Dr Tracey Phillips


Conservation through Sustainable Development


I offer customized services, introductory training workshops, and ongoing strategic guidance and support for individuals, projects and organizations working to restore, protect or sustainably use natural and cultural resources. I work in person, remotely and online. I also work in association with Gondwana Alive, a non-profit company, to raise funds to help those who need support but cannot afford it. 

“I have integrated what I have learned over these 25 years of study and development practice into a mentorship programme which instils simple day to day practices that my experience suggests are basic building blocks for sustainable livelihood development.”

Tracey Phillips

Swiss Ubuntu Foundation

“… your work and Chris’ input are what bankers call ‘triple A’, not even to mention the very rewarding working relationships.”

!Khwa ttu Project – Indigineous San Heritage, Culture and Education.



UN Adaptation Fund

“…in recognition of your commitment and valuable participation in the Community Adaptation Small Grants Facility”  

SGF award, Department of Environmental Affairs, South African National Biodiversity Institute and UN Adaptation Fund, 2018

Presidential Jobs Fund

“Small but impactful”

Groen Sebenza award ceremony, Dr Tanya Abrahamse, then CEO South African National Biodiversity Institute, 2015


My Story

Dr Tracey Phillips is passionate about nature, happiest exploring wild paths, most motivated exploring ways for people to thrive in harmony with nature.

She studied zoology, specializing in coastal ecology – where land, life and water meet. This gave her an understanding of natural systems and where people fit into those systems.

For 25 years Tracey has used her understanding of natural systems to explore sustainable livelihoods…

Years Experience




My Education

Rhodes university


Awarded an Honours degree in Zoology in 1987 and a PhD in Zoology – specializing in coastal ecology – in 1994.


University of cape town


Awarded a BSc degree in zoology, including marine biology in 3rd year.

My Experience

Run 2 for profit and 2 non-profit enterprises. Implemented over 100 projects in over 40 communities in 4 regions (South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Madagascar). Managed up to 300 project staff, 400 trainees and R8 million in budget at one time. Trained over 1000 people in communities spread over 2000km.



At first individually and then in association with Gondwana Alive, I was contracted by the Swiss Ubuntu Foundation and !Khwa ttu to provide strategic guidance, capacity building and support to the !Khwa ttu San Culture & Education Centre and related heritage, culture, tourism, conservation and livelihood projects.

 biodiversity – human capital development & CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION


On behalf of Gondwana Alive I assisted with programme steering, and undertook project leadership, mentorship and training to support the Department of Environmental Affairs, South African National Biodiversity Institute and over 40 other Government, NGO, public, private, community and institutional partners – to implement “Groen Sebenza”,  a green jobs mentorship project financed by the SA Presidential Jobs Fund, and a “Land & Livestock Adaptation” project financed by the UN Adaptation Fund.




Individually and then in association with Gondwana Alive, I assisted with a feasibility study, secured financing and mentored development of a network of 5 slack-packing trails in support of sustainable development through the UN “Man & Biosphere” programme, with financing from the Development Bank of Southern Africa, Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve and SA National Lottery.

My Featured Works


Indigenous led development

‘Hear it from the San’ video


Stemming the Sixth Extinction

‘Hear it from John Anderson’ video


Land, Livestock & Livelihoods

‘Hear it from Tracey Phillips & Jozua Lambrechts’ video


Mentorship & Training

‘Hear it from intern, Mandlakazi Mgwebi’

My Mission

“To guide and support pivotal role players from all walks of life, who in turn guide and support others creating a social movement toward healthy people and planet”

A long-term Theory of Change:

  • Land degradation, loss of biodiversity and climate change are a conservation / socio-economic threat and opportunity;
  • A country’s most marginalized groups (such as indigenous San) are the most vulnerable to land degradation, biodiversity loss and climate change;
  • Empowering these groups to restore land and biodiversity and adapt to climate change is important for inclusive development.
  • Indigenous People have valuable knowledge to share and a role to play in conservation and climate action and promoting sustainable development.

My Blog

Earth Alive Corridors – Towards 7 Billion Earth Stewards April 5, 2019  

Humanity didn’t make the Earth but we do need to look after it…

Get In Touch

I live in Cape Town, South Africa in the small village of Scarborough near the tip of the African continent. If you would like to connect please contact me via email on traceyphi@gmail.com or tracey@gondwanaalive.org , or use the contact form below.

You can also follow me and Gondwana Alive on Facebook and Instagram.

1 + 3 =




Mon – Fri: 9am – 5pm