Original Research

The management of mountain gorilla tourism in Uganda: Are the socio-economic benefits realised?

Gift Muresherwa, Washington Makuzva, Cynthia N. Dube, Imelda Amony
The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa | Vol 18, No 1 | a1136 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/td.v18i1.1136 | © 2022 Gift Muresherwa, Washington Makuzva, Cynthia N. Dube, Imelda Amony | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 August 2021 | Published: 25 April 2022

About the author(s)

Gift Muresherwa, Department of Tourism and Events, Faculty of Business and Management Sciences, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Washington Makuzva, Department of Tourism and Events, Faculty of Business and Management Sciences, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Cynthia N. Dube, Department of Tourism and Events, Faculty of Business and Management Sciences, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Imelda Amony, Department of Tourism and Events, Faculty of Business and Management Sciences, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa


Share this article

Bookmark and Share

Abstract

Despite being endangered, the mountain gorilla (gorilla beringei beringei) is inextricably linked to tourism. With only 1069 primates globally, expanded conservation initiatives need to be extended to allow for continuous and sustainable benefits from gorilla tourism. This unique tourism niche has positively changed the economies of Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where they are endemic. Vast opportunities emanate from the management and conservation of the great apes (e.g. poverty alleviation, economic growth, etc.). The study examined the management of mountain gorilla tourism and its socio-economic contribution to selected stakeholders in Butogota, a rural community next to the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (BINP). To achieve this, structured face-to-face interviews were conducted with six stakeholder groups. In order to gather samples for the study, convenience sampling and snowball sampling were used. Data were collected using an interviewer-administered questionnaire and analysed with the help of the constant comparative method. Key findings show that mountain gorilla tourism activities benefit people in a number of ways, including job creation, entrepreneurial opportunities and expanded local infrastructure. The study highlights key imperatives for the effective management of mountain gorilla tourism, including developing infrastructure, investment in training, empowerment of locals, controlled access, and more conservation and dealing with the persistent corruption problem.


Keywords

mountain gorilla; conservation; gorilla tourism; primate; Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Metrics

Total abstract views: 752
Total article views: 808


Crossref Citations

No related citations found.