Using the community capitals framework with a systems thinking lens, we explored how the development of ecotourism has influenced changes in community needs that in turn have influenced the functions of protected areas (PAs). Data collected through semi-structured interviews and secondary sources, the Chobe Enclave Conservation Trust, located adjacent to Chobe National Park in Botswana, provide the research context. Results indicated that ecotourism development has led to stock accumulation of the natural capital in the form of wildlife. On the other hand, ecotourism development through the prevalence of cash flow and reinvestment in agriculture transformed agricultural practices and increased the demand of land for ploughing and henceforth heightened community–wildlife conflicts. Consequently, competing use of land for agriculture, wildlife, and tourism establishments has the potential to alter the functions of PAs in their effort to accommodate new changes. The domino effect induced by the introduction of ecotourism in a rural and isolated area leads to community prosperity that changes community needs and priorities, triggering unintended environmental consequences that further require PAs adaptive mitigation interventions.
- capital stocks and flows
- community capitals framework
- Nature-based tourism
- wildlife-based ecotourism
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management