Research Clusters

Find out what each cluster is doing and sign up to be part of this exciting work. You can join as many clusters as you like.

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#1: Global synthesis

Synopsis :

Global synthesis cluster focuses on various analyses that can be performed based on findings from about TBTI in-depth studies as well as on the Information System on Small-scale Fisheries (ISSF). Through comparative analysis and broad-based synthesis, we aim to generate several research briefs and policy briefs, along with journal articles, to communicate key messages about small-scale fisheries, illustrating why they are too big to ignore and too important to fail. We will also delve into the question about whether small-scale fisheries are sustainable, compared to their large-scale counterpart.

Coordinators :

  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada
  • Rodolphe Devillers, Memorial University, Canada
  • Andrew Frederick Johnson, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, USA
  • Sérgio Mattos, Ministry of Planning, Brazil

#2: SSF Guidelines

Synopsis :

The Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (SSF Guidelines) represent a global consensus on principles and guidance for small-scale fisheries governance and development. They are intended to guide governments, fishing communities and other stakeholders to work together and ensure sustainable small-scale fisheries for those involved in the sector and for the society at large. To support the implementation of the SSF Guidelines, this cluster will analyze existing policies, strategies and actions and see how well and if at all governments around the world are ready to implement them.

Coordinators :

  • Svein Jentoft, University of Tromsø, Norway
  • Maria Jose Barragan Paladines, Memorial University, Canada
  • Nicole Franz, FAO
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#3: Diverse SSF values

Synopsis :

Small-scale fisheries are integral to community wellbeing. They contribute to food security, livelihoods of men, women, and children, health, community identity, and social cohesion. This research cluster focuses on building understanding of public and private values, going beyond economic to consider social, cultural, historical and other value dimensions. Through case studies from around the world, the cluster aims to answer the following questions: how important small-scale fisheries are to the society and what role they play in enhancing community wellbeing. Findings from this cluster will be disseminated in various formats, including as research briefs for the communities.

Coordinators :

  • Derek Johnson, University of Manitoba, Canada
  • Alan White, The Nature Conservancy, USA
  • Julian Idrobo, University of Manitoba, Canada
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#4: Market opportunities

Synopsis :

Several factors affect the capacity of small-scale fishers to sell their fish, receive fair prices, and to add value to their catches. For instance, existing national and regional regulations, globalized marketing schemes, and other trade barriers may restrict opportunities for small-scale fisheries to benefit fully from the exchange. This research cluster aims to examine these factors and analyze shortcomings of current schemes, and explore opportunities for small-scale fisheries. We will also look at options such as alternative food networks and direct fish trade, and use of technological innovation to help improve market shares and benefits to small-scale fishers.

Coordinators :

  • Jose Pascual, University of La Laguna , Spain
  • Cristina Pita, University of Aberdeen, UK
  • Helga Josupeit, FAO
  • Joonas Plaan, Memorial University, Canada

#5: Economic viability

Synopsis :

Small-scale fisheries face many threats including climate change, globalization, competition from industrial fisheries and rapid market shifts. To withstand these threats, fishing people need to be prepared. A major step to achieve this is to help improve their economic viability. The aim of this research cluster is thus to identify factors affecting economic viability of small-scale fisheries in as many places around the world as possible, compares and contrasts mechanisms that small-scale fishing people employ to improve their viability, and make appropriate policy recommendations in accord with these findings.

Coordinators :

  • Rashid Sumaila, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Anna Schuhbauer, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Jyothis Sathyapalan, Centre for Economic and Social Studies (CESS), India
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#6: Fish as food

Synopsis :

Concern about food security and malnutrition continues to rise globally, including among several communities living near water bodies where fish should go directly to feed local populations. Competition for fish is prevalent, not only in terms of harvesting for human consumption but also in some feed production industries that rely on fish as raw materials. How vulnerable small-scale fishing people are to malnutrition and with whom they have to compete in order to secure food for their families are questions that this research cluster aims to address. The cluster will gather as much information as possible from small-scale fisheries in marine and inland systems.

Coordinators :

  • Moenieba Isaacs, University of Western Cape, South Africa
  • Kungwan Juntarashote, Kasetsart University, Thailand
  • Lindsay Aylesworth, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Philip Loring, University of Saskatchewan, Canada

#7: Transdisciplinary fisheries

Synopsis :

The transdisciplinary learning cluster aims to engage researchers, practitioners, community members, fishers, and policy makers with the diversity, complexity, dynamics and scale issues surrounding small-scale fisheries systems. To promote the active engagement of this diverse audience a transdisciplinary perspective is required. A transdisciplinary framework includes a system approach to effectively examine the complexity of fisheries, multiple perspectives to transparently delineate conflicts and tradeoffs, and a transformative approach that uses research as a tool to address fisheries concerns.

 

By 2016 we will develop a transdisciplinary fisheries curriculum for both online and on-site settings and can be used as part of a formal curriculum or informal training. We will also develop support materials for this curriculum including manuals and teaching kits, which will be made freely available. The curriculum and support materials will incorporate illustrative case studies from around the world.

