Hospitality is about feeling welcome and free to be yourself. Creating a sense of hospitality means people stay longer, feel part of a community, and share their positive experiences and cultures with others. Visitors and residents increasingly want meaningful experiences and connections, even when they are only visiting for a short period of time. Creating hospitable environments is important for businesses, for local government, for hospitals and care homes and for those delivering hospitality services – our professorship is interested in discovering hospitable moments in unusual places and times as well as where we might expect to find them.

Education and industry

In our research we focus on real-life situations in our industry as well as developing and testing theory. We collaborate with other hospitality research centres in The Hague, Breda and Enschede and conduct research with colleagues and students (undergraduate and postgraduate) for small local and large international hospitality organisations. We also support students and staff in developing their skills in research methods across qualitative and qualitative methodologies including new approaches such as netnography.

Hospitable hospitals

Dr. Erwin Losekoot is working on a number of projects around the nature of hospitality, hospitableness and hostmanship. His PhD investigated hospitality in airports and this encouraged him to research hospitality in other non-hospitality settings. He is part of a research group involving all five of the Dutch Hotel Schools, the 'Hospitality & Healthcare Education Partnership'. In that we bring together hospitality and medical students and practitioners to investigate how hospitals can become more hospitable places as well as being providers of safe and high quality medical care.

Cultural awareness

Research Group member Dr. Anne Keizer has studied cultural awareness and cosmopolitanism and is now leading a study into 'handelsverlegenheid' or 'awkwardness to act', where the lack of cultural awareness may inhibit our ability to be hospitable to others.


Georges El Hajal is starting his doctoral research looking at future-proof jobs and the gig-economy, and what the hospitality industry can do to attract and retain talent better than it currently does, particularly in a post-Covid era.

Impact of DBE in hospitality

Associate Professor Dr Hanneke Assen is working with Dr Marte Rinck de Boer and Macmillion Fernandes investigating the impact of Design-Based Education on the ability of our graduates to be future-proof game changers in the hospitality industry.


Sake Jan Velthuis is an expert in neuromarketing and is interested in the psychological construct of feeling welcome, how best to measure that, and the fascinating phenomenon that customers seem to be willing to 'suspend disbelief' and forget that they are paying for a service when they receive what they perceive to be 'genuine hospitality' in a commercial setting.


NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences
Stenden Hotel Management School
Postbus 1298

Rengerslaan 8-10
NL-8900 CG Leeuwarden, the Netherlands

Administrative Assistant: Ms Regina van der Meer
T: +31 (0)6 15319709

Office Manager ESR/Academisation Office: Ms Sonja Schuil
T: +31 (0)6 19281329


See also

Sustainability in Hospitality and Tourism

Innovation in Hospitality