We use global value chain (GVC) theory to understand governance of Vietnam’s shrimp farming industry. We describe this GVC as buyer-driven with important food safety standards imposed by governments of importing countries and new certification systems promoted by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Governance relations are clear between governments in importing countries and Vietnam, and between importers and NGOs. Governance relations become more fragmented further down the chain where large numbers of small-scale producers and traders operate.
Research by the authors examined the impacts of governmental and non-governmental standards on the ability of seafood producers and processors in Vietnam to access export markets. The Vietnamese government plays an important role in the governance of international seafood trade, but importing nations establish food safety standards and NGOs have also become involved. To assure market access, exporters must respond to buyers and certification systems that buyers adopt.
Aquatic agricultural systems in developing countries face increasing competition from multiple stakeholders over rights to access and use natural resources, land, water, wetlands, and fisheries, essential to rural livelihoods. A key implication is the need to strengthen governance to enable equitable decision making amidst competition that spans sectors and scales, building capacities for resilience, and for transformations in institutions that perpetuate poverty.
The Barotse floodplain is an ecosystem characterized by a paradox of widespread poverty amidst high ecological and agricultural potential. The CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems (AAS) seeks to address this paradox on the assumption that the rural poor have the potential to transform their lives using the aquatic resources in their environment. Understanding the conditions for natural resources use and management is critical for a program that seeks to transform the livelihoods of households dependent on natural resources.
Rice field fisheries refer to the capture of wild fish and other aquatic animals from flooded rice field agroecosystems and their supporting infrastructure, such as canals, channels, streams and other bodies of water. Central to maintaining fish productivity in rice fields is a designated conservation area known as a community fish refuge (CFR) that connects to rice fields to form an area known as the zone of influence.
This meeting, the second national Fisheries Governance Dialogue, aimed to help stakeholders in the fisheries sector generate a shared understanding of critical lessons and pathways for fisheries co-management success in Ghana. This was a direct response to the call from both fisheries communities and the government of Ghana for a radical change from the way fisheries resources are currently being managed.
The Third National Fisheries Governance Dialogue was a direct follow up on the Second National Fisheries Governance Dialogue held in Elmina in April 2012. It was agreed at the Second dialogue that co-management was the way forward for sustaining Ghana's fisheries and that its success would depend on a supportive legal framework.
The CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems (AAS) supports resource-poor women and men to overcome poverty, malnutrition and food insecurity by bringing science to bear on these challenges. Social and gender issues, which restrict women and men, adversely impact development in the aquatic agricultural systems. AAS has embraced gender-transformative approaches (GTA) to achieve its goals. Broad buy-in is needed to effectively integrate GTA into research programming and organizational processes and practices.
Natural resource management is closely linked to conflict management, prevention and resolution. Managing natural resources involves reconciling diverging interests that often lead to conflict, which can undermine management institutions and lead to exploitation, environmental destruction and deteriorating livelihoods. If conflicts turn violent, they can rip apart the entire fabric of society. Thus, managing conflicts in a peaceful manner is decisive not only for successful and sustainable resource management but for societal stability in general.
A review of case law and other documentation of human rights issues in fishing communities highlights forced evictions, detention without trial, child labour, forced labour and unsafe working conditions, and violence and personal security, including gender-based violence, as key areas of concern. We argue that human rights violations undermine current attempts to reform the fisheries sector in developing countries by increasing the vulnerability and marginalization of certain groups.