Symposium Information

Background and Goals

This symposium will provide a forum for scholars, fishery managers, fishing families, and others to explore the human dimensions of fishery systems and growing need to include social science research in policy processes. It will be a place for sharing what we have learned about the opportunities and constraints that fishing people in northern countries encounter in a time of significant environmental, social, and economic change.

We welcome diverse panels and presentations that address sources and effects of external impacts on fishing people and communities across northern countries—how impacts vary, who they affect, and strategies or characteristics of northern people that make them more or less adaptable to change. Seeking to understand how we more fully characterize the people and places that depend on the sea in the North, we will collectively investigate how diversity in values and livelihoods can be best incorporated into management processes.


The registration desk will be open from 5:00 to 7:00 pm on Tuesday, September 13, and at 7:10 a.m. on Wednesday, September 14, for you to pick up your name badge and symposium materials. Presentations will begin on Wednesday morning with a keynote talk by Clare Swan and Sasha Lindgren, Kenai Peninsula Dena'ina Elders, and will run through early afternoon on Saturday, September 17. Evening receptions will be held on Wednesday and Friday, with a reading of poetry, fiction and nonfiction at Snow City Cafe on Thursday evening. The poster session will be held Wednesday evening during the reception. Meals will be on your own.

Oral presentations and posters addressing Fishing People of the North will be presented within the following themes and panels:

Theme 1: Human-Environment Relationships

  1. Environmental and Climate Change and Commercial Fisheries
  2. Fisheries as Community

Theme 2: Fishing Communities in Transition

  1. Reconsidering the Coastal Community in the 21st Century
  2. Community Activism
  3. Forgone Harvests: Exploring New Opportunities for Community-Based Fisheries
  4. Experiences with Fisheries Enclosure

Theme 3: Indigenous and Rural Knowledge and Communities

  1. Using Local and Traditional Knowledge to Document Environmental Change and Human Resilience
  2. Indigenous Mapping and Local Knowledge
  3. Infusing Traditional Indigenous Practices into Contemporary Fishery Management

Theme 4: Governance and Management Issues in the North

  1. Reimaging Fisheries Governance
  2. Local Institutions, Risk, and Resilience

Theme 5: Celebrating the Lives of Fishing Peoples
An evening of fishing prose and poetry and a private tour of the Bristol Bay Sailing for Salmon exhibit at the Anchorage Museum will be part of this theme.

Events held during the symposium

Download the abstract book [PDF; 979KB] for further details on the presentations.

The program will be updated as necessary until the time of the meeting.

The official language of the symposium is English. Participants needing interpretation or translation services should provide their own, and notify the symposium coordinator.

Invited Speakers

The following experts will give invited talks at the symposium.

Symposium keynote speakers
Theme 1: Human-Environment Relationships
Theme 2: Fishing Communities in Transition
Theme 3: Indigenous and Rural Knowledge and Communities
Theme 4: Governance and Management Issues in the North
State Perspective


Alaska Sea Grant will publish a peer-reviewed proceedings, including full papers based on oral and poster presentations, soon after the symposium. Members of the steering committee will serve as editors for the symposium proceedings. Full manuscripts are due by September 17, 2011; see manuscript guidelines [PDF; 186 KB] for information on how to prepare submissions. Please submit electronic copy to Sue Keller.

Location and Facilities

All meeting sessions will be held at the Hilton Downtown Anchorage Hotel. The Hilton offers pleasant accommodations with high speed Internet in the guest rooms and complimentary wireless Internet in the lobby. Guest amenities include a café, dining, business center, fitness room, and swimming pool. Most guest rooms have great views of mountains or Cook Inlet.

Guest rooms will be available at the special meeting rate of $139 per night single or double occupancy plus 12% bed tax. For the special meeting rate, reservations must be made directly with the hotel by August 14, 2011; mention the conference name Fishing People of the North to reserve the special rate. This rate extends three days prior to and three days after the meeting dates.

Hilton Downtown Anchorage Hotel
500 West 3rd Ave.
Anchorage, AK 99501

Visitor Information

For information on sightseeing opportunities and attractions, please see the following:


The registration fee for the symposium is $200.00 US ($150 student) if paid on or before August 14, 2011. The late registration fee will be $250.00 ($200 student) after August 14. The fee covers break refreshments daily, a catered reception on September 14, symposium materials, and published proceedings. You are urged to register and pay your fees in advance so that adequate materials are available.

Steering Committee


Symposium Contact Information

Courtney Carothers
School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Phone: 907-474-5329