Digital monitoring of small-scale fisheries in Timor-Leste: An impact assessment
Digital tools and technologies are transforming the way we monitor and manage food systems and natural resources, but to date there is scant credible collection and analysis of evidence of their impacts on wellbeing, environmental sustainability, and broader goods and services. The development of information communication technologies (ICTs) has a crucial role to play in the timely provision of information to guide management and investment decisions by small-scale fisheries stakeholders, from coastal fishers to government officials. The implementation of PeskAAS in Timor-Leste is one such attempt. We sought to co-design and roll out a system to collect and analyse fisheries data in near-real-time with the aim to: 1) strengthen sustainable fisheries resource management in Timor-Leste; 2) promote improved collaboration and communication between fisheries stakeholders; and 3)identify new opportunities to enhance fish-based livelihoods and food systems transformation in Timor-Leste. This study aimed to assess the progress made towards these goals since 2016, through different pathways since the establishment and iterative development of PeskAAS. Using targeted interviews we undertook a survey of respondents in key stakeholder groups: fishers, community enumerators, private sector, NGOs and external agencies, municipal fisheries officers, and national government.