Richard is a doctoral student at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT). He holds a Bachelor of Science in Tourism (magna cum laude) from the University of Santo Tomas, Philippines, and Master of International Tourism Management (First Class Honours) at AUT. He is a recipient of a New Zealand ASEAN Scholars Award (2013) and AUT Vice-Chancellor’s Doctoral Scholarship (2017).
While studying Richard has worked as a university lecturer, and as researcher and consultant for various government-funded ecotourism initiatives focused on providing alternative livelihoods for communities in the Philippines. Currently, his doctoral research is focused on investigating how social entrepreneurship and tourism serve as a catalyst for positive societal transformation and community development.
His other research interests include volcano tourism, tourist behaviour, destination heritage, tourism policy frameworks, and tourism impacts and sustainability.