East Africa Community (EAC) Transboundary Conservation Workshop
Encouraging cross-country cooperation in the management and conservation of trans-boundary protected areas in East Africa.
- Client: East Africa Community (EAC)
- Partners: Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), United States Forest Service (USFS)
- Project Duration: March 2012 - June 2012
East Africa’s protected area management agencies are tasked with promoting economic development by safeguarding and enhancing environmental services provided by protected areas. This is realized through tourism development, watershed management, biodiversity conservation and other ecosystem services. Many important protected areas in this region are trans-boundary, in that they lie in more than one country. Because of this, there has been a serious lack of coordination in policies, legislation, planning, management structures and tourism strategies that hampers development and conservation for these protected areas. It is therefore essential to create structures and mechanisms for coordinating trans-boundary conservation initiatives, sharing knowledge and lessons learned, providing technical support and skills development and channeling funding for trans-boundary conservation in the East African region.
To address this challenge, Solimar helped the EAC and its project partners (WCS, USFS) implement a workshop at which the region’s protected area authorities, tourism boards, relevant national and regional authorities and key providers of technical assistance met to consider lessons learned from similar conservation efforts elsewhere in Africa. At this workshop, stakeholders discussed challenges and opportunities for improved trans-boundary management of wildlife, water, fire, extractive industries, and tourism in the region. More specifically, Solimar conducted an analysis of tourism in the trans-boundary protected areas and developed reports that served as a key part of the information available to workshop delegates.
Solimar conducted a stakeholder-led analysis of tourism in the trans-boundary protected areas of East Africa and looked at challenges to and opportunities for increasing revenue, development and conservation benefits from tourism. To conduct this analysis, Solimar met with key tourism stakeholders across the region to develop a complete tourism situational analysis of trans-boundary protected areas in the region. This information was shared with workshop attendees and served in guiding the dialogue.
The activities of this solution yielded the following results:
- Situation analysis of trans-boundary protected areas in East Africa, with Solimar’s participation focusing on tourism issues, opportunities and stakeholders involved in the regions
- Conference on trans-boundary protected areas hosted by the EAC in Arusha, Tanzania bringing together government, NGOs and tourism associations to discuss, prioritize, and plan for actions related to trans-boundary issues in East Africa
- White paper on trans-boundary protected areas in East Africa