Georgetown University Impacts Program in El Nido

In collaboration with El Nido Resorts (ENR) and Department of Environmental Science of Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU), the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation will lead the GU Impacts program in El Nido. GU Impacts will build the capacity of young leaders to address environment and sustainability challenges in El Nido, Palawan, Philippines. Project areas for the 2017 Summer Program include Sustainable Tourism, Environmental Conservation, and Community Engagement.

Over the course of ten weeks, five GU fellows and two AdMU fellows will work with the Environment and Sustainability Department of ENR. Based in El Nido, Palawan, they will have the opportunity to work closely with decision-makers such as leaders of the community, civil society, and private sector; and other environmental sustainability practitioners. At the end of the program, Fellows must have delivered meaningful and technical assistance to identified stakeholders.
Fellows will learn about the tropical ecosystems represented in El Nido and why the area may be considered a biodiversity hotspot. Fellows will be acquainted with management regimes in place, both official and traditional, and evaluate strengths and weaknesses. Fellows will identify threats to sustainability that are brought about by both anthropogenic and natural factors, and learn that the application of the quadruple bottom line approach to business is key to taming these challenges and attaining business scalability.

El Nido, Palawan in the Philippines is an area of great natural beauty and high biodiversity, such that the Philippine Government was compelled to declare the 18 villages under a Managed Resource Protected Area. Its highest economic potential lies in the tourism activities in the area, as agriculture and fisheries are best described as sustenance and other industries are nonexistent.