Collaborative actions for sustainable tourism (COAST)

  • Novelli, Marina (PI)
  • Benson, Angela (CoPI)

Project Details


Collaborative actions for sustainable tourism (COAST) was an internationally developed training needs analysis for environmental management and ecotourism development in Nigeria, Gambia and Ghana.

Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) contains 32 coastal states, and unsustainable tourism practices have already led to irreparable damage to fragile ecosystems and significant economic losses. The United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), Global Environmental Facility (GEF), UNIDO and UNWTO have worked together to develop the Collaborative Actions for Sustainable Tourism (COAST) initiative targeting the sub-Saharan coastline.

The COAST Project was implemented in nine sub-Saharan African countries (Cameroon, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal, Seychelles and Tanzania).

The project was developed with an aim of reducing the harmful impacts of sustainable tourism practices to the coastal ecosystems.The overall Goal of the COAST Project is to “support and enhance the conservation of globally significant coastal and marine ecosystems and associated biodiversity in Sub-Saharan Africa, through the reduction of the negative environmental impacts which they receive as a result of coastal tourism.”

University of Brighton's Professor Marina Novelli and Dr Angela Benson were part of a consortium of five experts undertaking research in three of the nine COAST demonstrator projects.

The objective of the COAST project was to demonstrate and support the adoption of best practice strategies for sustainable tourism to reduce the degradation of marine and coastal environments of trans-boundary significance.

Key findings

The two main outcomes of the project were:

> Sustainable tourism approaches for reducing pollution, contamination and environmental degradation from coastal tourism demonstrated in the Sub-Saharan African context;
> National and local mechanisms supporting sustainable tourism governance and management identified and enhanced to facilitate uptake of Best Available Practices (BAPs) and Best Available Technology (BATs).

Research into BAPs and BATs in Nigeria, Gambia (Novelli) and Ghana (Benson) led to the identification of training needs and government guidelines for ecotourism development. On this basis, COAST identified demo sites and delivered for example targeted training and local initiatives related to workforce development, local ability to contribute to the decision-making process and the enhancement of local livelihood opportunities through the development of responsible tourism initiatives.
Effective start/end date1/09/1231/08/17


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.