Plugging the Gaps in Africa’s Tourism System: The Need for Tourism Leadership

  • Adun OkupeEmail author
Part of the Geographies of Tourism and Global Change book series (GTGC)


Africa has immense tourism potential. Yet, this potential remains unrealized, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. While there is increasing awareness of the need for economic diversification, especially now for resource-rich economies affected by the volatility on the commodities exchange, the tourism industry in sub-Saharan Africa has not received the concerted and coordinated focus it requires to fully harness its potential. This paper presents the case for a systems approach to tourism development, one that considers the multi-faceted nature of the tourism industry. It also highlights some of the gaps in the system that affect the harnessing of the continent’s tourism potential. Effective leadership remains the key missing agent required for the transformation of the industry. Tourism leaders have an important role to play in shaping tourism and enhancing its contributions to the sustainable development of sub-Saharan Africa. The paper provides policy recommendations and directions for future research in its concluding remarks.


Tourism leadership Tourism system Sustainable development Sub-Saharan Africa 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lagos Business SchoolLagosNigeria

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