Leveraging social capital for the recovery and regeneration of the ecotourism sector in Cameroon

Vyasha Harilal, Tembi Maloney Tichaawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This paper examines leveraging social capital to regenerate the ecotourism sector in Cameroon. Using a qualitative approach, in-depth interviews were held with local community leaders, governmental stakeholders, and NGOs. These informants possessed nuanced knowledge of the state of ecotourism in the region, thus constituted integral stakeholders in the ecotourism–community–social capital nexus. The findings of the study indicate that notions of social capital can be leveraged in the traditional hierarchy of communities to influence support for regenerating the sector. This can also address problems affecting the successful (re)development of the sector, stemming from the geopolitical crisis, where levels of trust (associated with social capital) in national authorities may be influenced by traditional authorities, like community leaders. The novelty and theoretical contribution of this paper lie in its unique conceptualisation of regeneration of ecotourism, through the lens of social capital and the nuanced geopolitical situation which contextualises the landscape.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDevelopment Southern Africa
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Cameroon
  • ecotourism
  • regeneration
  • social capital

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development

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