Professor Vikneswaran Nair: Taylor’s University – School of Hospitality, Tourism & Culinary Arts
A full bred of Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Dr. Vikneswaran Nair, better known as Prof. Vicky Nair or Vic Nair, completed his Bachelor of Science in Horticulture in 1994. After 2 years in the plantations, he was offered to do his Masters in Systems Engineering (Environmental Systems), an IRPA (Intensified Research in Priority Area), Ministry of Science & Environment Malaysia, funded project in developing an expert system for terrestrial vegetation management for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) in 1998. Five years later, he completed his Ph.D. in Systems Engineering (Ecotourism Systems) with his research on developing an expert system for ecotourism accreditation and rating for Peninsular Malaysia based on safety, health and environmental assurance.
At present, he is a Professor at the School of Hospitality, Tourism & Culinary Arts, Programme Leader for the Responsible Rural Tourism Network and Associate Research Fellow of the Centre for Research & Innovation in Tourism (CRiT). He was also the founding Director of the Centre for Research and Development of the Taylor’s University in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.
Prof. Vic Nair’s research specialisation is on Sustainable and Responsible Tourism, Ecotourism Management, Environmental Management, Community-based Tourism and Poverty Alleviation via Tourism. He has conducted many guest lectures for public universities in Malaysia, namely Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM). In addition he has also conducted lectures for the graduate programme at the University of Toulouse, France, Rikkyo University, Japan, Institute for Tourism Studies (IFT), Macau and De Lin Institute of Technology, Taiwan.
With more than 200 publications (books, book chapters, journal articles, conference proceedings, trade magazines, etc.) to his credit, he was also given the privilege of writing a monthly column on hospitality and tourism issues in Business Today, a leading business magazine in Malaysia and IMPAK, the official bulletin of the Department of Environment, Malaysia. He is also one of the reviewers and editors for the Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research, USA, Journal of Tourism Geography, New Zealand, Asia Pacific Journal of Tourism, Hong Kong, Tourism Review, France. He is currently the editor-in-chief of TEAM Journal of Hospitality & Tourism, Malaysia.
A certified Licensed Environmental Auditor (Environmental Management System), Dr. Vic Nair, is currently the Malaysian representative in the International Ecotourism Club in Greece (ecoclub.com), Vice President of the Malaysia Ecotourism Association (MEA), past President of the Asia-Pacific Council for Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education (APacCHRIE) and the past Secretary of the Tourism Educators Association of Malaysia (TEAM).
In 2002, Prof. Vic Nair won the Taylor’s Chairman’s Staff Excellence Award for Academic Excellence followed by Research Excellence award in 2007. In 2004, he won the Best Paper Award for Tourism Research in the Third National Tourism Educators Conference for his work in ecotourism. In 2006 and 2009, he was accorded the Merit and Honorary Award respectively for Academic Leadership and Accomplishment as the Outstanding Young Malaysian of the Year organised by Junior Chambers International, for his contribution to the ecotourism industry of Malaysia. In 2008, again he won the Best Paper Award for Tourism Research in the 2nd Asia-Euro Tourism, Hospitality & Gastronomy Conference 2008 and the Best Paper Award for his work on education tourism for real estate development in the 20th National Real Estate Convention 2009. In 2011, he added another feather in his cap when he was awarded a national research grant worth RM9million for a 5-year project (2011-2016) on rura l responsible tourism under the Ministry of Education’s Long Term Research Grant Scheme (LRGS).
As an expert in the filed of sustainable and responsible tourism, I believe my network can benefit ICTP in making the world a better place using tourism. I can further enhance the “Green Growth” initiatives.
The “Green Growth” initiative is something that is coherent with my philosophies in life. Thus, ICTP’s strategic response to today’s economic, climate and poverty crises in making the industry responsible and sustainable is something I would like to develop further. Shifting to low carbon, resource efficient, socially inclusive, digitally driven and conservation sensitive lifestyles is the way forward and is the approach that I have long been advocating in my region in Southeast Asia.