CfP Special Issue on “Smart Tourism: Convergence of Information Technologies, Experiences and Theories”

CfP Special Issue on “Smart Tourism: Convergence of Information Technologies, Experiences and Theories”

JOURNAL: Electronic Markets
Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

Guest Editors

  • Ulrike Gretzel, Associate Professor of e Institute for Innovation in Business and Social Research, The University of Wollongong, Australia
  • Marianna Sigala, Assistant Professor of the Department of Business
  • Administration, University of the Aegean, Greece
  • Chulmo Koo, Assistant Professor of College of Hotel and Tourism Management, Kyung Hee University, South Korea
  • Zheng Xiang, Assistant Professor of Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of North Texas, USA


In the 1980s, Computer Reservation Systems (CRS) were used to store and
retrieve information and conduct transactions related to air travel.
Nowadays, the CRS have been fully integrated into consumer websites such as
Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz. Today, these systems allow a user to
instantaneously locate and reserve inventory (airline seat on a particular
route at a particular time) and find applicable fares. Mobile technology and
global roaming services make it possible to increasingly shift such
transactions from pre-trip planning to while on-the-move. Importantly,
although the historic focus of IT in tourism was on distribution and the
facilitation of transactions, IT has been widely integrated into the fabric
of tourism, being used to support interpretation at sites, the marketing of
destinations, access to ski resorts, management of crowds, the establishment
of connections among travelers, etc.
Technology has also changed the structure of the tourism industry with new
players entering the value chain. For instance, AirBnb (Air Bed and
Breakfast) is a new kind of short-term rental service which has emerged in
the last three years. Its success appeals to a traveler’s desire to see a
city through local eyes which provide detailed descriptions of the private
rooms or apartments available for rent. This site relies on social
networking and involves electronic brokerage. What is unique is that the
renters also give their comments toward their visitors unlike or
other traditional hotel booking services where only feedback on the
accommodation is provided (New York Times, 2010). Recently, mobile apps
connected with social network services as well as with traditional websites
allow such exchanges to be informed by social information and for feedback
to be instantaneous. Twitter, for example, is increasingly used by airlines
and hotels to identify service quality issues and engage in immediate
service recovery.
The growing number of apps available through smart devices provides an
increasing diversity of travel-related services like looking up menus for
restaurants, finding directions, making reservations,  and using
translations.  This not only suggests convergence of technology but also
convergence of touristic activities and a completely different marketplace
where both consumers and businesses and IT providers play important roles.
Thus, the purpose of the Smart Tourism special issue is pursuing innovative
approaches and technology solutions and identifying opportunities related to
newly emerging electronic tourism marketplaces.

Specifically, the special issue will explore:

  • Smart Tourism impacts on tourism experiences and travel consumer-travel business exchanges.
  • IT applications for specific touristic activities such as museums, festivals and events.
  • Changes in the tourism marketplace and implications for management.

Owing to the increasing economic and environmental impact of tourism on societies, more attention should be paid to the role of technology in facilitating and managing tourism. Smart tourism plays a decisive role in enabling tourism, cultural, economic, and societal development and sustainability. For Information Systems (IS) researchers, this special issue offers a chance to address challenges related to making tourism “smart”. For tourism researchers, identifying how IT changes behaviors and experiences is of utmost importance.


The special issue’s particular interest lies on papers that focus on

  1. “Visit” experiences in smart tourism contexts,
  2. IT-enabled tourism business models,
  3. The role of IT in tourism product, devices, and process innovations, and
  4. The extension of our knowledge about the adequacy of research methods and tourism and IS theories for future studies related to smart tourism.

Topics clearly related to smart tourism from an IS perspective are privacy and security issues, interoperability, technology adoption/acceptance, innovation diffusion, design and system integration, reference modeling, IT architectures, business model design, business process modeling, complexity and modularity, electronic marketplace, electronic brokerage, and organizational dynamics. From a social sciences perspective, resulting changes in consumer attitudes and behaviors, interactions among travelers, host communities, and travel businesses, as well as implications for marketing are some of the topics that need to be addressed.

We invite researchers to submit original papers that include empirical, analytical, design-oriented, or conceptual approaches that are relevant for this important topic and provide new insights for theory and practice. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Smart tourism case studies
  • Smart technologies for airlines
  • Smart technologies for hospitality
  • Smart technologies for tour operators, travel agencies
  • Smart technologies for destinations
  • Electronic brokerage and marketplaces for tourists, agencies, and vendors
  • Electronic marketplaces through social network services
  • IT architectures and models for smart tourism like e-tourism or smart services
  • The role of IT in smart tourism business models
  • Developments and barriers regarding interoperability and standards
  • Acceptance, adoption, diffusion, and infusion of smart tourism technologies, products, or devices
  • Ensuring privacy and security in smart tourism infrastructures
  • Smart tourism solution approaches
  • Impact of smart technologies on traditional tourism
  • Policy, strategy, management of smart tourism
  • Smart tourism business processes
  • Value chain analysis in the networked tourism industry
  • Online & Computer Reservation Systems
  • Business intelligence for smart tourism technologies and services
  • Mobile solutions for the tourism industry
  • IS theories for tourism-related issues
  • Research methods for the analysis of smart tourism related phenomena

Methodological and theoretical pluralism is part of the journal’s policy. We welcome submissions using qualitative or quantitative methods. We also would like to encourage submissions of interdisciplinary work by authors from different areas. If authors have any questions regarding the suitability of their work for this special issue, whether topical or methodological, they should not hesitate to contact (one of) the guest editors.


Prospective authors should prepare and submit manuscripts according to the guidelines published at Authors. All manuscripts that meet the scope of this special issue will be peer reviewed and should conform to Electronic Markets’ publication standards. Methodological and theoretical pluralism (empirical or theoretical work, qualitative research, design science, prototypes, etc.) is welcome by the journal. All submissions should be original, not published nor under review elsewhere. If you would like to discuss any aspect of the special theme, please contact the guest editors for the special issue. Submission must be in English and should consist of approximately 5,000 – at least 3,500 and at most of 6,500 – words. Articles must be submitted via the electronic submission system at

Review Process

Papers will be evaluated on their general merit, relevance to industry, and contribution to Smart Tourism. All papers will be rigorously refereed by 2-3 reviewers. Submission of a manuscript to this special issue implies that no similar paper is already accepted or will be submitted to any other conference or journal.

Contact addresses

Ulrike Gretzel, University of Wollongong
Chulmo Koo, Kyung Hee University
Marianna Sigala, University of Aegean
Zheng Xiang, Univeristy of North Texas

or editors(at)

Important deadlines

Submission title and abstract directly sent to the Guest Editors via email (optional): June 30, 2013
Submission Deadline: August 31, 2013

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