Tropical Geography ›› 2021, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (4): 734-745.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.003369

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Spatial Distribution and Polycentric Governance of Recreational Fishery Resources in the United States: A Case Study of Florida

Juan Wanga,b(), Kexin Wanga(), Chen Yangb   

  1. a.School of Management, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266100, China
    b.Institute of Marine Development, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266100, China
  • Received:2021-01-15 Revised:2021-04-11 Online:2021-08-13 Published:2021-08-13
  • Contact: Kexin Wang;


Recreational fishery is one of the most popular outdoor activities in the United States. During its development, it has created huge economic and social benefits for the United States and formed a governance mechanism with polycentric participation. Based on the analysis of the current development of recreational fisheries in the United States, this study used the nearest neighbor index, buffer analysis, Tyson polygon and related dimension measurements to spatially analyze the distribution characteristics of recreational fishery resources in Florida. The results demonstrated that the recreational fisheries in the United States have formed a development pattern with fresh water as the mainstay and saltwater as the supplement. Among them, the recreational fishery resources in Florida are characterized by agglomeration and uneven distribution. More precisely, 80% of the recreational fishing sites are located within 20 km of the coastline and close to each other. In its long course of historical development, the United States has formed a flexible power operation mechanism, featuring decentralization and cooperation between the central government and local governments. Large areas scattered, small regional agglomeration spatial patterns have been used to adapt to the large area, and state governments, industry associations, and other bodies have created the main body participation of the polycentric governance mechanism to match the market characteristics of main body participation of the federal government. One of the purposes of polycentric governance is to improve management efficiency. The vast geographic area of the United States and the scattered pattern of large areas of recreational fishery resources increase the cost of management resource allocation and scheduling. Therefore, flexible, multi-level governance models are needed to improve governance effectiveness. Another goal of polycentric governance is to meet the distinctive needs of diverse audiences and provide diversified public services. The characteristics of the recreational fisheries market in the United States, where freshwater is the mainstay and saltwater is supplemented, and the distribution pattern of 'small areas gather, large areas disperse' require multiple governance entities to coordinate their overall development of recreational fisheries, while considering local development needs and characteristics. Accordingly, recreational fisheries in the region are developed to reduce the pressure on the local environment and improve the coordinated development capabilities of related industries. In view of this, this article addresses the problems of China's recreational fisheries and proposes to promote recreational fishery scientific management and high-quality development using a 'from bottom to top' polycentric governance mechanism, the establishment of a service-oriented government, the flexible empowerment of industry associations, and the integration and innovation of recreational fishery enterprises.

Key words: recreational fisheries, spatial analysis, polycentric governance, the United States

CLC Number: 

  • F326.4