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Fishers' ecological knowledge and stock assessment in Newfoundland

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... LEK includes a range of knowledge based on anecdotal information sharing amongst fishers, such as the current status or perceived changes in catch. While LEK biases need to be taken into account, previous research has demonstrated the value of LEK when other types of data are lacking, or in combination with other types of data to represent trends, and understand stock dynamics (Neis, 1992;Papworth et al., 2009;Ulman and Pauly, 2016). Integration of human dimensions into fisheries management can thus enhance decision making and management effectiveness. ...
... As a self-recruiting population, with little interaction between P. armatus populations in other water bodies, changes in environmental conditions can lead to inter-annual fluctuations in population abundance and crab size (Johnston et al., 2011). The analysis of recollections from fishing communities, sometimes referred as LEK, may be used to provide an accurate representation of changes in fishery stocks (Neis, 1992;Johannes, 1998;Philippsen et al., 2017). While in this study each sector reported a different perception of the types of changes affecting the P. armatus populations, both sectors reported a change affecting the P. armatus stocks. ...
... For example, seasonal closures appeared to be acceptable among commercial fishers in Portugal (Silva et al., 2019) and Northern Ireland (Yates, 2014). Temporal fishery closures are widely used to conserve stocks as they have proved effective, especially during specific times of the year, e.g. during spawning (Neis, 1992;Johannes, 1998). Thus, the suggestion of a closed season across the three estuaries provides managers with insights into a management option more likely to be supported by recreational crab fishers in these estuaries. ...
Article
Fisher perceptions are a useful source of information that allows changes in stocks to be detected quickly and indicate the social acceptability of different management regulations. Yet traditionally, such information is rarely employed when developing management approaches. Face-to-face interviews were used to elicit recreational and commercial fishers’ perceptions of a crab (Portunus armatus) fishery in three south-western Australian estuaries. Differences in the perceived changes in the average size of crabs and fishing effort, reported concerns and supported solutions were detected among the recreational fishers utilizing the three estuaries and between recreational and commercial fishers in the Peel-Harvey Estuary. However, some common views were expressed by recreational and commercial fishers, with both sectors stating concerns over recreational fisher compliance and increased fishing and environmental pressures. While both sectors believed that reducing fishing and increasing compliance would benefit crab stocks, the mechanisms for achieving this differed. Recreational fishers favoured increasing the length of the seasonal closure, while commercial fishers favoured the introduction of a recreational shore-based fishing licence. These findings suggest that sector- and estuary-specific management rules may better facilitate the amelioration of pressures affecting individual estuaries and could contribute towards a more socially and biologically sustainable fishery.
... Third wave: growth and reform-applied social science Citing the work of Johannes (1981), Barbara Neis was among the first to research fishers' knowledge in the commercial fisheries of the developed world. In a paper in a regional journal (Neis, 1992), she brought together the ethnography of others (e.g. McCay, 1976) with fishers' knowledge from formally arranged interviews she had conducted. ...
... In doing this, she provided a new narrative for collapse of the northern cod (Gadus morhua) of Newfoundland. This narrative showed that if Canadian fisheries scientists had listened more effectively to the concerns of some fishers about the deteriorating health of inshore cod stocks then they may have been able to act sooner to prevent the collapse (Neis, 1992), one that there has been no real recovery from (Hutchings and Rangeley 2011). Over the next 10 -15 years, Neis became part of a research cluster of Canadian scholars who began to broaden the documentation of fishers' knowledge of various stocks of cod (Hutchings and Ferguson, 2000a;Murray et al., 2008b), salmon (Felt, 1994), and lobster (Davis et al., 2006). ...
... The interviews employed by third wave scholars have been of a more interdisciplinary nature, often being conducted by teams of researchers in which different individuals have brought socioeconomic then biological expertise (Neis, 1992). In Murray et al.'s (2006) profile of a Canadian fisher, multidisciplinary researchers using an interview were able to describe how he, in addition to relying on a detailed ecological knowledge of cod, shrimp and crab stocks, was also able to reference a comprehensive operational and economic knowledge to maximize the day-to-day efficiency of his fishing activities. ...
