The San Diego Tourism Authority is a data-driven organization and continues to innovate and drive San Diego’s tourism sector forward. We are able to do this with the analysis and actionable insights provided by the Department of Research.
Meet the Team
The SDTA Department of Research is staffed by two experienced data and research professionals. Nate Kelley, the SDTA’s director of research, worked as an economist and financial analyst for more than a decade on the East Coast and relocated to San Diego to work with the SD Economic Development Council before joining the SDTA. Business Analyst Niki McDonald, a native San Diegan, has a strong background in marketing and hospitality and has worked at the SDTA for almost five years.
What do they do?
Nate and Niki both wear numerous hats, with tasks that include monitoring and analyzing macroeconomic and financial-market events and their impacts on San Diego tourism. They provide our organization, our members and the rest of the tourism industry with multiple data points such as recent hotel performance, industry employment statistics, estimates on visitation and spending, and much more.
The Department of Research serves as a kind of backbone for the rest of the SDTA and the San Diego tourism industry. The data tracked and analyzed is used by our Marketing, Sales and Communications departments for everything from strategic planning to measuring progress toward goals to estimating and projecting the return on investment for our stakeholders.
How can they help?
The Department of Research supplies our members with information and resources through multiple data offerings that are available on the SDTA website as well as the Member Industry Dashboard. The research team presents to member organizations, providing context and information to address industry uncertainties. The Department of Research also provides the numbers for the Annual Report, San Diego Tourism Fast Facts and San Diego General Facts publications.
The work of the SDTA Department of Research assists leaders in the local tourism industry in making better, more informed choices for their companies. Our members can rest assured knowing our team is on hand to provide data, insights and support.