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Keywords:

  • Sustainable tourism;
  • interactive governance;
  • natural resource management;
  • marine angling tourism;
  • recreational fisheries

Abstract

This paper presents empirical data from a comparison of the management strategies governing marine angling tourism (MAT) in Norway and Iceland. Marine angling tourism has been steadily growing in popularity in the coastal fjord communities of Norway and Iceland over the last several years, and as regulations stand now, MAT is consumptive wildlife tourism, dependent on the extraction of living marine resources. Iceland's management system is based on the individual transferable quota (ITQ) and total allowable catch (TAC) management policies, designed for the commercial fishing fleet. These policies can be considered too restrictive with regard to laws and regulations for the appropriate management of MAT; however, Iceland found a way to compensate for this through active stakeholder participation which includes mutual and open communication, and actively engaging feedback loops which empirically demonstrates how interactive governance could work in practice. Norway's system gives more freedom to tourists, and the consequences of this impact both the vulnerable fjord stocks and the local communities. Findings suggest that the environmental and socio-cultural sustainability of MAT requires a complex socio-ecological systems perspective, with interactive governance strategies leading management policies. Sustainability requires that a management strategy not only focus on the economic aspects; priority must also be given to minimizing multi-stakeholder conflicts and providing sufficient resource data to protect vulnerable fish stocks.