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Fishers' knowledge research is an approach to fisheries research that has a relatively long history, yet has generally failed to become integrated into the fisheries science mainstream alongside approaches that rely primarily on the knowledge of professional scientists. Its continued position on the margins of fisheries science has not however stopped fishers' knowledge researchers from publishing an expanding literature, which they often use to advocate for the greater consideration of fishers' knowledge by fisheries scientists and managers. They believe that the unique and often highly qualitative knowledge of fishers could inform better decision-making, resulting in improved socio-ecological outcomes for fisheries. This review first outlines the scope of the fishers' knowledge literature, before outlining five waves of fishers' knowledge research that have developed over the last century. For each wave, the nature of the fishers' knowledge documented during it is noted, as is the research and dissemination approach taken by its practitioners. The impact of that wave on mainstream fisheries science is then assessed. Overall, it is found that only one wave of fishers' knowledge research is beginning to have consistent success integrating with mainstream fisheries science, a wave that omits the research of many of the unique elements of fishers' knowledge. Other waves have died out, or are in danger of dying out, either because they have failed to be noticed by mainstream fisheries scientists or because mainstream fisheries scientists have not welcomed their outputs. It is summarized that fishers' knowledge research will only continue as a productive activity if mainstream fisheries scientists begin to open their discipline to other knowledge cultures and if fishers' knowledge researchers facilitate this action by disseminating their research so that it is more accessible to these scientists.
... This seems to reflect doubt about the value of such knowledge (e.g. Neis 1992;Ruddle 1994;Mackinson and Nùttstad 1998). Is such doubt warranted? ...
... A fisheries management debacle brought about in part by the refusal of biologists to take fishers' knowledge seriously was the north Atlantic cod fishery's collapse. One sign of its imminence was the warning of inshore cod fishermen that spawning stocks on their fishing grounds had become alarmingly low (Neis 1992;Finlayson 1994;Pinkerton and Weinstein 1995;Harris 1998;Kurlansky 1998). The consequences of ignoring this and related warnings are too well known to need reiteration here. ...
... We had hoped to include some case studies from large-scale industrial fisheries in this article, but the examples we are aware of are too complex to distil into the kind of brief accounts we present here. For literature on FEK in such fisheries see Neis (1992Neis ( , 1998, Eythorsson (1993), Mackinson and Nùttstad (1998), Hall-Arber and Pederson (1999), Baelde (in press), Neis and Felt (in press). ...
... This study contributes to a growing body of work documenting selfreported observations of fishermen and using those structured accounts to examine prevailing experiences throughout a fishing fleet [13,18,26,31,32,40]. This paper compares semidirected interview [8] data documenting trends in incidental catch-in this case, incidental catches of non-target species while targeting Pacific halibut-with fisheries-independent data, and explores putative relationships between characteristics of fishing operations and incidental catch. ...
... Recent work by Bell et al. [6] indicates fishermen can accurately self-report information about discards. The research presented in this article builds on these findings and contributes to a growing body of work demonstrating ways fishermen's observations may be used in management for data collection and monitoring or enforcement [13,18,26,31,32,4,40]. ...
Article
This paper compares observations of commercial fishermen with a fishery-independent survey, and explores putative relationships between characteristics of fishing operations and incidental catch in the Pacific halibut fishery in Southeast Alaska. Results from a multiple factor analysis demonstrate statistically significant relationships between fishing characteristics and the incidental catch of various species. Results from a proportional odds logistic regression model indicate the presence of a strong unavoidable component of incidental catch in the halibut fishery. Consequently, patterns of incidental catch in this fishery generally paralleled patterns of incidental catch in a fishery-independent stock assessment survey that uses similar gear. This suggests that increased onboard monitoring of this fleet by cameras or human observers is unlikely to reveal broad trends in incidental catch that are not already apparent in the fishery-independent stock assessment survey. Nevertheless, weaker statistically significant relationships in the model indicate that incidental catch may be influenced by observable and controllable characteristics of fishing operations (e.g., fishing grounds, season, vessel length, gear configuration). This suggests a proportional odds model like the one presented in this paper could be used to generate operation-specific estimates of incidental catch by species from incidental catches observed in fishery-independent surveys based on known characteristics of fishing operations.
