Women’s empowerment in aquaculture: Two case studies from Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a global leader in inland fish production and has been ranked as the fifth largest producer of aquaculture food fish in the world. The fisheries sector, including aquaculture, provides employment to 17.8 million people, out of which women constitute 1.4 million. The shrimp industry alone employs over one million people in its processing factories, out of which 88.64 percent are women. While women play a significant role in aquaculture production in Bangladesh, their contributions remain under-reported. While there is some empirical information regarding women’s roles in and outcomes from aquaculture in Bangladesh, much of it is project-based (regarding homestead aquaculture) or worker’s rights-based (regarding shrimp factory employment). More fundamentally, there is a dearth of information regarding women’s empowerment in relation to aquaculture, and the associated enabling and constraining factors. This study addresses this gap by exploring women’s empowerment in aquaculture in Bangladesh, including positive outcomes and limitations.


Choudhury, A., McDougall, C., Rajaratnam, S., Park, C.M.Y. (2017)
Rome, Italy: Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nation ; Penang, Malaysia: WorldFish