Tourism development strategy or just brown signage?: Comparing road administration policies and designation procedures for official tourism routes in two Scandinavian countries

Publisher's full text
Hans Antonson
Jens Kr. Steem Jacobsen

This comparative study maps and explores planning and designation of official tourism, routes in two countries with quite similar planning traditions, responding to a deficiency in research, on tourism route planning and development.

Based on personal semi-structured interviews with, public road planners and managers in Norway and Sweden, the paper illuminates establishment and, management of official tourism routes, with an emphasis on overall strategies, funding, and, stakeholder involvement.

Results show that public road administration route planning procedures in, the two countries are quite different. In Norway, a top-down principle is basically employed, concerning initiatives and designation of routes.

In Sweden, the principle is one of muddling through, giving street-level planners more opportunities for individual influence on route planning. Funding for, road stretches included in the Norwegian national route programme is earmarked, whereas Swedish, routes are financed from ordinary appropriations to the regional road administrations.

In Norway, regular follow-up studies such as road user surveys are conducted. In Sweden, a dearth of, documentation of tourist interests and route assessments seemingly makes route development, susceptible in relation to regional road administrations' economic priorities.

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