Coffee Tourism in Ethiopia: Opportunities, Challenges, and Initiatives
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
This thesis explores the opportunities, challenges, and initiatives for coffee tourism in the context of Ethiopia. My research addresses five themes to achieve its research aims, which are as follows: arriving at prospective coffee tourism frameworks; addressing the reasons behind the underdevelopment of coffee tourism in Ethiopia; highlighting coffee tourism’s opportunities and challenges in Ethiopia; identifying potential coffee tourists, and; initiating coffee tourism through local collaborations. The core research methodologies are: fieldwork in Ethiopia involving a series of interviews with key stakeholders and a detailed case study of one potential coffee tourism region; digital ethnography, and; knowledge transfer activities enabled by several conceptual approaches such as development in Africa, power relations, reformed orientalism, situated knowledge, self-other, emotional geographies, and participatory geographies. Through this research, I found that coffee tourism cannot simply be a combination of coffee and tourism; coffee tourism needs to be understood through various contexts in addition to that of tourism; coffee tourism can be a more practical tourism form and a new coffee marketing vehicle in Ethiopia, and; coffee tourism potentially brings more advantages to the coffee industry in coffee bean exporting countries with current sustainable coffee initiatives such as fair trade or other coffee certification projects. Coffee tourism is not widely discussed in academia, and I argue that this research addresses several gaps in the literature: suggestions for coffee tourism frameworks, coffee tourism research in the context of Ethiopia, coffee tourism research beyond simple analysis in terms of the tourism or coffee industries, and a new illumination on Ethiopian culture, tourism, and coffee culture. Raising the topic of South Korea’s impact in Ethiopia as well as the East Asian role in coffee tourism is also an important contribution to academia. During my PhD tenure, I found a potential global partnership between coffee bean exporting countries and coffee bean importing countries through coffee. Ethiopia is an ideal place for coffee tourism, and it is my hope that coffee tourism could present an approach that brings to light Ethiopia's cultural wealth.
Department of Geography, University of Exeter
Funds for Women Graduates (FfWG)
PhD in Geography
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