Intangible heritage and ecotourism: a proposal around artisanal fishing

Carolina Clark, Silvina Elías


The present work analyzes the process of creation, transmission and preservation of the traditional knowledge of a group of fishermen in a small town called Villa del Mar, located in the southwest of Buenos Aires Province in Argentina. The physical conditions make this area extremely interesting from the point of view of biological diversity and productivity. Its wetland provides nesting, breeding, shelter and feeding areas to migratory and threatened species of invertebrates, fish, birds and marine mammals. The tradition of the town, which integrates the identity and cultural heritage of the community linked to artisanal fishing techniques, is in risk of disappearance and it can be put into value through ecotourism activities that allow not only the rescue and the transmission of such traditional knowledge but also the generation of additional income. In this sense, the article will discuss potential ecotourism proposals and their implications in terms of identity, sustainability and local development. The results of the study show that the non-formal knowledge, developed through practice and direct observation in the natural environment, becomes a patrimonial asset that can acquire new uses, among them the implementation of ecotourism activities, generating positive impacts for the different involved actors. In relation to visitors, these activities, promote an increasing awareness of the value of heritage, fostering responsible attitudes regarding their conservation. With respect to host communities, when the activities are managed in a participative and conscious way they can become a source of alternative income. Likewise, the enhancement of cultural heritage by the community itself can contribute to its appropriation and preservation and to the reaffirmation of their identity. 


Traditional Knowledge - Cultural Heritage - Identity - Local Development – Ecotourism

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