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Event detail

(Online) Wednesday Research Seminar - Maternity in the tourism industry

Event information

START DATE 18 March 2020


END DATE 18 March 2020

We are pleased to invite you to our Wednesday Research Seminar. It will be held online on 18 March from 4pm via GoToMeeting platform.

Wednesday Research Seminar Series was launched in 2008, and has featured more than 270 presentations to date. The seminars provide a forum for researchers to share their work. Presenters include faculty from Middlesex University Dubai and other universities in the United Arab Emirates, as well as researchers from other global institutions. Dr. Heather Jeffrey will deliver seminar on:

“Maternity in the tourism industry”

Heather Jeffrey


In many contexts adequate maternity protection is almost non-existent, especially in the tourism-related industries. Maternity protection ensures equal access to employment, but also to the continuation of employment, a lack of maternity protection can alienate half of a country’s human resources and perpetuate traditional biological sex roles. Drawing on the stories of women working informally and formally, and in the public and private sectors in the Tunisian tourism industry, maternity protection is presented as a major challenge to the UNWTOs assertion that tourism can aid in the attainment of SDG 5: "achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls" (UNWTO, 2016). Women’s stories highlight the incompatibility of policy with pregnancy, presented here as culturally bound, and tourism.


Dr Heather Jeffrey completed her PhD at Middlesex University, London in 2017, her thesis is entitled A Discursive Analysis of Women’s Femininities within the Context of Tunisian Tourism. Heather joined Middlesex University, Dubai after having held faculty positions at the University of Bedfordshire, Middlesex University London, and the University of East London. Heather’s research interests centre on social inequality, qualitative methods, and gender studies and she was pleased to have been invited to become a member of the European Commission-funded International Network for Comparative Analysis of Social Inequalities in 2016. More recently Heather has been invited to become an associate for the non-profit organisation Equality in Tourism, she is also a dissertation reviewer for the Gender and Feminist Geographies Research Group at the Royal Geographical Society. In addition to creating scholarly outputs, Heather has written for the Huffington Post on issues related to tourism, gender and academia.

We look forward to seeing you at the seminar.

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