Regulation and innovation: The case of the pelagic fisheries sector in Norway. A theoretical and methodological approach for an empirical analysis

Type/nr A61/05
Skrevet av Stig-Erik Jakobsen and Bernt Aarset
Within the mainstream of studies of industrial innovations, the focus has primarily been at parameters such as firm size, equity, networks and clustering. Regulation has traditionally been regarded as the antagonism to innovation where removal of regulations has been seen as a condition for innovations. In this paper we take the opposite stance, and emphasise the interconnection between political regulation and the capability to innovate. Here we choose to analyse regulations as arrangements that can facilitate as well as restrict innovations.

The pelagic sector within the Norwegian fisheries has increased their share of the total value landed fish in the industry from around 25 % in 1993 to about 40 % in the fist part of this century. The pelagic fleet target mainly species such as marcel, herring and capelin. The sector comprises a relatively homogenous fleet of large purse-seiners and smaller coastal seiners, and a relatively diversified processing industry.

Over the past decade the industry has been through huge transformations. There have also been significant changes in the political regulation of the industry. The sector has traditionally produced bulk products (meal and oil), but now however, the industry produce for a consumer market. This implies a huge raise in per kilo value, but also that the industry is confronted with a new set of regulations. How have the rules and directives trickled down in the industry, and what has been the industry’s response?

Språk Skrevet på engelsk