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GUST Professor’s Research Published in leading international academic journal

11 January 2021

Kuwait City, January 11, 2021: Prof Omar Moufakkir, Associate Professor, at the Business Administration Department in Gulf University for Science and Technology, has had his paper, titled “Experience of Arab/Muslim Women Visiting Relatives in the West and the Management of Stigma by Association” published in Tourism Management a leading international journal for all those concerned with the management, including planning, of travel and tourism", a A8/Q1-ranked academic journal with an impact factor of 7.432.

In the social sciences, stigma is a well-established concept that recently found resonance in tourist studies.  Additionally, psychologists have used stigma theory to analyze the predicament of disadvantaged groups in society such as the unemployed, ethnic groups, and immigrants. As such, Moufakkir’s paper introduces stigma management in tourism studies and describes a set of stigma management strategies deployed by veiled and non-veiled Arab/Muslim women visiting relatives in Europe and North America where immigration is perceived to be a problem by the indigenous populations. These tourists straddle two stigmas at their destination –immigrant stigma and religious stigma, and their associated stereotypes. Stigmatized tourists react differently and try to overcome stigma in different ways, thereby opening up new avenues for research on cross-cultural studies in contemporary tourism.

Prof Omar Moufakkir, Associate Professor, at the Business Administration Department at GUST said, “The irony in contemporary tourism is that tourists from the developing world, who in their country of origin are considered members of a high status group, may find themselves projected by the out-group in the country visited onto the status of the devalued immigrant and the Muslim.  Being conscious about stigma by association, they become obliged to employ stigma management strategies in order to preserve the symbolic function of their tourist identity, and their own self-esteem. Being stigmatized by association, tourists from developing countries who are visiting a developed country for leisure may experience a different type of culture shock. Their culture shock is contemporary and primarily and ostensibly linked to stigma by association to two prejudiced and discredited groups: immigrants and Muslims. These costs can spoil the identity of the tourist, which in turn may result in a bad tourism experience.”

Prof Moufakkir earned his Ph.D from Michigan State University, in the United States of America in Resource Development, Degree in Park Management, Recreation and Tourism Resource Management. 


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