Human right vs. property rights debate: Feb 1, 2017

Human rights vs. property rights
February 1, 2017

During the web debate, five speakers provided unique perspectives on the topic of ‘Human right vs. property rights’ – which of these truly promote sustainable SSF?. The audience had a chance to hear diverse opinions about the two concepts, some of which support the notion that there is a deep cleft between human rights and property rights, while others see them as complimentary to each other.

Recording of the debate


Summary of the web-debate

Web-debate summary



Naseegh-JafferNaseegh Jaffer: World Forum for Fisher People (WFFP) & Masifundise Development Trust, South Africa

Bio: Naseegh Jafer is Director of Masifundise Development Trust, whose mission is to facilitate mobilization and organization of fishing communities at the grass roots level, in order for communities to become empowered and capable of taking part in political and economic decision making processes. He is General Secretary of WFFP, a mass-based social movement of small-scale fisher people that represents over 10 million fisher people from all over the world.

Profil_Mads Christian Barbesgaard(1)-1Mads Barbesgaard: PhD-student, Lund University, Sweden & Afrika Kontakt

Bio: Aside from his PhD-studies Mads is chair of political affairs at Afrika Kontakt, a social justice organisations based in Denmark that works with and supports like-minded social movements. Naseegh and Mads have been involved in the development of the recently published report on ‘Human Rights vs. Property Rights: Implementation and Interpretation of the SSF Guidelines’.

PhotoifremerKATIA_2Katia Frangoudes: Senior Researcher at the Université de Bretagne Occidentale, France, specializing in women in fisheries and aquaculture in Europe and institutional issues in fisheries management.

Bio: Katia is a Senior Researcher in UMR AMURE laboratory of the University of Brest, France. Her main research topics are women’s roles in European fisheries, marine resource governance, and fisheries management. She is also the facilitator of AKTEA, a European Network of Women Organizations in Fisheries lobby for gender equality and women rights in the European Union.

Thomas V. Grasso: Senior Director for Global Oceans Program at Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)

Bio: Thomas V. Grasso has over 25 years’ experience working in the conservation and sustainable development having worked on such programs and initiatives in Europe, Africa, the Americas, southeast Asia and the Pacific. A former environmental lawyer, he brings extensive experience in building effective partnerships and governance systems in support of sustainable use of natural resources for the benefits of people and communities that rely on those resources for their livelihoods.

Adam solimanAdam Soliman: MSc., JD, LLM, Director of the Fisheries Law Centre; Adjunct Professor of Law, UBC & DMU; Barrister & solicitor, Lonsdale Law. BC, Canada

Bio: In addition to his legal practice, Adam is the director of The Fisheries Law Centre. He is a researcher focused on legal and economic issues in fisheries & seafood sectors. Adam’s research interest is in fisheries laws and regulations as well as fisheries economics. In particular, he is interested in conducting analysis to issues in fisheries management with special focus on small-scale fisheries.


Background readings on human and property rights within the context of SSF

Getting Rights Right, Samudra Comment, March 2015

Human Rights vs. Property Rights: Implementation and Interpretation of the SSF Guidelines

Rights-based fisheries and contested claims of ownership: Some necessary clarifications

Tenure & Fishing Rights 2015: A global forum on rights-based approaches in fisheries

Rights-based fisheries governance: From fishing rights to human rights

ITQs: a Road of No Return – Rights Based Management and Small Scale Fisheries in the EU


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