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Sustainability 2018, 10(2), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10020495

The Challenge to Foster Foreign Students’ Experiences for Sustainable Higher Educational Institutions

Business Administration and Sociology Department, School of Economics, University of Extremadura, Ave. Elvas s/n, 06006 Badajoz, Spain
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Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 4 February 2018 / Accepted: 5 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
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Abstract

While most companies are developing strategies that focus on responsibility and sustainability, recent discussions in higher educational institutions query the contribution of university social responsibility. Based on the theory of stakeholders and the new strategic paradigm of universities becoming sustainable corporations, the purpose of this paper is to determine Erasmus students’ opinions on their experiences abroad, as they relate to the importance they attribute to their emotions, and their relationship with and loyalty to their host university’s country as a tourism destination. The method inquired into Erasmus students’ impressions when studying in Spain through an ad hoc questionnaire based on academic literature and the Delphi technique. Survey data was analyzed through an exploratory factor analysis and partial least squares structural equation modeling. The study is a first attempt at analyzing experiential marketing in Erasmus students, who we considered tourists. The results support experiential marketing as a key approach for achieving sustainability in universities. The paper draws attention to the need for institutions to be more aware of the needs of foreign students as important stakeholders when designing mobility programs, as well as suggestions on how this awareness can be cultivated, in order to contribute to the consolidation of the selected country as a tourism destination. View Full-Text
Keywords: Erasmus students; experiential marketing; higher education; loyalty; tourism; sustainability; universities Erasmus students; experiential marketing; higher education; loyalty; tourism; sustainability; universities
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Bañegil-Palacios, T.M.; Sánchez-Hernández, M.I. The Challenge to Foster Foreign Students’ Experiences for Sustainable Higher Educational Institutions. Sustainability 2018, 10, 495.

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