Achieving greater societal ROI from tourism investments through enhanced collaboration of key stakeholders

Hon. Filippe Savadogo, Minister of Culture, Tourism and Communication, Burkina Faso

No biography available at this time.

Address delivered by Abdoulaye Sankara

The subject of the presentation is cultural initiatives bridging the gap between North and South. In Burkina Faso the prices of raw materials and commodities are rising. Therefore the prices in the tourism industry are rising as well. This is the reason why Burkina Faso is analyzing and discussing these effects, since the tourism industry is important for the country. Lots of African countries have adopted tourism as an economic activity. However there should be recognized that it is an activity, which involves only few people.

The question: How can tourism help the development of the economy? Goes hand in hand with the millennium goals. Tourism is a tool to reach these goals. This tool will not work when the population is not participating. It is within the country’s vision that the population participates; therefore, cultural tourism activities and community-based tourism plans are developed.

Today the initiative in the tourism sector is embedded in the fight against poverty. Burkina Faso made a vision 2025, which has the ambition to contribute to general growth, increased employment opportunities and promotion of good governance.
“We should understand that the fight against poverty has to be done in partnership with the North” Also South-South should cooperate to attract more tourists. An example is to provide common visas, which allow people to travel between countries. To be able to reach a South-South cooperation all actors should be brought together. This cooperation should be in financial, technical and educational fields and has to reinforce the living standard of the population. “We need different actors and organizations who work with the government of Burkina Faso to work on the demand side of tourism.”


Vassilis Morfopoulos, Managing Director, Basic International Development Corporation (BIDC)

No biography available at this time.


Tourism has economic, environmental and social impacts upon emerging economies, particularly in small states (examples of small states are given e.g. Cuba, Maledives, Bahamas). Tourism is a synergistic process.

Collateral benefits of tourism in emerging countries are:
- economic diversification - infrastructure - education - public health - environmental conservation/ eco tourism - cultural invigoration - development of social institutions that maximize the benefits of tourism - projection of host country on the world stage (culture is communicated).

There are several trends in sustainable and high-value tourism destinations:
- heath and resort tourism - eco tourism - theme parks - recreation (golf/ horse riding etc.) - training parks (sports/arts/culture) - gaming - fractional ownership of holiday real estate - private ownership of residential partnerships.

The challenges to sustainable tourism are:
- product supply is narrow and seasonal  - private sector is poorly coordinated - lack of information and signs - slow recognition of changing lifestyles - poor marketing - insufficient training - weak cooperation between private and public sectors.

“Developing emerging economies need to borrow ideas from best case examples." This conference helps to see what might work and what doesn’t.


John Hummel, Regional Senior Adviser/Network Leader, Pro-Poor Sustainable Tourism, SNV Asia

John Hummel has been working in pro-poor, sustainable and ecotourism, and rural development for more than 15 years, as adviser, researcher, and as a professional in the tourism industry. He has been employed with SNV Netherlands Development Organisation as a pro-poor sustainable tourism adviser for more than twelve years. He worked in many countries in the Himalaya (Nepal, Bhutan, India, and Bangladesh), the Mekong (Lao PDR, Cambodia and Vietnam), and the Balkans (Albania). He initiated the tourism development components of SNV in Albania, Nepal, and Bhutan, and is currently supporting pro-poor sustainable tourism development sector for all SNV countries in Asia. He is the network leader of the tourism knowledge network of SNV Asia, consisting of around 20 tourism advisers. For SNV, he is also the coordinator for the corporate UNWTO/ST-EP Foundation/SNV partnership.

His experience and expertise involves capacity strengthening to national and local tourism organisations in pro-poor tourism value chain development, public private partnerships, participatory approaches in tourism planning and development, and strategy/policy development in pro-poor sustainable tourism. He has worked with national and local governments, private sector and international and national NGOs. He published on pro-poor and sustainable tourism, and developed and conducted training courses on several aspects of sustainable tourism development for poverty reduction. Recently, he co-edited a training reference manual for the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development on ‘Facilitating Sustainable Mountain Tourism’ (two volumes – resource manual and tool book).


The presentations main aims are to introduce SNV, which works on poverty reduction trough partnerships in tourism. SNV’s core business is capacity development to support local actors to strengthen their performance. Furthermore the presentation focuses at the impacts of pro-poor tourism, market based solutions in value chain developments and multi stakeholders collaborations.

The reason why tourism is an important tool to help poor people is that from the total spending of (package) tourists 15-20% stays in the visited country. Also the potential of tourism is growing, especially in several Asian countries the tourism industry grows tremendous.

By the work of SNV several situations as described in the Millennium Goals are improved at the same time, especially poverty reduction, the building of basic services (infrastructure/water supply) and the production of income (employment). In every country SNV is working there is looked how poor can benefit from tourism. In every country there is looked to apply the most suitable solutions. The question is asked: “Where do poor gain the most benefits?” and “Where is the potential to gain most benefits.” This means SNV is first analyzing the market and from that point there is looked at the social and cultural benefits for the people.

The SNV also looks at the value chain of tourism in countries. Besides looking at constraints and solutions, SNV thinks about how poor people might participate in the desired solutions.

Several examples for helping the poor in tourism are: - improve product quality  - develop market linkages - not only looking at the poor (small reach) but look at the whole market for bigger results  - improving policy making and sector coordination.