n South African Geographical Journal = Suid-Afrikaanse Geografiese Tydskrif - Enclaves and Shadow State tourism in the Okavango Delta, Botswana - research

Volume 102 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0373-6245
  • E-ISSN: 2151-2418
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This article draws from the concept of Shadow State to analyse the effects of tourism development in a Shadow State environment using the Okavango Delta (OD) in Botswana as a case study. The relationship between Shadow State and tourism enclaves and the resultant effects of tourism development in the OD is examined based on a qualitative approach. Results indicate the following: the creation of Shadow State in tourism development in Botswana has resulted in the creation of a tourism enclave emerging in the OD, especially core areas of the wetland; the tourism enclave is evidenced by the dominance of the tourism industry by multinational companies and investors; association of some of the multinational companies to local political and business elites; and, the increased corruption and a monopoly of tourism development by a few companies. This article therefore argues that tourism development in destination areas like the OD should aim at achieving the ideals of sustainable tourism where the industry should be more inclusive and beneficial to all stakeholders especially residents. The failure to eliminate signs of a Shadow State related to tourism development in the OD would render the ideals of sustainable tourism, which form part of the country’s sustainable development agenda, fruitless.

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