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Tourism training for fishermen - FLAG Northern & Eastern Lapland - FI

This project offered an integrated package of training courses, tailor made for fishermen who wanted to diversify into tourism.



The number of professional fishermen in Sodankylä, Finland, has halved since the early 2000s and the remaining 20 fishermen were eager to find ways to complement their income by diversifying into tourism. However, they lacked the skills and licenses to make this a reality. Following discussions with their local FLAG, a group of specialists was brought together to develop and deliver a tailor made training package. This included courses and exams in safety issues as well as study visits to tourism companies,allowing fishermen to forge contacts with other tourism operators and learn from experts in the field. A further 10 days of training focused on product development, pricing and customer service and was complemented by seven days of personalised study and guidance.


Key lessons

> Relevance to FARNET themes: Diversification, training, bottom-up principal.

> Results: This project has equipped 14 of the 20 local fishermen with the qualifications, safety certificates and skills they need to develop and offer a successful tourist package. Between them, they have developed a total of seven marketable products for five fishermen and the nearest big tourist resort ( has started to market winter net fishing trips and summer river fishing trips with the local professional fishermen.The project also led to the organization of further training courses at the request of participating fishermen.

> Transferability: Training of some form is a vital component of most local development strategies. This project offers FLAGs a good example of how training can be tailored to meet a concrete need in a given territory, and how such training can lead to tangible economic gains.

> Final Comment: This is an excellent example of local ideas being put into action with the support of the local FLAG. At the initiative of the fishermen, the FLAG structured and coordinated the ideas (through questionnaires and meetings) of fishermen, local authority representatives and tourism professionals in order to design a targeted training programme and establish durable cooperation between the relevant actors.

Total cost and EFF contribution

Total Project cost: €78 000

  • FLAG contribution: €30 186
  • National co-financing: €40 014
  • Other/ Private: €7 800

Project information

Title: Training project for fishermen in pesca-tourism

Duration: (planning, carrying out the training, report and final payments)

July 2009 – Feb 2011

Case study date: December 2011

Project promoter: Sodankylä Municipality

Ms Marjo Helenius (advisor of tourism development)

marjo.helenius (at)

+358 40 56 56 967

Further project information

Northern & Eastern Lapland FLAG factsheet