Making Wildlife Economically Viable for Communities Living Around the Western Serengeti, Tanzania
The Serengeti is one of Eastern Africa’s most important and densely-populated wildlife habitats and provides one of its major tourist destinations. However, it is continuously under threat from rapid ecosystem degradation. A primary reason for this is the negative economic impact of wildlife on local landholders.~The study analyses the changes in this economic impact over recent years, as one area the Western Serengeti has experienced different approaches to settlement, land use and conservation management. Most recently, this management has encompassed the allocation of a certain proportion of wildlife revenues to community development activities in park-adjacent areas. However, these revenues alone, do not provide sufficient economic incentives for local communities to conserve wildlife. It is suggested, therefore, that more potential lies with the involvement of community members themselves as wildlife managers and entrepreneurs in collaboration with the private sector through a number of innovative arrangements and joint management. In addition, support from state agencies and donor-government projects must be maintained keeping multiple opportunities open which are flexible enough to respond to local changes and needs.