Since 2005, Dr. Alexis Papathanassis is a Professor for Cruise Management and e-Tourism at the Bremerhaven University of Applied Sciences. Before becoming rector at his university, Alexis was the appointed Dean for the Faculty of Management and Information Systems, Co-Director of the Institute for Maritime Tourism and Chairman of the Cruise Research Society. Alexis’ publication activity mainly focuses on the cruise sector and comprises over 120 contributions to textbooks, peer-reviewed scientific journals and conferences. He also acts as an academic reviewer for high-ranked tourism journals (with 213 reviews to date), including: Annals of Tourism Research, Tourism Management, Tourism Review and Intl. Journal of Tourism Research. In 2016, his paper: “Papathanassis, A. &, Knolle, F. (2011). Exploring the adoption and processing of online holiday reviews: A grounded theory approach. Tourism Management, 32: 215–224”, was listed amongst the most cited articles in Tourism Management. He also received the Emerald Literati Award for his paper: “Papathanassis, A. (2017). Cruise Tourism Management: State of the Art. Tourism Review, 72(1): 104-119”. Alexis’ research work has been downloaded over 188.000 times.
Besides being an advisory partner for Deloitte Consulting (Germany), he regularly acts as an independent consultant to numerous tour operators and cruise companies, working on numerous M&A and business development projects. Over the last years, Alexis has also participated in various national and international publicly-funded projects, aimed at cruise tourism development (e.g. European TEMPUSX programme – Development of Cruise Tourism in the Black Sea Region). Prior to joining fulltime academia, Alexis pursued a career at TUI, Europe’s leading tourism group. Joining the group as a management trainee in 1999, Alexis was appointed project manager & process engineer in 2001. In 2003, he became a business unit manager at TUI Contracting AG and was accountable for the company’s business interfaces and operations support areas. Upon his departure from the group as a business development manager with TUI Infotec, Alexis had already participated and successfully led various systems integration projects s in six TUI subsidiaries around Europe.
Born and raised in a family of tourism entrepreneurs on the island of Rhodes (Greece), Alexis has internalised the daily specifics of incoming tourism and the challenges of destination management policies. Alexis graduated with a degree in Business Administration at the University of Bath in 1996. He gained his MSc in Analysis, Design and Management of Information Systems with distinction from the London School of Economics & Political Science in 1997. Following a military service in Greece and parallel to his professional career, Alexis successfully completed his PhD in Economic Sciences at the Leibniz University (Hanover) in Germany. His doctoral thesis focused on the post-merger management of information and communication technologies within the tourism sector. The corresponding doctoral dissertation was published by the Deutsche Universitätsverlag (DUV). In 2016, he was awarded a honorary PhD by the University of Ovidius (Romania) for his contribution to the cruise tourism research.