The importance of qualitative social research for effective fisheries management

Over recent decades it has become widely accepted that managing fisheries resources means managing human behaviour, and so understanding social and economic dynamics is just as important as understanding species biology and ecology. Until recently, fisheries managers and researchers have struggled to develop effective methods and data for social and economic analysis that can integrate with the predominantly biological approaches to fisheries management. The field is now growing fast, however, and globally, researchers are developing and testing new methods.

Gender relations and improved technologies in small household ponds in Bangladesh: Rolling out novel learning approaches

Gender-transformative engagement in the management of household ponds in Bangladesh for improved fish production relies on working with the complexities of gender relations in combination with a readiness by formally-trained scientists to allow women and men farmers to "follow the technology". Innovative methodologies for technology development and dissemination need to focus on promoting farmer adaptive capacity and enabling farmers to take charge of their own learning. This is not a gender-neutral process.

Gender and household decision-making in a Lao Village: implications for livelihoods in hydropower development

Hydropower development with concomitant changes in water and land regimes often results in livelihood transformation of affected people, entailing changes in intra-household decision-making upon which livelihood strategies are based. Economic factors underlying gender dimensions of household decision-making have been studied rigorously since the 1970s. However, empirical data on gender and decision-making within households, needed for evidence-based action, remain scarce. This is more so in hydropower contexts.

Farmer participatory procedures for managing and monitoring sustainable farming systems

This paper aims to devise a farmer participatory method that not only improves farmer management of natural resources, but also monitors the impact of improvements. This assessment is made in terms of: economic efficiency, biological material recycling, species biodiversity and material input-output balance. Results suggest that high performance in all indicators can occur simultaneously and that economic loss from crop failure does not jeopardise performance in biodiversity and recycling.

Establishing freshwater protected areas to protect biodiversity and improve food security in the Philippines

This paper describes the efforts to establish a network of community-conserved areas in the municipality of San Mariano on Luzon, with the dual aim to protect the Philippine crocodile and to improve inland fisheries. The necessary steps to establish a community-conserved area are summarized, and their sustainability assessed.

Coping with the Double Crisis: Lake Chilwa Recession and the Great Depression on Chisi Island in Colonial Malawi, 1930–1935

During the 1930s, people in the Lake Chilwa Basin in Malawi had to cope with both the drying up of Lake Chilwa and the global economic depression. We chose to describe this confluence on Chisi Island as the ‘double crisis,’ and it may at first glance seem obvious, but on examination becomes quite complex. In the case of the Lake Chilwa, the colonial administration introduced cotton production on the dry lake bed to boost the economy of Nyasaland in the face of the economic depression. However, the people of Chisi Island successfully resisted cotton farming.

Aquatic product consumption patterns and perceptions among the Chinese middle class

The Chinese market for aquatic products is the largest in the world, and growing rapidly. An increasingly large proportion of Chinese aquatic product consumption is coming from imported sources, making the market of high significance not only for stakeholders in China, but from around the world. Yet little is understood about the key characteristics of this market. In this paper we surveyed 300 middle-class urban consumers of aquatic products in Beijing and Shanghai about patterns of aquatic product consumption and attitudes towards sustainability.

Aquaculture big numbers

This research project seeks to: provide baseline information on the present status of the aquaculture sector from a human development perspective; identify the types and numbers of people employed by the sector; and explore the role of aquaculture in providing social and economic services at a global level, with a particular emphasis on small-scale stakeholders. The research findings presented here are based on a global synthesis of information from various sources and 9 country case studies in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Aquaculture and sustainability through integrated resources management

Aquaculture In developing countries can improve the sustainability of small-scale farms provided that It is fully integrated with other enterprises and household activities so as to allow farm families and communities to manage their natural resources effectively. This requires the consideration of pond management and fish husbandry as means to a variety of ends (water storage, soil conservation and fertility, integrated pest management, etc.), not just production of fish.

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