Multiple Use Management Preferences by Visitors with Differing Leisure Identity Salience
Keywords:indirect and direct management, visitor input, freedom, access, leisure identity salience
AbstractMultiple use area management is of particular interest to both outdoor and urban planners due to an increase in and diversity of users. These areas pose special management challenges due to the diverse and potential conflicting interests involved. Diverse users are frequently excluded from management decisions, however. Further, when visitor input is solicited, it is typically in response to researcher driven. management options. In addition, visitors are often artificially segmented by activity type alone, discounting participation in multiple activities or related identities. This exploratory paper openly assesses visitors' management preferences for multiple use areas and then addresses potential differences according to their leisure identity salience (LIS). LIS is suggested as a way to segment visitors because it goes beyond activity style and measures the personal and social meanings of an activity with a brief scale. Findings may provide additional insight for managers regarding visitor management preferences, as well as indications of how useful the LIS is as a segmentation tool. Twenty respondents, selected fi·om an onsite survey of 369 recreationists and stratified by LIS and gender, participated in qualitative interviews focused on management preferences for multiple use areas. Results indicate overall positive responses to indirect management techniques, concerns about access and regulations, as well as some differences in preferences by LIS. Specifically, open inquiry results found education and separation mentioned most frequently by respondents. Differences by LIS did emerge with high LIS interviewees more frequently mentioning education and site modification and low LIS separation. In direct responses to five commonly employed management techniques, education and separation emerged as most preferred. Joint planning received favorable responses as well. Permanent prevention from use and regulation, however, elicited more negative responses from participants. Therefore, managers are encouraged to employ educational techniques whenever possible in managing multiple use areas. When new areas or changes to existing areas are suggested, well advertised joint planning efforts are encouraged. Separation, interviewees suggested, is best limited to new or newly opened areas as prevention from use appeared to impinge the most on recreationists' freedoms.
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