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Special Edition on Dark Tourism for The International Journal of Cities

Special issue call for papers from International Journal of Tourism Cities

IJTC is planning a special edition highlighting current research in Dark Tourism, and in particular its applicability to understanding its management in relation to cities as destinations.

Despite the recent growth of research into dark tourism (Dale & Robinson, 2011; Stone, 2013; Tarlow, 2005) and the growth of the dark tourism market (Biran & Hyde, 2013; Stone 2006; Stone & Sharpley, 2008), there has been little interest shown in understanding the relationship between dark tourism and urban tourism (Powell & Kennell 2015). The huge competition between cities, coupled with the growth in accessible transportation and the emergence of new economies into the global economy, has meant that cities that have not historically been well-known tourism destination are entering the tourism industry, leading to increased global completion between cities for urban tourists (Ben Dalia et al 2013).  Because of this, it is important for cities to understand areas of the tourism market in which they can offer novel and unique experiences to tourists, to increase their attractiveness – The growing Dark Tourism market (Biran & Hyde, 2013; Stone 2006; Stone & Sharpley, 2008) offers a way for many cities to become more competitive in this sense.

The attraction of death, disaster and the macabre promises to be a significant factor in the tourism sector worldwide, and in Europe in particular. Dark tourism, or thanotourism as it is sometimes called, offers the interested participant the chance to "gaze upon real or recreated death" (Stone, 2005: 3.) The fascination with scenes of tragedy is not unique to any one set or group of tourists, but  dark tourism, as yet, remains on the fringes of respectability: a number of authors have given consideration to "shades" of dark tourism (Lennon and Foley, 2000; Stone, 2006; Strange and Kempa, 2003) which is to say that it is recognised that there is a continuum of "dark" touristic experiences, ranging from very mild excitation to the grim reality of the holocaust and terrorism, for example.
There are a wide range of dark tourism products available to urban tourists in Europe, but these are rarely conceptualised as such.  The mixture of ‘light’ and ‘dark’ dark tourism products presents difficulties in categorisation and standardisation of the urban tourism offer, but this is a potential area of new product development for DMOs across Europe.

This special edition will be co-edited by Professor John Lennon (Glasgow Caledonian University, UK) and Raymond Powell (University of Greenwich, UK.)

Professor John Lennon is Director of the Moffat Centre for Travel and Tourism Business Development - the UK’s largest University based tourism consultancy and research centre.
He has undertaken over 500 tourism and travel projects in over 35 nations, including major projects on behalf of private sector and public sector clients in Norway, Denmark, Malawi, Singapore, Canada, Lithuania, the Caribbean, South Africa, the South Pacific.

Professor Lennon is a Specialist Policy Advisor to the National Tourism Organisation; VisitScotland and a Non-Executive Director of Historic Scotland. He is the author of five books and over 80 articles and numerous reports on the travel and tourism industry (
A seminal text in any study of Dark Tourism is Lennon, J., & Foley, M. (2000). Dark Tourism: the attraction of death and disaster, Thomson, London.

Raymond Powell is a Senior Lecturer in Tourism in the Business Faculty of the University of Greenwich, London UK. He is fully engaged in teaching and research at all levels, with particular research interests in cultural tourism and heritage; dark tourism; museums; aspects of entrepreneurship and employability. Sustainability and good management of Tourism is at the heart of his approach to the industry.
In addition, Raymond is currently researching his PhD on the theme of representations of tourism in popular culture: a consideration of its influence and significance to contemporary UK mass tourism consumers.

Submissions are invited by  25th March 2017. Please submit to:
[email protected]
Papers should be a maximum of 8000 words. All submissions will be subject to blind peer review.  Publication for accepted papers is planned for December 2017.
Please address all queries and questions regarding suitability of potential papers to Raymond Powell at [email protected]

Ben-Dalia, S. Collins-Kreiner, N., Churchman, A.  (2013) ' Evaluation of an Urban Tourism Destination' in Tourism Geographies Vol. 15, Iss. 2: 223-249

Biran, A. & Hyde, K. F. (2013) "New perspectives on dark tourism", International Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research, Vol. 7 Iss: 3, pp.191 – 198

Dale, C., & Robinson, N. (2011), “Dark Tourism”, in Robinson, P., Heitmann, S., &  Dieke, P. (Eds). Research Themes for Tourism,  38(1), pp 193-209.

Lennon, J., & Foley, M. (2000). Dark Tourism: the attraction of death and disaster, Thomson, London.

Powell, R. & Kennell, J.  (2015) “Dark Tourism and Cities in Europe – an overview of the field”
Cultural Tourism in a Digital Era
Second International Conference IACuDiT,
Athens, 2015, Springer Proceedings in Business and Economics, Springer

Stone, P. (2006). “A Dark Tourism spectrum: towards a typology of death and macabre related tourist sites, attractions and exhibitions”, Tourism ,54(2), pp. 145-160

Stone, P., (2013). Dark tourism scholarship: A critical review. International Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research, 7(3), pp.307-318.

Stone, P.R. and Sharpley, R. (2008), “Consuming dark tourism: A thanatological perspective”, Annals of Tourism Research,  Vol 35, no.2, pp. 574-595.

Strange, C., & Kempa, M. (2003). “Shades of Dark Tourism: Alcatraz and Robben Island” Annals of Tourism Research, 30(2) pp.386-405.

Tarlow, P. (2005). Dark tourism: The appealing ‘dark’side of tourism and more. Niche tourism: Contemporary issues, trends and cases, 47-57.