OHA Australia Wide – Brent Moyle (OH 2000)

This year the OHA has launched OHA Australia Wide—an email circular profiling OHA members who live outside Melbourne.  In this edition, you can meet Dr Brent Moyle (2000)—a travelling professor working to expand Australian tourism.

Brent Moyle: A travelling professor working to expand Australian tourism

  • Years at Haileybury: 1995 to 2000 (Keysborough campus)
    Current location: Brisbane
    Other locations: Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Melbourne

Haileybury has always encouraged students to follow a passion and seize an opportunity. Dr Brent Moyle has certainly done this. As a first-year university student, Brent saw the arrival of low-cost airlines in Australia as a sign that tourism was going to become even more important to the national economy than it already was.  Spurred by this and a desire to travel, Brent transferred to a course in tourism management and hasn’t looked back.

He’s now the Dean (Graduate Studies) and Professor of Tourism at the University of the Sunshine Coast.  He’s travelled extensively conducting research into tourism opportunities; is responsible for the delivery of the PhD and Masters by research programs to 700+ students spread across eight schools; and collaborates with business, government and communities on sustainable tourism initiatives. His works leverages university resources and research to promote sustainable tourism in Australia, particularly remote communities.

Brent joined Haileybury in 1995.  As a keen competitive swimmer, he remembers the opening of the aquatic centre that year and using the 50-metre swimming pool for the first time.  He also remembers learning the word “insubordinate”: something which his teachers occasionally called him!  After finishing in 2000, he went to Monash University to study law and communications.  After one year, he transferred to a Bachelor of Business and a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons), majoring in tourism.  He then completed his PhD at Monash, graduating in 2010.

Since completing his PhD Brent has spent considerable time abroad as a visiting scholar in Brazil, China, Finland, Russia, South Africa, the UK and the USA. This international experience has shown him that those seeking to develop sustainable tourism across the globe often face similar issues, noting “It’s our role to think beyond university walls and stoke the fires of innovation to ensure stakeholders are equipped to navigate the obstacles for developing sustainable tourism and maintain a diversified economy.”

Brent sees the Chinese visitor market as a big opportunity for Australian tourism.  “The number of outbound Chinese visitors is absolutely astonishing.  We currently only capture a small portion.  There is immense potential to disperse visitors to regional communities.”  Chinese visitors have been assisted by cheaper flights, more efficient air routes and increasing wealth in China.  But there are also challenges.  Brent says that perhaps Australia isn’t ready to cater for the forecasted growth, especially in dense urban centres.

Brent has visited many interesting places. One that particularly stands out is Crimea.  Brent was one of the first Australians to visit following the annexation of Crimea by Russia. Despite the travel warnings, Brent says the Crimea was one of the most beautiful places he’s visited, but it was lacking some of the conveniences of home. For example, due to the sanctions imposed by the annexation his bank cards didn’t work, there was no roaming service for mobile phones and services such as Uber had been blocked. But visiting the Crimea and experiencing its challenges gave Brent the idea of researching tourism opportunities in areas that are geopolitically contested.

Brent currently calls the Sunshine Coast home.  He says, “Living in Queensland means there is need to spend money on fancy scarves or turtleneck sweaters!”

His advice to current Haileybury students is, “Find what your passion is.  If you have a dream chase it and enjoy the experience of the pursuit.  Don’t be afraid of failure as it is one step closer to success.  Listen to yourself and trust the world to take you on a journey.”  As for his own time at Haileybury, Brent says, “Simple – I wouldn’t have the opportunities I have today if it wasn’t for Haileybury.”

In short …

  • Where is the strangest place you’ve met a former Haileybury student?  Mt Vesuvius
  • Is there a film you’d recommend to anyone? The Usual Suspects (1995)
  • Have you met anyone famous?  I had the privilege of meeting a few famous people, but someone I never expected to meet and actually spend an extended period of time with was Pauline Hanson. I spent an hour with her in 2018 discussing tourism developments for outback Queensland.
  • If you could meet anyone dead or alive, who would it be? Vladimir Lenin

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