Marc Léopold is a fisheries scientist at the French Institute of Research for Development (IRD) since 2005. He is also one of the contributors of the TBTI transdisciplinary fisheries cluster. He is interested in action-research approaches to address governance and management issues of small-scale fisheries in the South. He has conducted most of his research in South America (French Guiana) and the South Pacific (New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji) and just started activities in the Indian Ocean (Madagascar).
What are you currently working on within the context of small-scale fisheries?
ML: I have lead context-specific research projects to study the functioning of reef fishery systems through strong collaborations and close relationships with Fisheries Authorities, fisher communities, and scientists from different disciplines (from ecology to anthropology). I investigate the production and the use of fishery knowledge (such as resource status, fishing practices, decision-making processes, monitoring programs, etc.) to design and implement management rules and multi-level governance systems according to local ecological, socio-cultural and economic context. I also highlight the need for engaging local fishers and governance structures at all stages of fishery research projects through innovative participatory approaches such as transdisciplinary research and action-research.