Social safeguard for protected area tourism in sub-saharan Africa: Request for input


The Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO) of the European Commission has commissioned a study entitled “Strengthening and replication of ecotourism achievements in the protected areas of Sub-Saharan Africa” (Framework Contract EuropeAid/138778/DH/SER/multi, Specific contract 2018/404616). The company Prospect C&S is providing technical support to this study through a consortium led by COWI Belgium.

The European Union has been supporting the conservation of biodiversity in protected areas of Sub-Saharan Africa for several decades. Among the multiple actions supported, several have focused on the development of tourism as the main ecosystem service provided by these protected areas. 

A safeguard document is being developed to provide measures to protect indigenous and local populations from being harmed by tourism projects in protected areas in sub-saharan Africa.  Objectives of the safeguard include the following:

  • Guide the systematic social assessment of tourism project proposals in protected areas and their buffer zones.
  • Contribute to integrating social considerations into the decision-making process.
  • Help assess the possible environmental and social risks and the impacts (positive or negative) associated with a development intervention.
  • Help define measures and processes to effectively manage risks and enhance positive impacts.
  • Guide stakeholder engagement to enhancing the quality of project proposals and increase local ownership.

Request for input

Please get in touch if:

(a) you have examples of existing safeguard documents used for indigenous and local populations that could be drawn upon and cited within the new safeguard document (e.g. used in the tourism sector, used in protected areas).  

(b) you are a protected area manager in sub-saharan Africa that would like to participate in the consultation process (in English or French).

Contact: Dr Anna Spenceley –

Example of existing safeguard materials:

Screenshot Mural

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