Crisis of The Kalahari

The plight of indigenous people groups in Botswana’s Central Kalahari Game Reserve is a challenging issue within the conservation lexicon. Historically, the government of Botswana has enacted policies that greatly marginalized those who were time-tested environmental stewards. During more recent years, NGOs and individuals who have lobbied on their behalf have become political targets. Given this complex scenario, it is imperative to reinforce the continuance of speaking out against government corruption, and stressing that intra- and international actors should seek out ways of fostering mutually beneficial relationships with Africa’s indigenous and rural peoples in order that biologically diverse places on the planet would remain intact.

Michael Schwartz is a freelance journalist, wildlife photographer, and consultant whose primary focus is wilderness and wildlife conservation in Africa. With a BA in Journalism and an MA in African Studies, he has researched a wide variety of topics including wildlife trafficking, canned hunting, indigenous rights, and community-based sustainable development. The question of how to meet the needs of people, while preserving the wilderness and wildlife as an African heritage is what he is hopes to help answer. His work has been published in Africa Geographic Magazine, Africa Geographic Online, and National Geographic. He has also partnered with a Ugandan ecotourism company as a part-time consultant and safari guide.