Wednesday, July 13, 2022 - 2:00pm
School of Medical Sciences ( SMS) Auditorium
Prof. Johnson Nyarko Boampong, Vice-Chancellor

The University community and the general public are hereby invited to the Inaugural Lecture to be delivered by Prof. Kwaku A. A. Boakye, Professor of Tourism, Dean of Office of International Relations, UCC

Topic: Tourism as a vehicle for Ghana’s development: Mirage, miracle or myth?

Only Professors who have given their Inaugural Lecture would be required to robe to welcome their colleague. The gowns would be available at the Reception of the School of Medical Sciences Auditorium on the day of the programme.

All are cordially invited.


Prof. Kwaku Boakye (PhD, M.Phil., B.Sc. Tourism, PgDip Hospitality Operations) is a Professor of Tourism at the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. During his 18-year career as a tourism academic, he has published more than 45 scholarly and technical papers and played a key/ advisory role on a number of projects/ committees for the Government of Ghana and other International Bodies on tourism development. Prof. Boakye has also worked internationally, having served as a visiting Senior Fulbright Research Scholar in the United States of America for one academic year and paid working visits to University of Girona Spain, the Baden-Watternburg State University in Lorrach Germany, and the University of Lausanne, Switzerland where he has delivered, lectures seminars and, organised workshops. He also serves as external examiner and supervisor for some universities in Ghana, Africa, and Europe and is a reviewer for numerous Scopus-indexed academic journals in tourism.

Prof Boakye’s consultancy and scholarly work is well appreciated particularly in the area of the political economy dimensions of tourism governance. He has so far successfully graduated more than 10 PhDs and 20 M.Phil. holders some of whom have attained professorial rank. His research interests focus on Tourism safety/security, Governance, the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and Destination Management.


Prof Boakye was born in Takoradi and had portions of his basic education in the United Kingdom  and University Primary School, Cape Coast. He entered St Augustine’s College in 1987 where he attained his Ordinary Level (1992) and Advanced Level (1994) in the General Arts Programme majoring in Economics, Geography and French. Between 1995 and 1996 he acquired both the Diplome de Langue  (DL) and Diplome D’etudes Francaise (DELF 1er degree) at Alliance Francaise in Accra. In 1996, he gained admission at the University of Cape Coast to read for the newly-introduced B.SC Tourism Programme from which he duly graduated with a First Class in 1999.  He received an MPhil Tourism in (2003), a Postgraduate Certificate in Hospitality Operations from the Georgia State University, Atlanta in 2004 and a PhD  in Tourism Management from the University of Cape Coast in 2008 and recently, undertook a certificate in Leadership in 2021. 

Working Life

After working as a visitor reception official at the Kakum National Park for his post-graduation national service and a one-year stint with an Accra-based research firm thereafter, Prof Boakye joined  the University of Cape Coast as a Senior Research Assistant in 2002 at the then Department of Geography and Tourism Management. He was appointed Lecturer in 2004, promoted Senior Lecturer in 2009, Associate Professor in 2013 and Professor in 2017.  In September 2012, he served as a visiting Senior Fulbright Scholar at the University of South Florida in the United States of America.

Prof Boakye has since his appointment in 2004 served on numerous boards, committees and adhoc committees in the University of Cape Coast in various capacities as Chairman, Secretary or Member. He currently serves as Chairperson, University-wide Regionalization Strategy Committee, UCC; Chairperson, Internationalization and Institutional Ranking Committee, UCC, Chair, Faculty of Social Sciences Adhoc Committee on Work Load for academic senior members. He was also Chair, Academic Board subcommittee on review of Postdoctoral Policy.  He has variously served as member on various boards such as Confucius Institute, College of Education Studies Board; 2018-2022 Strategic Plan Committee, College of Humanities and Legal Studies Board; Faculty of Social Sciences Appointments and Promotions Board. Atta Mills Presidential Library Committee; Graduate School Board, Adhoc Committee on  Plagiarism Policy; Team lead of Committee that reviewed the UCC Collegiate Implementation Roadmap; Member, Faculty of Social Sciences Board; Hall Tutor, Atlantic Hall, Team leader, Academic Management Committee subcommittee  on Monitoring and Evaluation of the Centre for Continuing Education; Member, Examination Malpractices Investigation Committee, Faculty of Social Sciences; Member, Campus Safety and Security Committee; Member, Academic Management Committee; Member, School of Agriculture Board; Sandwich Studies Coordinator, Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management; Postgraduate Studies Coordinator, Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management; Member (and variously Chair) Rapporteuring Team, Annual Micro Finance Conferences organized by the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Cape Coast.  Between 2014 and 2018 Prof Boakye was Editor in Chief, Oguaa Journal of Social Sciences.

Administrative Positions

Prof Boakye was appointed Head, Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management from 2016-2019 and also Vice Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences (January- July, 2019) and is currently the Dean of International Relations, University of Cape Coast.

External engagements

Over the period Prof Boakye has provided technical advice and consultancy service for various clients such as the Government of Ghana, United Nations Development Programme, Cities Alliance, Ghana Heritage Conservation Trust, Ghana Statistical Service, National Commission for Technical and Vocational Education and Training;  Komenda Eguafo Edina Abirem Municipal Assembly, Eguafo Traditional Council to mention a few. He serves as external assessor/examiner for numerous Universities in Ghana some of which include Koforidua Technical University, Cape Coast Technical University, Ho Technical University, Durban University of Technology, South Africa, University of Zambia, Zambia to mention a few. He has also supervised theses from University of Girona, Spain.

He is currently a member of the National Standing Committee Private Public Partnership Forum in Tourism, the National Tourism Satellite Accounting Committee; and  Advisory  Board of the Tour Operators Union, Ghana.

Prof Boakye is the CEO of RoamGhana a multiple award winning Travel and Tour Operations Company and the Tourism Research and Advocacy Centre (TRAC).

He is married to Faustina and they have two children, Nyamedor and Asempa.  He worships at the University Interdenominational Church (UIC) University of Cape Coast.

Topic: Tourism as a vehicle for Ghana’s development: Mirage, miracle or myth?


In spite of its undoubted acclaim as a viable vehicle for  economic development,  tourism’s benefits continue to largely elude African countries, thus becoming a mirage. We must look beyond the oft-repeated and rather uni-dimensional reasons of contextual differences and north-south power discrepancies to find answers to this underperformance. Using a series of vignettes based on true life stories of  my journey of learning, tourism scholarly work and practice, I seek to demonstrate that Ghana’s  inability to maximize its developmental benefits from tourism stems largely from three key factors:  One, a poor understanding and conceptualization of what tourism is or should be; two, disorganized approach to tourism development hoping for a miracle, and, three, a level  of socio-economic growth so  low that it circumscribes the abilities of tourism to act as an agent of  development, thereby disabusing the myth about tourism’s automatic developmental properties.

I suggest that for tourism to be beneficial to Ghana, there must firstly  be intentionality at the highest level of government through the establishment of a cabinet subcommittee with the appropriate membership. Secondly, it is also imperative to pursue integrated development of tourism at the local level and, finally,  build capacity of residents in host communities to become gainful  participants in the business of  providing for the needs of the visitors.