Sustainable Fisheries

Special Collection

Worldwide, small-scale coastal fisheries contribute significantly to providing food, employment, and incomes to many very poor people. But these same fisheries, and the ecosystems upon which they rely, are under increasing threat from a combination of climate change, pollution, over-fishing, and the exploitation of resources.


Fisheries management has been a major component in trying to address some of these issues, but with limited global success. The potential of fisheries, if managed well, is considerable but what form that potential will take will depend on how and why fisheries are managed.


This collection of reports and presentations explores just this question, describing some of the challenges faced by small-scale fisheries worldwide and their efforts to address these challenges and improve the health and well-being of the people who are dependent on these threatened environments.


The collection brings together the "grey literature" of the field, valuable work that is not readily available through academic journals and databases but is instead spread across dozens of organizational websites. This set of reports was initially identified as part of a synthesis review of key lessons commissioned by the Rockefeller Foundation's Program on Oceans and Fisheries. We are pleased to make it more easily available for others to use and build on and encourage researchers and practitioners to add relevant work to the collection.

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Gender and Change in the Spotlight: Report on the 4th Global Symposium on Gender in Aquaculture and Fisheries

July 16, 2013

Fishery changes, caused by modernization and mechanization, globalization and environmental disasters, shift the working spaces, continually destroy and create jobs and livelihoods, and bring greater overlaps in women's and men's roles in the household, factory and market place. This report puts the spotlight on key results and discussion presented at GAF4 (4th Global Symposium on Gender in Aquaculture and Fisheries) from May 1-3, 2013 in Seoul, Korea. 28 oral presentations, one poster and four mini-workshops/panels were given. The report highlights four major threads of GAF4: (1) the gendered impacts of fishery sector change, (2) gender assets and roles, (3) challenges and tools to meet future needs, and (3) the road to mobilization to achieve gender equality in aquaculture and fisheries. Out of these threads, researchers and grass roots representatives will conclude that they need to suspend pre-conceived ideas about gender roles and relationships because many of these are in flux. Researchers need to develop further and make better use of rigorous qualitative social science research methods. Through their participatory nature and to ensure ethical approaches, such methods will bring researchers and grassroots participants closer, which is an essential step in mobilizing support for gender equality.