Dr Sumeetra Ramakrishnan (née Thozhur)

Associate Professor
+44 (0)1483 686336
15 AP 02


Areas of specialism

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Research; Inclusive Education in Hospitality, Travel and Tourism; HRM & OB in Hospitality and Tourism

University roles and responsibilities

  • Programme Director- MSc Programmes in International Hotel Management, Strategic Hospitality Management and International Hospitality Management with Digital Innovation
  • SHTM link for Institute of Travel & Tourism, and Women in Travel
  • FASS EDI Lead
  • SHTM Mentoring Circles Lead
  • University of Surrey’s Race Equality (RE) Steering Committee Member
  • Working Group Member of the University of Surrey’s Inclusive Education Strategy


Research interests

Migrant worker rights, opportunity perceptions, and barriers to progression in Major Sports Events (MSEs)- a case study of the HSBC BWF World Tour, Japan Open Badminton Tournament

Awarded an EventRights project through EU RISE Funding to explore the challenges faced by ethnically diverse migrant workers working in mega sporting events in Japan. The project explores the role of education of migrant workers towards exercising their employment rights, their perceived employment opportunities and facilitators to progression.

Start date: May 2022

End date: July 2022

Research projects

Indicators of esteem

  • Invited to judge the annual Women in Travel IWTTF Awards 2023

  • Invited Speaker to the ITT Annual Conference, June 2023, Doha, Qatar, to explore Inclusive Education in Travel and Tourism. 

  • Invited to speak at the annual EdukCircle convention, Manilla on 11th March 2023 as an expert speaker on Employment and Opportunity Perceptions of Hospitality and Tourism Students

  • Invited speaker at the World Travel Market 2022, as part of ongoing research with Women in Travel and Travel Foundation to discuss Co-creating equitable, diverse, and inclusive travel and tourism, November 9th, ExCel London

  • Invited speaker to the Annual International Women in Travel and Tourism Forum 2022, to discuss EDI in Travel and Tourism, ‘Turning point or boiling point?’ June 30, Google headquarters in London

  • Expert contributor to a white paper on “Improving Inclusion in the Workspace”, for Women in Mobility UK, 2022. Women in Mobility supports the progression of women in transport related employment in the U.K. and Germany


  • Invited to a United Nations Faiths for Right Consultation by Oxford University involving a series of workshops with senior interfaith leaders between September and November 2022, at Lambeth Palace and St George’s House, Windsor Castle. The consultation examined areas where faith and human rights work together in the arena of faith, human rights and our planet looking at this through the lens of both the Faith for Rights toolkit and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 


Postgraduate research supervision



() Kim, B., Kim, Y., Kimbu, A., Ramakrishnan, S. and Smith, W (2023). ‘Co-creating Equitable, Diverse and Inclusive Travel and Toursim’. ESRC IAA Project: EDI Workshop Report. Open Access doi: https://openresearch.surrey.ac.uk/esploro/outputs/report/99714766602346
() Ramakrishnan, S. (2022). ‘Challenging gender norms through diverse guest speakers in Hospitality and Tourism education’, in Kitchener, M. (ed.) Handbook for Creating a Gender-Sensitive Curriculum: Teaching and Learning Strategies [Online]. Available from: https://www.brookes.ac.uk/ocsld/publications/.
() Wejdan, A.L.K., Jin, Z., Priporas, C.V. and Ramakrishnan, S. (2022). ‘Defining family business efficacy: An exploratory study’. Journal of Business Research, 141, pp 713-725. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.11.081.
() Ramakrishnan, S (2022) Developing an Inclusive and Competitive Workforce, WeTravel Academy, https://academy.wetravel.com/developing-inclusive-competitive-workforce/
() Kimbu, A.N., Ramakrishnan, S., Kim, Y.R. and Saha, P. (2021). ‘Engaging New Travel Audiences: Understanding the UK BAME Travellers’ Decision-Making Process’. Industry report in collaboration with Women in Travel CIC available at https://www.womenintravelcic.com/product/engaging-new-travel-audiences-understanding-the-uk-bame-travellers-decision-making-process/
() Ramakrishnan, S and Macaveiu, C (2019) Understanding aspirations in tourism students Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management Volume 39, June 2019, Pages 40-48 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhtm.2019.02.003
() Croucher, R., Ramakrishnan, S., Rizov, M. and Benzinger, D. (2018). ‘Perceptions of employability among London’s low-paid: ‘self-determination’ or ethnicity?’. Economic and Industrial Democracy, 39(1), pp 109-130. doi: https://doi.org/10.1177/0143831X15609672
() Josiam, B.M., Reynolds, J.S., Thozhur, S., Crustinger, C., Dotter, Thao-Vi., Baum, T and Devine, F.G (2009) An Empirical Study of work Attitudes of Generation Y College Students in the USA: The Case of Hospitality and Merchandising Undergraduate Majors. Journal of Services Research. Volume 9, number 1, pp 5-30
() Lockwood A., Alsini I, Al-Sabbahy H and Thozhur, S (2008) 'Expatriate hospitality workers in the Arab Gulf countries'. Hospitality Review. Volume 10, issue 1, pp 27-34
() Josiam, B.M., Reynolds, J.S., Thozhur, S., Crustinger, C., Baum, T and Devine, F.G (2008) Attitudes To Work Of Generation Y Students In Hospitality Management: A Comparative Analysis Of Students In USA & UK. Journal of Foodservice Business Research. Volume 11, issue 3, pp 295- 314
() DiPietro, R.B., Thozhur, S and Milman, A (2007) Hourly Employee Retention Factors in the United Kingdom Quick Service Restaurant Industry. Journal of Foodservice Business Research. Volume 10, number 4, pp 39- 61
() Thozhur, S., Riley, M and Szivas, E (2007) Do the poor wake up quickly. Service Industries Journal. Volume 27, number 2, pp 139-150
() Thozhur, S., Riley, M and Szivas, E (2006) Money Attitudes and Pay Satisfaction for the Low Paid. Journal of Managerial Psychology. Volume 21, issue 2, pp 163- 172
() ‘Pay Satisfaction in the Hospitality and Tourism Industry: Theories, Realities and the Possibilities’ in Promises and Perils in Hospitality and Tourism Management, Dixit, S (ed) (2006) Aman Publications, New Delhi