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Personal profile


 Dr Simon Thomas FHEA 

Senior Lecturer – Research Methods (P/G & Doctoral) 

Researcher – Pilgrimage, Memorial & Tourism Studies

Programme Director – Doctor of Business Administration

Research Lead – Tourism, Hospitality and Events Research Group

South Wales Business School


Dr. Simon Thomas is a Senior Lecturer at the South Wales Business School.  Prior to commencing a career in academia Dr. Thomas worked in Visitor Services Support for Cadw, the Welsh Government body responsible for the historic environment in Wales. Research centers around the two areas of Pilgrimage Touristic Studies and Memorials as Pilgrimage Shrines.  Dr. Thomas has recently published two important articles relating to pilgrimage and memorial studies; 

Article 1 explores the ‘potential for pilgrimage-touristic growth in Wales’ published by Palgrave Macmillan in the textbook 'Heritage and Tourism in Britain and Ireland: Nation, Conservation, Identity’

Article 2 considers the ‘post-postmodern act of pilgrimage at Lourdes in France’ published in the ABS four star Tourism Management Journal. 

Recent consultancy projects include a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) supervision at the ‘Cardiff Story Museum’ rated as excellent by the KTP board, a Colegau Cymru skills analysis project in the retail, tourism and hospitality sector, and two Strategic Insight Projects in the tourism sector.  Dr. Thomas is an experienced journal reviewer and external examiner who has significant experience in quality and franchise arrangements. Dr. Thomas has examined, chaired and supervised Doctoral candidates in a variety of business-related subjects. 




2007 – 2013

PhD Pilgrimage Tourism (University of South Wales)


Master of Arts in Heritage Tourism (University of Wales, Trinity College Carmarthen)


Post Graduate Certificate in Education - Tourism (University of Wales Newport)


BA (Hons) Tourism (and Leisure) Management (University of Glamorgan)




Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) 




External Examiner MSc International Hospitality and Tourism Management – Coventry University London 2019 – 2023 


External Examiner BA (Hons) Management of Travel and Tourism – Coleg Llandrillo (Bangor University) 2018 – 2022


External Examiner BA (Hons) Heritage Studies – Bishop Grossteste University College Lincoln 2012 – 2017




Faculty Research Ethics Committee Member 


Faculty Research and Programmes Committee Member 






The Dilemma of Pilgrimage. From the Sacred to the Memorial  

Paper 1 – Roadside Memorials as Pilgrimage.

Paper 2 – The Stairway to Heaven. Tracing the Steps of Memory and Pilgrimage.


Dr Simon Thomas




Lloyd-Parkes, E., Deacon, J., Grant, A. & Thomas, S. (2021) Emotional Overload! A Dialogic Autoethnography of Scholar-Participant-Consumer Reactions to the Marketing of Thanatourism in The Qualitative Report Volume 26, Issue 3

DOI: 10.46743/2160-3715/2021.4733


Thomas, B.. Powell, L., & Thomas, S. (2020) An Investigation into Cultural Events and Tourism on the Isle of Man in Land Science, Vol. 2, No. 2, 2020 DOI: https://doi.org/10.30560/ls.v2n2p34


Thomas, S. & Powell, L. (2018) Key factors in the development of tourism-led local innovative heritage entrepreneurship in the South Wales Valleys in ‘Innovation and Social Capital in Organizational Ecosystems’ IGI Global Publications (Edited by Thomas, B & Murphy, L) DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7721-8


Thomas, S., White, G. R. T. & Samuel, A. (2018) To Pray and To Play: post-postmodern pilgrimage at Lourdes, Journal of Tourism Management 68 (2018) 412-422 doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2018.03.021


White, G. R. T., Samuel, A., Zhou, P., Razak, A. A. & Thomas, S. (2017) Religious Heterogeneity of Food Consumers: the impact of global markets upon methods of production, Journal of Consumer Behaviour 2017; 1–10 DOI: 10.1002/cb.1658


Thomas, S. (2017) Chapter 2: Promoting the sacred: The Potential for Pilgrimage-Touristic Growth in Wales – A Theoretical and Applied Analysis in 'Heritage and Tourism in Britain and Ireland: Nation, Conservation, Identity' Palgrave Macmillan London (Edited by Hooper, G) DOI: 10.1057/978-1-137-52083-8


Thomas, B. & Thomas, S. & Powell, L. (2017) The Development of Key Characteristics of Welsh Island Cultural Identity and Sustainable Tourism in Wales in International Journal of Scientific Culture Jan 2017, Vol. 3, No.1 DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.192842


Colegau Cymru Research Project (2016) Survey of Skills and Qualifications in Wales: Retail, Tourism and HospitalityDavid Pickernell, Mark Lang, Malcolm Beynon, Celia Netana, Paul Jones, Rachel Bowen, Simon Thomas, Jonathan Deacon


Thomas, B., Powell, L. & Thomas, S. (2013) Heritage Tourism Entrepreneurship Development in An Independent Wales in International Centre for Business Research Vol 2 – Feb 2013


Thomas, B., & Thomas, S. (2012) Cultural Events and Tourism in the Channel Island of Jersey in the International Journal of Research into Island Cultures Vol 6, No 1, pp 55-73


Thomas, S., Thomas, B. & Powell, L. (2011) Chapter 6: Museums and Small Memory Institutions – Multimedia Knowledge Management Systems in ‘Innovation and Small Business Volume 2’ (Edited by Thomas, B. & Miller, C. & Murphy, L.)


Powell, L., Thomas, S. & Thomas, B. (2011) Innovation and heritage entrepreneurship development in the South Wales Valleys in Annals of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Vol 2, No 1


Powell, L., Thomas, S. & Thomas, B. (2010) Regeneration Schemes in South Wales: A Stimulus for Innovative Heritage Enterprise Development in International Business Management 4 (3): 177-188, 2010 ISSN 1993-5250 Medwell Journals. 


Thomas, S., Miller, C., Thomas, B., Tunstall, R. & Siggins, N. (2007) Mastering intrapreneurial behaviour for sustained socioeconomic development: a public service analysis of the south-east Wales heritage tourism attractions sector in The International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Special Edition 8 (1), pp 75-83 doi.org/10.5367/000000007780007371


Thomas, S. & Thomas, B. (2005) The south Wales heritage tourism industry and small industrial museums in The International Journal of Applied Entrepreneurship 1 (3), pp 1-9 


Thomas, S. & Thomas B. (2004) New heritage tourism business formats for small museums and other sites in Wales in The International Journal of Applied Entrepreneurship 1 (1), pp 64-76


Thomas, S. & Thomas, B. (2003) A national policy analysis of new heritage tourism business formats and the virtual interface for small museums and other sites in Wales. Welsh Enterprise Institute Working Paper Series No 36. 


Thomas, S., Miller, C., Packham, G. & Thomas, B. (2003) The Welsh heritage tourism industry and entrepreneurship. Welsh Enterprise Institute Working Paper Series No 35


PhD/DBA/MPhil supervision 




Dr Julian Zarb (PhD by portfolio)

The Process of Research in Developing an Effective Local Tourism Planning Strategy and Policy – A Community-Based Tourism Model from Malta - Supervisor (with Professor Jonathan Deacon and Professor Andrew Jones)


Dr Christopher House (PhD by publication) 

An evaluation of coastal management and policy implementation: A case study approach – DoS (with Prof. Allan Williams)


Dr Gary Fuller (DBA)

Critical Evaluation of Individual's Perception of Team-working at a Highly Technical Aircraft Engine Overhaul Provider – Supervisor (with Prof. Hefin Rowlands)


Dr Tim Scheuerer (DBA)

Business Modelling based on the future need for funding in the German Mid Cap Market – DoS (with Prof. Thomas Peisl) 


Dr Joe Cudd (DBA)

An evaluation of the significance of Academic Optimism of a sample of Primary schools: A case study approach based in west Wales – Supervisor (with Dr. Catherine Farrell)


Dr Claire Clement (DBA) 

Technological coalescence, recombinant innovation and future work; Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the workforce - Supervisor (with Dr. Gareth White)


Gbolahan Faleye (MPhil)

How Networks and Interaction Drive the Co-creation of Value within the Museums Context – Supervisor (with Prof. Anne Marie Doherty) 




1. Azley Abd Razak (PhD by publication) 

The Triple Helix model of innovation - Supervisor (with Dr. Gareth White)


2. Christoph Stiel (PhD) 

Network of Corporate Innovation Labs - DoS (with Professor Hefin Rowlands & Professor Tom Peisl)


3. Adeyemi Aromolaran (PhD) 

User Experience and Online Conversion for NGOs - Supervisor (with Dr. Gabor Horvath)


4. Robert Baustel (DBA) 

An inquiry into corporate behaviour of a German MedTech SME focusing on disruptive innovation - DoS (with Professor Dominik Hammer)  


5. Chris Jenkins (DBA) 

Strategic directions for the Commonwealth Games Movement within a professional multi-sport environment - DoS (with Dr. Elizabeth Lloyd Parkes)


6. Shelley Poole (DBA) 

Hearing the Employee Voice: Identifying Opportunities for Reciprocal Learning between Employee Owned Organisations and the Industrial Relations School of Human Resources Management - DoS (with Dr. Hazel Mawdsley)


7. Ewan Savage (DBA) 

Medical Device Regulation 2017/745: Impact, evaluation and practices for change execution - Supervisor (with Dr. Andre Clark)


8. Laura Castles (DBA) 

Public sector motivational practices and their effect on job satisfaction and productivity within Torfaen Training a profit arm of Torfaen County Borough Council in particular the introduction of wellbeing policies - DoS (with Dr. Lauren Thomas)  


9. Kerry Collier (DBA) 

An experiential qualitative study analysing the value of Family Crosspoint from a professional perspective - DoS (with Dr. Jane Prince & Dr. Elizabeth Lloyd Parkes)


10. Balvinder Singh (DBA) 

Chemical Legislation (REACH) Business Impact Analysis on UK Aerospace Industry and Brexit - DoS (with Dr. Andre Clark)


11. Cael Sendell-Price (DBA) 

Caveat Emptor: Developing and maintaining true value in a local government procurement service - Supervisor (with Dr. Ruth Gaffney Rhys & Mr. Stuart Milligan)


12. Bede Chukwuekezie (DBA) Data asymmetry, manipulation and contestation in managing knowledge workers - DoS (with Dr. Gabor Horvath & Mr. Stuart Milligan)


DBA Mentor 

Sian Lyons-Nicholas 

Zoe Grainger 

Emilia Piera Adamczyk


PhD/DBA/MPhil examination 


Nadine Khair (PhD) July 2019 - Exploring the meanings Jordanian consumers allocate to foreign brands: an ethnography on understanding the effect of brand country of origin image on consumption - USW


Maxine Johnson (MPhil transfer) November 2019 - An investigation of marketing strategy in social enterprises – USW 


Daniel Griffiths (MPhil Transfer) February 2020 - How do emotions impact the consumer decision-making process? – USW


Tina Thomas (MPhil Transfer) January 2021 - Parental social identity and the child’s sports-related consumer behaviour: a qualitative study – USW


Bosun Sanusi (PhD) February 2021 - Slum an Urban Tourism Resource in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Case Study of Kalingalinga Informal Settlement – Swansea University


T – 07854 164923

E – simon.thomas@southwales.ac.uk – work 

E – st16924@gmail.com – personal 





Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land

Education/Academic qualification

PhD Pilgrimage Tourism (University of South Wales)

Award Date: 1 Dec 2013

Master of Arts in Heritage Tourism (University of Wales, Trinity College Carmarthen), Trinity College

Award Date: 1 Jul 2005

Post Graduate Certificate in Education – Tourism (University of Wales Newport)

Award Date: 1 Jul 2003

Tourism and Leisure Management, BA (Hons) Tourism (and Leisure) Management (University of Glamorgan)

Award Date: 1 Jul 2001

External positions

External Examiner MSc International Hospitality and Tourism Management – Coventry University London


External Examiner BA (Hons) Management of Travel and Tourism – Coleg Llandrillo (Bangor University)


External Examiner BA (Hons) Heritage Studies – Bishop Grossteste University College Lincoln



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