Facial emotion recognition research in the hospitality and tourism industry: a thematic content analysis

Uzeyir Kement, Muhittin Cavusoglu, Berkan Başar, Nihan Tomris Küçün

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to conduct a thematic content analysis of facial emotion recognition (FER) research within the context of the hospitality and tourism industry. Through this analysis, the study aims to identify key themes, trends and implications of the utilization of FER technology in enhancing customer emotions and experiences within hospitality and tourism settings. Design/methodology/approach: This is qualitative research that utilizes thematic content analysis. The research data were obtained from the Scopus database. A total of 45 articles (titles, abstracts and keywords) were coded into MAXQDA and VOSWiever programs for data analyses and mapping. Findings: Based on the analyses, the predominant term used in titles was emotion, indicating its centrality in the research domain. Moreover, the most prevalent concepts in this field were emotion and experience. Notably, facial emotion recognition emerged as the most frequently utilized term within this context. Within the hospitality and tourism industry, FER was primarily employed within the travel sub-branch. Finally, the research culminated in the visualization of the theoretical framework and conceptual background, offering a comprehensive overview of the field. Originality/value: There is a growing demand for using FER technology specifically within the hospitality and tourism industry context; therefore, growing scientific research has been conducted on this topic recently. By conducting a thematic content analysis, this study uncovered novel insights into the utilization of this technology to enhance customer emotions and experiences, thereby contributing to a deeper understanding of its potential implications and applications within the hospitality and tourism industry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalWorldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • Basic emotion
  • Experience
  • Facial expression
  • FER
  • Hotel technology
  • Thematic content

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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