited academic discussion about it (academic knowledge), and suggests ways to bridge this gap.

Design/methodology/approach

The gap between phenomenon and knowledge is identified by comparing official data regarding sexual harassment in the tourism and hospitality industry with a content analysis of the academic literature. Tribe’s (2006) knowledge force-field model is used to analyze this gap.

Findings

The five truth barriers identified by Tribe (2006), namely, person, rules, position, ends and ideology, are confirmed by the data. Five counter-forces – triangulation, interdisciplinary, collaboration, humanism and critical praxis – are developed to counter these truth barriers.

Practical implications

The five counter-forces offer practical solutions for research, higher education programs and the tourism industry. They demonstrate ways to reduce the high prevalence of sexual harassment in the industry and improve the working conditions of employees.

Originality/value

Underpinned by Tribe’s conceptual model, the paper identifies and analyzes a relative silence regarding sexual harassment in the tourism and hospitality academy in contrast to its prevalence in the industry. Additionally, it advances Tribe’s model by identifying five truth-facilitating forces. Further, it offers a research agenda for revealing hidden topics and/or biased knowledge by understanding the relationship between tourism and hospitality phenomena and academic knowledge.

Keywords

Citation

Ram, Y., Tribe, J. and Biran, A. (2016), "Sexual harassment: overlooked and under-researched", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 28 No. 10, pp. 2110-2131. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-05-2015-0240

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited