Media Release: Hospitality and tourism sector takes the lead

SENIOR figures from the international hospitality and tourism sector have formed an innovative partnership with the world of academia to help develop the next generation of leaders for their global industry.

The International Leadership School in Scotland (ILSS), will be chaired by Peter Lederer CBE, chair of Gleneagles Hotel plc.

David Cochrane, chief executive of the Hospitality Industry Trust in Scotland (HITs), will take on the additional role of chief executive of the new body. Its aim is to tackle the acknowledged deficit of emerging leaders in the global hospitality and tourism industry.

This unique partnership, led by the industry, will join forces with three leading international academic institutions; Strathclyde Business School in Glasgow, whose 60 years of experience in the hospitality and tourism sector will drive the delivery of an innovative two-year Executive Masters in Hospitality and Tourism Leadership alongside Cornell University in New York and École hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland.

ILLS will also offer a series of executive education modules for senior management.

Together, the combined institutions have more than 250 years of collective experience in delivering strategic executive education to the international hospitality and tourism industries.

An international advisory council, comprising a number of the current sector leaders, including Sir David Michels, chair of the British Hospitality Association, alongside other senior industry figures from some of the world’s largest and leading hotel groups, will offer guidance and ambassadorial support to the ILSS management board.

The advisory council will be chaired by Dr Brian Lang, Principal Emeritus of the University of St Andrews. Brian has been responsible for the co ordination of the academic content of the school alongside the deans of the three academic institutions.

Peter Lederer CBE, chair of ILSS, said: “The hospitality and tourism sector is a key contributor to the global economy – worth in excess of $1.8 trillion annually.

“To ensure that the industry grows and fulfils its potential there is an urgent need to provide the best and most appropriate training at the highest levels for what is now a very complex and high tech business.

“This initiative is not just about the UK as it seeks to tackle the wider market bearing in mind the international nature of modern tourism and hospitality. We need more than just good management in our sector we need first class leadership too.”

The Executive Masters will focus on developing senior leaders able to outperform in an international and increasingly digitally-led industry.

Strathclyde Business School will work with Cornell and Lausanne to deliver the programme which is scheduled to start in January 2012.

Professor Susan Hart, Dean of Strathclyde Business School, said: “The formation of this partnership presents the perfect opportunity for Scotland and the UK to lead the way in the sector globally.

“It is a ground breaking approach bringing together the industry and three leading academic institutions all of whom have the expertise and resources to make a major impact on the hospitality and tourism sector.”

It is expected that 25 participants will form the first cohort for the Executive Masters course.

Initial start-up funding was provided by the Scottish Funding Council along with support from Scottish Enterprise.  

Notes to editors:   

  • Executive Masters in Hospitality and Tourism Leadership Aimed at senior level managers already working in the hospitality and tourism sector, or senior managers from a service industry background looking to move into this rapidly expanding market-place, the Executive Masters in Hospitality and Tourism Leadership will ensure that participants study alongside equally impressive colleagues when they attend modules in Glasgow, Lausanne and New York. This powerful networking opportunity is indicative of the programme’s collaborative learning approach, where participants share work experience, knowledge, understanding and skills with each other, as well as the latest management thinking from the programme’s faculty team.
  • Over the course of two years, participants will undertake a total of twelve intensive modules, studying with like-minded executives in the UK , the United States and Switzerland. The first six modules are delivered at the Strathclyde Business School’s city centre campus in the heart of Glasgow, Scotland. The subsequent six modules are delivered at the Strathclyde Business School and on the campuses of Cornell University,in Ithaca, New York, and Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) in Switzerland.
  • Strathclyde Business School has 170+ academic staff, over 4,500 full- and part-time, graduate and undergraduate students, and an annual turnover of over £23 million. The Strathclyde Business School is one of the top one per cent of business schools in the world which are triple accredited by the top accrediting bodies overseeing quality assurance and standards for business schools across the globe. SBS has earned a reputation for innovation in business and management education and pioneered among other initiatives, the first one year MBA programme, back in 1966.
  • Founded in 1922, Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration was the first collegiate program in hospitality management. Today it is regarded as the world leader in its field. The school’s highly talented and motivated students learn from 60 full-time faculty members – all experts in their chosen disciplines, and all dedicated to teaching, research and service. Learning takes place in state-of-the-art classrooms, in the on-campus Statler hotel, and in varied industry settings around the world. The result: a supremely accomplished alumni group-corporate executives and entrepreneurs who advance the industry and share their wisdom and experience with our students and faculty. It offers undergraduate, Masters, PhD and executive education programmes on campuses in Ithaca, New York and Singapore.
  • École hôtelière de Lausanne is an international, bilingual school, offering its programmes in both English and French. It provides the solid management education of a top business school while basing its programmes on its own unique educational philosophy: hospitality management as both a science and an art. As the oldest hotel school in the world (1893), Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) offers undergraduate, Masters and executive education studies to students, aiming for top careers in the hospitality industry. In Switzerland EHL is the only institute of hospitality management of HES (‘Haute Ecole Spècialisèe’ or University of Applied Sciences) level offering advanced programmes which are recognized by the Swiss government. EHL is also accredited as an Institution of Higher Education by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), USA.
  • Hospitality Industry Trust Scotland (HIT Scotland) is a registered Trust that represents the whole of the hospitality and tourism sector in Scotland. The Trust was established in August 1994 by key leaders within the hospitality industry with the sole aim of raising money in Scotland to fulfil the Mission of “Assisting people to achieve their potential within Scottish hospitality”.  It now has extensive support from all sectors of the industry and over the years has raised an outstanding amount of over £2,200,000, which has helped fund a student bursary programme for 27 Scottish educational establishments. This has also provided of 850 emerging talent scholarships – locally, nationally and internationally.

MEDIA RELEASE posted by The BIG Partnership. You too can post media releases (aka press releases) on For more information, email here.

Contact: Jen Hood
Phone: 0141 333 9585