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Florian Zach

Associate Professor
Florian Zach
355 Wallace Hall, Virginia Tech
295 West Campus Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061


Florian Zach is an Associate Professor in the Howard Feiertag Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Tech, USA. He received his PhD in Business Administration from Temple University, USA and his Master in International Economics and Business Studies from the University of Innsbruck, Austria. His research focuses on strategic management in the context of the hospitality and tourism industry. To that end he investigates innovation behavior, market entry and positioning strategies, and consequences of disruption. His research methods predominantly include primary and secondary data sets, quantitative analyses (regression, structural equation model, panel data, event study), and data analytics and preparation with Python.

To further innovation research in tourism and hospitality he co-founded and currently co-chairs the Alliance for Innovators and Researchers in Tourism and Hospitality (AIRTH; to connect professionals and academics and provide free innovation case studies for teaching. Dr. Zach publishes in internationally top ranked tourism and hospitality journals including Annals of Tourism Research, Tourism Management, International Journal of Hospitality management, Journal of Travel Research, and Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research and attends hospitality and tourism conferences.


Research Area 

  • Firm innovation behavior
  • Disruption
  • Market entry

Research Methods

  • Regression, panel data
  • Structural equation modelling
  • Social network analysis

Recent Publications that best represent my research

  • Zhang, H., Zach, F.J., & Xiang, Z. (2023). Design standardization by Airbnb multi-unit hosts: Professionalization in the sharing economy. Annals of Tourism Research. doi:10.1016/j.annals.2022.103523 [Publisher] [Google Scholar] [Open Access – VTechWorks] (P) (ABDC list: A*)
  • Bianco, S., Singal, M., Zach, F.J., & Nicolau, J.L. (2023). Dual-Branded Hotels: Resource-based entry strategies in agglomerated markets. Tourism Management. doi:10.1016/j.tourman.2022.104663 [Publisher] [Google Scholar] [Open Access – VTechWorks] (P) (ABDC list: A*)
  • Zach, F.J., Schnitzer, M., and Falk, M. (2021). Product diversification and isomorphism: The case of ski resorts and “me-too” innovation. Annals of Tourism Research 90. doi: 10.1016/j.annals.2021.103267 [Publisher – Open Access] (P) (ABDC list: A*)
  • Zach, F.J., Nicolau, J.L., and Sharma, A. (2020). Disruptive innovation, innovation adoption and incumbent market value: The case of Airbnb. Annals of Tourism Research. doi:10.1016/j.annals.2019.102818 [Publisher] [Google Scholar] (P) (ABDC list: A*)
  • Reinhold, S., Zach, F.J., and Krizaj, D. (2018). Business Models in Tourism – State of the Art. Tourism Review 74(6), 1120-1134. doi:10.1108/TR-02-2018-0027 [Publisher] [Google Scholar]

(P) Pamplin elite list journal



  • MGT 4394 Strategic Management (capstone course)


  • HTM 5944 Graduate Seminar

PhD Supervision

  • Yutong Han (expected 2024) (co-chair with Zheng Xiang)
  • Huihui Zhang (expected 2024) (co-chair with Zheng Xiang)
  • Simone Bianco (graduated 2023) (co-chair with Manisha Singal)

Information for PhD applicants: Please reach out if you are interested in my research and research methods. A background in quantitative analysis or programming is preferred. VT offers several courses to learn and improve quantitative research methods.

Professional Engagement


Professional Experiences

Visiting Positions