The Pacific coast of Colombia has some of the most extensive mangrove forests in South America. As an isolated region and one of the country's poorest, coastal communities rely on fishing as a main source of animal protein and income. In an attempt to reverse declining trends of fisheries resources, in 2008, an Exclusive Zone of Artisanal Fishing closed to industrial fishing, was established by stakeholders in the Northern Chocó region. Here we present a case study to investigate the effects of this area-based management on fisheries productivity and catch composition.
Rural communities in Solomon Islands rely heavily on coastal fisheries for food and income. However, coral reefs, mangroves and seagrass are degrading in many areas because of overharvesting, pollution and unsustainable land-use activities such as logging. The degradation of coastal fisheries has big implications for the food security and livelihoods of rural communities. The national government recognizes the importance of coastal fisheries and aims to ensure that 50 percent of coastal areas are sustainably managed by 2020.
Community-based fisheries management (CBFM) is held up as one of the most promising approaches for securing sustainable small-scale fisheries. Yet, the complex features that shape CBFM outcomes remain inadequately understood. In part, this stems from the fact that few community-based projects meet the data requirements for formal impact evaluations. Given this context, diagnostic approaches are increasingly seen as a frontier for strengthening CBFM analysis and securing small-scale fisheries sustainability.
Coastal fisheries provide staple food and sources of livelihood in Pacific Island countries, and securing a sustainable supply is recognised as a critical priority for nutrition security. This study sought to better understand the role of fish for Pacific Island communities during disasters and in disaster recovery. To evaluate community impacts and responses after natural disasters, focus group discussions were held with men and women groups at ten sites across Shefa, Tafea, Malampa and Sanma provinces in Vanuatu.
Concerns about the sustainability of small-scale fisheries, and the equitable distribution of fisheries benefits, are wide-spread within government agencies, non-government organizations, and rural fishing communities throughout Pacific Island Countries and Territories. Addressing these concerns was given renewed impetus in recent years with the completion and adoption of the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries (SSF Guidelines). This global document enters a complex policy landscape within the Pacific region.
With the recent endorsement of two supra-national policies — the New Song and the Small-Scale Fisheries Guidelines -- Pacific Island countries and territories are being called on to lead the process of national implementation and monitoring to improve socioeconomic and environmental conditions in coastal fisheries and fishing communities. To aid this effort, we compare these policies on three levels -- visions, guiding principles and recommendations -- to determine if a harmonised approach to implementing these two policies is possible.
In this chapter, the authors use the case of community-based resource management in the Solomon Islands to contribute a critical social science perspective on navigating social transformations towards sustainability.
Poverty alleviation and resource governance are inextricably related. Mainstream resource management has been typically criticized by social scientists for the inherent power imbalances between fishery managers and small-scale fishing communities. Yet, while a number of mechanisms of collective action to address these power imbalances have been developed, they remain undertheorized.
Coastal communities within small island developing states are typically highly dependent on fisheries and other natural resource-based livelihoods. However, specialisation as a ‘fisher’ is rare compared to diverse livelihoods that can be adapted as opportunities and challenges emerge. Understanding this dynamic “livelihood landscape” is important for improving governance and livelihood opportunities associated with natural resources.
Sustainability science suggests a core set of factors that foster significant change in governance, with leaders and entrepreneurs often identified as the main instigators. Discussions of leadership in governance transformations often focus on key charismatic people, underplaying contestation and the complex landscape of leadership. We present an empirical study that uses a participatory network mapping approach to provide a broader examination of leadership in integrated conservation and development.