Dr Steve Taylor


Head of Centre

d: 01397 874217
e: Steve Taylor

Current research

Slow Adventure In Northern Territories logo

Steve’s current workload is centred on project management and development, consultancy and academic research. With a track record of securing EU-funding for projects, the development of tourism and outdoor recreation projects through funding streams such as Interreg, ERDF, Horizon 2020 and ERASMUS+ is a central part of his duties.

One of Steve’s principal current roles is the management of the DETOUR trans-national project, financed through the ERASMUS+ programme. The project parallels the ADVENT Erasmus+ initiative, run by close colleagues in Iceland. The projects aim to develop the skills of students and SMEs in the wellbeing tourism and adventure tourism sectors respectively, with a focus on digital marketing and product development skills.
He is centrally involved in three of CRTR’s other current projects: the PERICLES Horizon 2020 project, and two 2020-2022 projects co-financed by the Northern Periphery and Arctic programme region: StoryTagging, exploring digital solutions to promote the creative industry sector, and SCITOUR, centred on the development of a scientific tourism brand and platform to promote new tourism products.

Steve has been involved in the development of the Slow Adventure® marketing concept since 2014.  Having developed the ‘Slow Adventure in Northern Territories’ Interreg project, he is a co-founder and director of Slow Adventure Ltd, created to develop, promote and sell ‘slow adventures’ across Europe.


PhD in Tourism, University of Otago, New Zealand

MSc (with Distinction) in Rural and Regional Resources Planning, University of Aberdeen

BA (Hons) in Geography, University of Leeds


Steve has a background in sustainable travel. He worked for the public sector for five years developing transport policy, writing successful European funding applications and managing projects such as the Interreg IIIC ‘Concept’ sustainable transport project. A move into the private sector, working as Principal Consultant for Capita Symonds, saw him developing further project management experience in the sustainable transport sector. At this time he developed a great passion for mountain biking.

Seeking his next challenge, Steve left the UK to undertake his adventure tourism PhD in New Zealand. His thesis was entitled “Extending the Dream Machine’: Understanding Dedicated Participation in Mountain Biking. Using a qualitative method of in-depth interviews and general induction analysis, he interviewed mountain bikers in New Zealand and the UK to try to understand the range of psychological, sociological and physiological factors, along with site characteristics and information sources, which influence their participation.

Working a season in Whistler kindled Steve’s other outdoor passion, skiing. His other interests include hiking, winter mountaineering, travel and contemporary literature.

Research interests

Mountain biking

Sustainable travel/transport

Psychological elements of adventure sports

Peer pressure/social recognition of recreational participation

List of Publications

Cater, C., Albayrak, T., Caber, M. and Taylor, S. (2020) Flow, Satisfaction and Storytelling: A Causal Relationship? Evidence from Scuba Diving in Turkey.  Current Issues in Tourism, DOI: 10.1080/13683500.2020.1803221

Farkić, J., Filep, S. and Taylor, S. (2020) Shaping tourists’ psychological wellbeing through guided slow adventures.  Journal of Sustainable Tourism, DOI: 10.1080/09669582.2020.1789156.

Varley, P.J., Huijbens, E.H., Taylor, S. and Laven, D. (2020) Slow Adventure: From Natural Concept to Consumer Desire. Östersund : Mid Sweden University (Rapportserien / European Tourism Research Institute 2020:2).

Farkić, J., Taylor, S. and Bellshaw, S.M. (2020) Slow adventure in remote and rural areas – Creating and narrating the tourism product. In M. Koscak and T. O’Rourke (Eds.), Ethical and Responsible Tourism: Managing Sustainability in Local Tourism Destinations. Abingdon (UK): Routledge.

Farkić, J., and Taylor, S. (2019) Rethinking Tourist Wellbeing through the Concept of Slow Adventure. Sports, 7, 190.

Laven, D., Chekalina, T., Fuchs, M., Margaryan, L., Varley, P., & Taylor, S. (2019) Building the Slow Adventure Brand in the Northern Periphery. In C. Cassinger, A. Lucarelli, & S. Gyimóthy (Eds.), The Nordic Wave in Place Branding. Poetics, Practices, Politics (pp, in print). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Taylor, S, Varley, P. and Mykletun, R. (2018) Nordic Adventure Tourism (Eds.) Special issue of Scandinavian Journal of Hospitality and Tourism, 18 (4).

Taylor, S. (2018) Mountain Biking’s Role in Regional Economic Development: The Experience of Scotland, in M. Sand (Ed.) Kongress für Outdoor und Adventure: Mountainbike und Tourismus, Treuchtlingen, Germany.

Taylor, S. and Brendehaug, E. (2016) Mountain biking, hiking and hunting: Review of the Literature. Rapport nr. 7/2015. Vestlandsforsking, Sogndal, Norway.

Rowsell, B., Maher, P.T., Taylor, S. and Mullins, P.M. (2014) Mountain Bike Tourism Under the Midnight Sun.  In Viken, A. & Granas, B. (eds).  Destination Dynamics. Turns and Tactics.  Franham, Ashgate.

Varley, P. and Taylor, S. (eds.) (2014) Being there: Slow, fast, traditional, wild, urban, natural…’, 2013 Adventure Conference: Proceedings, CRTR, Fort William.

Taylor, S., Varley, P. and Johnston, T. (eds.) (2013) Adventure Tourism: Meaning, Experience and Learning, Abingdon, Routledge.

Taylor, S., Varley, P. and Diggins, N. (2013) Review of mountain developments and potential opportunities in Scotland.  In Pothecary, F., Brown, K.M. and Banks, E.A. (2013). Mountain biking in Scotland. Understanding and resolving land use conflict’, Vol 1.

Taylor, S., Varley, P. and Diggins, N. (2013) Developing mountain biking in the Scottish Highlands.  In Pothecary, F., Brown, K.M. and Banks, E.A. (2013). Mountain biking in Scotland. Understanding and resolving land use conflict’, Vol 1.

Taylor, S. (2010) ‘Extending the dream machine’: Understanding people’s participation in mountain biking. Annals of Leisure Research, 13(1 & 2), 259 – 281.

Carr, N. & Taylor, S. (2010) Sex shops of the 21st Century: Are ‘you’ being served? In N. Carr & Y. Poria. (eds). Sex and the sexual during people’s leisure and tourism experiences. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Conference Presentations

Taylor, S. (2017) Slow Adventure in Northern Territories.  Wild Scotland Conference, December 2017, Pitlochry.

Taylor, S. (2016) Have you had your vitamin N?  Promoting nature-based tourism in the northern periphery.  Critical Tourism Studies North America Conference, August 2016, Huntsville, Canada.

Taylor, S. (2015) The role of biking in the regional economic development: a case study of Scotland. Bike Alpe Adria Conference, March 2015, Dobrovo, Slovenia – invited speaker.

Taylor, S. (2014) Mountain biking’s role in regional economic development: the experience of Scotland.  Fjord Norway/NCE Tourism Workshop, September 2014, Voss, Norway – invited speaker.

Taylor, S. (2014) Understanding Mountain Bikers’ Choices of Recreational Settings, The 7th International Conference on Monitoring and Management of Visitors in Recreational and Protected Areas, August 2014, Tallinn, Estonia.

Varley, P. and Taylor, S. (2012) Making Meaning: Doxa, Habitus and Symbolic Capital in Mountain Biking, “Meanings, markets and magic” 2012 Adventure Conference, Fort William.

Varley, P. and Taylor, S. (2012) A Review of Mountain Biking in Scotland: Opportunities And Developments.  Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland National Conference, September 2012, Perth.