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Saroop Roy B.R. Assistant Professor, Kerala Institute of Tourism and Travel Studies (KITTS), Thiruvananthapuram

Saroop Roy B.R. is currently Assistant Professor, Kerala Institute of Tourism and Travel Studies, and the project coordinator of the Responsible Tourism Initiative in Kerala, and he has played a significant role in the formulation and implementation of the project in the state. He finished his degree of Masters of Tourism Administration (MTA) from the University of Kerala after finishing his B.Tech in Electronics and Communication engineering. Starting his career in tourism field as a trainee at Thenmala Ecotourism Promotion Society (TEPS) in 2000, he was the Kerala co-ordinator of EQUATIONS, a Bengaluru-based research campaign and advocacy organization on tourism policies and issues, for eight years. In 2010, he moved to the tourism academic field as faculty MBA (Tourism) at the Institute of Management in Kerala (IMK) under the University of Kerala. In 2011, he joined KITTS as Assistant Professor in Travel and Tourism (T&T). His expertise includes areas in tourism policy formulation, ecotourism, responsible tourism, rural tourism and community-linked tourism projects.

During his tenure at EQUATIONS, he participated in the SBSTTA 13 meeting of the Convention on Biological Diversity held at Rome in February 2008. He also led the Indian delegation of ecotourism practitioners to attend the South African and Indian Practitioners’ Workshop to exchange lessons and best practices on using nature tourism as a force for Poverty Alleviation at Johannesburg in May 2008. He was also the resource person at various sessions on Institution Building for Sustainable Tourism and Livelihoods, organized by UNDP at IRMA, Anand as part of the Endogenous Tourism Project in 2006 and 2008. He participated and presented papers at various international forums including the ‘Canopy Tourism: Concept and Practice in the Indian Context,’ at the 5th International Canopy Conference in October 2009, Bengaluru, and made the key note presentation on environmental responsibility at the International Conference on Responsible Tourism—Looking Back: Moving Ahead—held at Kumarakom in June 2013.

On the policy front, he was the drafting committee member of the Kerala Tourism Policy 2012, Revamping of Homestay Classification Scheme for Kerala 2015 and preparation of charter for Green Carpet initiative for Kerala Tourism 2016.

Vijayakumar and Saroop Roy jointly authored the books Tourism and Livelihood: Selected Experiences from Kerala (2011), A Case Study on Kumarakom (2013) and submitted research paper ‘Community Based Tourism Business in Kumarakom: A Case Study of Innovative Products and Experiences’ which was accepted for presentation at the 2nd UNWTO Knowledge Network Global Forum held at Mexico in 2014.