Coordinators :

  • Kurt Korneski, Memorial University, Canada
  • Charlene Walsh, Marine Institute, Canada
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#8: SSF stewardship

Synopsis :

While any kind of fishing, large or small, has impact on ecosystem, small-scale fishing communities hold great potential as leaders and active partners in stewardship and conservation efforts. In many instances, environmental ethic is already part of their everyday practices. Their ability to contribute to stewardship and sustainability is, however, hampered by local and global pressures, including management instruments that do not take into consideration their actual and potential contributions. This research cluster aims at answering questions related to impacts of small-scale fisheries on ecosystem and their contribution to stewardship, drawing from as many case studies around the world as possible.

Coordinators :

  • Tara Sayuri Whitty, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO), USA
  • Ellen Hines, San Francisco State University, USA
  • Rebecca Lewison, San Diego State University, USA
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada
  • Mel Agapito & Delphine Rocklin, Memorial University, Canada

#9: Inland fisheries

Synopsis :

The majority of small-scale fisheries are inland. Yet, information about this sector is rather patchy, and is largely couched in the “developing country” context, focusing mostly on issues of livelihoods, poverty and economics. This research cluster will conduct a global assessment of inland fisheries, exploring the role, potential contributions, and environmental impacts of inland small-scale fisheries sub-sectors. It will also try to understand the interactions between commercial, recreational and indigenous inland fisheries, whether they are ridden with conflicts or have synergy potential. Findings from this research cluster will be used to generate key research agendas and policy suggestions for better governance of inland small-scale fisheries.

Coordinators :

  • Andrew Song, McGill University, Canada
  • Steven Cooke, Carleton University, Canada
  • Paul Onyango, University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
  • Shannon Bower, Carleton University, Canada

#10: Indigenous marine fisheries

Synopsis :

Coastal indigenous fishing communities have close economic, social and cultural linkages with marine ecosystems that are vital for maintaining their food supply and traditions. Like other small-scale fisheries, they are vulnerable to global changes, including those related to climate. Little is known, however, about the impacts and influence of climate change on indigenous fishing communities. This research cluster aims to help fill this knowledge gap by providing a global overview of coastal indigenous groups and their respective concerns regarding climate change. The cluster will address two research questions: “What is the contribution of indigenous fishing communities to food security?” and “What are the expected ecological impacts of climate change on these fisheries?”

Coordinators :

  • Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor, The University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Yoshitaka Ota, The University of British Columbia, Canada
  • William Cheung, The University of British Columbia, Canada

#11: Transboundary interactions

Synopsis :

Threats to small-scale fishing livelihoods occur not only at local or national scale, by nearby coastal development and/or conservation schemes. Dispossession of their livelihoods is also observed in cases of disputed sea boundaries as well as the globalization of fishing fleets. With the focus on the (geo-)politicization of fisheries, this cluster will undertake global stocktaking of the scope of transboundary fishing and map their intersections with small-scale fishers. It will also compile case studiesdealing with the impact of and responses to transboundary fishing fleets with the overall aim is to improve our understanding of how maritime transboundary issues intersect with the concerns of small-scale fisheries.

Coordinators :

  • Joeri Scholtens, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Johny Stephen, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Andrew Song, McGill University, Canada
  • Maarten Bavinck, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

#12: Global change responses

Synopsis :

Small-scale fishing communities, especially those living in low lying area, are highly susceptible to coastal disaster, caused by climate and other global change. Many of them have managed to cope and adapt, while others remain at risk. This research cluster aims to understand how small-scale fishing communities respond to change and identify factors and conditions that make it possible for them to cope and adapt. Information from case studies from around the world will be gathered and used to help develop typology of responses (IMBER-ADApT), a linked initiative with TBTI. This will be complemented by a synthesis of best management practices on adaptation planning and coastal governance through the ParCA Governance Working group.

Coordinators :

  • Alida Bundy, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
  • William Cheung, The University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Ahmed Khan, Saint Mary’s University, Canada
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#13: Small-Scale Fisheries Rights

Synopsis :

In accord with the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (SSF Guidelines), the SSF Rights cluster will emphasize the need for small-scale fishing communities to secure tenure rights to the resources, which form the basis for their social and cultural well-being, their livelihoods and their sustainable development. The SSF Rights cluster will also conduct research to support the realization of the right of small-scale fishing people to adequate food and nutrition. Finally, the SSF Rights cluster will contribute towards the implementation of human rights-based approach to sustainable SSF, as promoted in the SSF Guidelines.

Coordinators :

  • Evelyn Pinkerton, Simon Fraser University, Canada
  • Reade Davis, Memorial University, Canada
  • Moenieba Isaacs, University of Western Cape, South Africa
  • Ratana Chuenpagdee, Memorial University, Canada

#14: Women and Gender

Synopsis :

The Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (SSF Guidelines) is the first international document recognizing women contribution in fisheries and calling for Gender equity and equality. Gender equity and equality is the fourth guiding principle of the guidelines. The inclusion of gender equity and equality in the guidelines is important and the cluster “women and gender” is aiming to contribute to the implementation process of the guidelines by collecting examples from around the world about women equity and equality in SSF, identifying barriers, challenges and opportunities in such a way to highlight the approaches that can be used to implement gender equity and equality.

Coordinators :

  • Katia Frangoudes, Université de Bretagne Occidentale, France
  • Siri Gerrard, The Arctic University of Norway, Norway
  • Danika Kleiber, Pacific Island Fisheries Sciences Centre, Joint Institute for Marine Atmosphere Research, Honolulu, USA