Dr. Nicole Apelian's research has clearly demonstrated that ecotourism done in a restorative manner can perpetuate and even increase intergenerational transmission of indigenous knowledge. Restorative ecotourism provides economic support, and can cause a re-shifting of cultural identity due to an increase in pride, value, and self-determination. Tourism without thought about the history of colonization or contextualizing where the local people are now in their cultural identity can cause further marginalization.
Dr. Apelian is also available for speaking engagements on a variety of topics. She is an engaging and dynamic speaker who brings energy and inspiration to her audience. She has keynoted at commencements, academic conferences, fundraisers, workshops and more.
Contact Dr. Nicole Apelian »
Given that tourism is likely to increase and put more pressure on people and land, it is important that tourism is done in a restorative fashion. Nicole's work shows that using restorative ecotourism to set up indigenous-based ecotourism ventures will ensure the sustainability of the people, the land, the culture, and the tourism itself. She is available for international consulting to assist government agencies, NGOs, indigenous communities, landholders, and lodge owners to maximize benefits for all involved.
Restorative ecotourism is more than sustainable ecotourism. Indigenous-based restorative ecotourism promotes empowerment and local engagement, is responsive to local value systems, and aims to halt marginalization in communities.
Dr. Apelian's goal for application is to find ways that indigenous community-based tourism can be improved for indigenous communities and the individuals within those communities for local people who want tourism. She works with lodge owners and safari companies to find and implement strategies that put both them and the local communities in a win-win situation. "Looky-look" tourism is discouraged and authenticity is encouraged.
- Click here to read Dr. Apelian's PhD dissertation, titled Restorative Ecotourism as a Solution to Intergenerational Knowledge Retention: An Exploratory Study with Two Communities of San Bushmen in Botswana
To read a more general article about restorative ecotourism in action, please download this recent article: Apelian, N. Spring 2014. The Kalahari San Bushmen of Botswana - Tales from a researcher and guide. Bulletin of Primitive Technology, pp. 54-59.
Apelian, N. 2015 (In Press). The significance of a visit to ancestral lands for a community of San Bushmen. Journal of Sustainability Education.
- Apelian, N. 2015 (Under Review). Increasing Indigenous Experiential Education Through Restorative Ecotourism: A Study of Two San Bushmen Communities, Symposium on Experiential Education Research.
Apelian, N. 2013. Aged-based attitudes toward formal schooling in two communities of San Bushmen in the western Kalahari, Botswana. In Proceedings of the 2013 Symposium on Experiential Education Research, pp. 47-51.
Interview and informal talk about the Naro (Nharo) Bushmen of Botswana, Nov. 2014 on blogtalkradio.
For a CV or more information about Dr. Nicole Apelian you may email her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
A little more about Nicole Apelian, Ph.D.
- Works with Indigenous communities and lodges to discuss and implement positive change for all involved
- Currently working on an ethnobotany book with Bushmen elders (at their request) to document edible, medicinal, and traditional plant uses in the Kalahari Desert
- Doctoral dissertation on the value of restorative ecotourism and its positive impact on indigenous knowledge transfer
- Traditional Skills Instructor
- Challenger on the TV series "Alone" on the History Channel
- MSc in Ecology and Evolution
- Lion researcher - lion population studies - ecological, genetic, and disease research
- Winner, Journal of Sustainability Education SNAP Award, RECHARGE Category: A Visit to Ancestral Lands for a Community of San Bushmen
- 20 years experience in Botswana as a researcher and guide
- Instructor and Graduate Advisor in Adventure Education, Indigenous Studies, Research Methodologies, Sustainability Education and Environmental Education at Prescott College
- Published many articles ranging from academic research articles to publications for general audiences
- Trained in the Art of Mentoring and Leadership
- Available for personal wellness coaching
- Professional keynote speaker and presenter
- Returned Peace Corps Volunteer