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2013 Industry Relevance Award Given by the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research
to Two Studies Focusing on the Use of Technology to Boost Industry Revenues

Ithaca, NY, May 13, 2013 - Two research studies that focus on using technology to increase lodging industry revenues have been named winners of the 2013 Industry Relevance Award, given annually by the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) at the School of Hotel Administration. The winners are Chris K. Anderson, for his report, "The Impact of Social Media on Lodging Performance," and Peng Liu, who developed a novel and valuable tool for pricing hotel room reservations, as detailed in his report, "Optimizing Hotel Pricing: A New Approach to Hotel Reservations." Both the reports and the tool are available at no charge from the CHR.

The Industry Relevance Award recognizes faculty who have researched an important topic and created a CHR Report or CHR Tool that has had significant impact on the hospitality industry. The award winners are determined by the CHR's advisory board research committee members and the users of the CHR's website, based on downloads and nominations from industry practitioners. In the relatively short time they have been available, together these two papers have been downloaded by nearly 3,000 users of the CHR website.

Anderson's study is the first comprehensive effort to quantify the effect of social media on the lodging industry, and it supports the hotel industry's belief that social media are driving business. Examining the effects of online reviews on consumers' lodging purchase decisions and the hotels' pricing power, Anderson, who is an associate professor at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, analyzed hotel-related data from ReviewPro, STR, Travelocity, and TripAdvisor to quantify the effects of social media reviews and reputation on the hotel industry. The results showed that social media commentaries do move markets, and it makes sense for hotel operators to pay attention to their online reputation.

Liu's report addresses the industry's continuing effort to predict future room demand. His insight was to develop a tool that sets separate prices on the room and the option to use the room, based on the traveler's own estimate of the likelihood that the trip will occur. An assistant professor at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, Liu explained in the report and demonstrated in the tool that the value of the reservation increases as the traveler's certainty of travel increases. At the same time, the room rate decreases according to likelihood that the traveler will actually occupy that room. This tool therefore provides a mechanism by which hotel managers can obtain more accurate information regarding future room demand and potential guests can gain a more favorable rate in exchange for revealing the critical information regarding whether their trip will actually occur.

About The Center for Hospitality Research

A unit of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) sponsors research designed to improve practices in the hospitality industry. Under the lead of the center's 72 corporate affiliates, experienced scholars work closely with business executives to discover new insights into strategic, managerial and operating practices. The center also publishes the award-winning hospitality journal, the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly. To learn more about the center and its projects, visit www.chr.cornell.edu.


Contact:

Jane Henion
607.254.8987
jmh222@cornell.edu




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