... Dagens fiske på Newfoundland foregår stort sett på krabbe og andre arter, mens det tidligere rike torskefisket stort sett er borte. Lokale fiskere hadde imidlertid i årevis før kollapsen advart mot at noe var galt med torskebestandene, uten at dette ble tatt hensyn til (Neis 1992). Som en løsning på forvaltningens manglende evne til å forvalte fisket riktig, har mange forskere pekt på integrasjon av fiskerkunnskap i forvaltningen som det riktige å gjøre (noen ganger 36 kalt "integrasjonsprosjektet", se Neis, Felt et al. 1999 Havforskningsinstituttets rapport om gytefelter for torsk i Storfjord, i tillegg til mediedekning i regionale og lokale aviser av konflikten mellom Storfjord Torsk AS og fjordfiskere. ...
... Hva menes egentlig med produksjon og integrasjon av fiskerkunnskap i forvaltningen? Ifølge forskning på fiskeres økologiske kunnskap i canadisk fiskeriforvaltning hadde fiskernes kunnskap før 1990 lav status som anekdotisk og lite troverdig blant fiskeribiologer og forvaltere (Neis 1992). I senere forvaltningsmodeller legges det imidlertid større vekt på verdien av fiskeres kunnskap som nyttige bidrag til forvaltningen, som understreket for eksempel av konvensjonen om biologisk mangfold. ...
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p>Title: Monster cod, science and politics in Storfjord. Management production of fishers’ knowledge This article asks in which cases fishers’ knowledge is accepted as credible knowledge with the power to influence management decisions. During the «Storfjord Controversy» which was a conflict between capture fisheries and cod farming in Storfjord in northern Norway, fishers’ knowledge on cod spawning grounds became one of the central issues. This knowledge was produced through collection and transformation of interviews with fishers into polygons and tables in a public, online marine resource map database. Marine scientists verified the existence and importance of the spawning grounds in conflict with the cod farms, which strengthened the credibility of fishers’ knowledge. When deformed «monster cod» started appearing in the fishers’ nets, fishers’ knowledge was however not as dependent on scientific approval in order to influence political and management decision-making. The article argues that fishers’ knowledge is seen as more credible and thereby has greater power in contexts where it is seen as supportive of the environment against environmental threats. Denne artikkelen spør i hvilke tilfeller fiskerkunnskap blir ansett som troverdig og får makt til å påvirke forvaltningen. I løpet av den såkalte "Storfjord-saken" ble fiskeres kunnskap om gytefelter for torsk i tilknytning til torskeoppdrett et sentralt tema. Fiskerkunnskap om gytefelter ble vitenskapelig verifisert av Havforskningsinstituttet og fiskernes utsagn om Storfjord som en viktig gytefjord for kysttorsk ble dermed oppfattet som troverdig og forvaltningsrelevant. Imidlertid ble fiskernes påstander om negative innvirkninger av torskeoppdrett på villfisk også oppfattet som troverdige uten den samme vitenskapelige verifiseringen. Dette skjedde blant annet på grunnlag av medieoppslag om «monstertorsk» som gjorde torskeoppdrett til en politisk kontroversiell miljøtrussel, og allierte fiskerne med den truede kysttorsken. Artikkelen argumenterer for at fiskerkunnskap ikke i seg selv er forvaltningsrelevant, men er avhengig av vitenskapelig produksjon og verifisering for å ha påvirkning på forvaltningen. Om fiskeres påstander spiller på lag med rådende miljøpolitikk, som i monstertorsk-saken, er sjansen imidlertid større for at fiskerkunnskapen kan bli godtatt som troverdig og påvirke politiske beslutninger uten å gå veien om vitenskapen.</p
... The role of fishers' knowledge in science and management has received growing attention over the last two decades. Generated by the northern cod stock collapse (Neis, 1992;Finlayson, 1994), this research has proliferated and been connected to more inclusive approaches of "interactive governance" (Kooiman et al., 2005) and co-management (Wilson et al., 2003, see above). While earlier publications concentrated on the rejection of the value of fishers' knowledge by managers and scientists (e.g., Neis, 1992), subsequent research focused on its utility and potential usefulness for policy integration (Palsson, 2000;Holm, 2003;Hoefnagel et al., 2006;Murray et al., 2005). ...
... Generated by the northern cod stock collapse (Neis, 1992;Finlayson, 1994), this research has proliferated and been connected to more inclusive approaches of "interactive governance" (Kooiman et al., 2005) and co-management (Wilson et al., 2003, see above). While earlier publications concentrated on the rejection of the value of fishers' knowledge by managers and scientists (e.g., Neis, 1992), subsequent research focused on its utility and potential usefulness for policy integration (Palsson, 2000;Holm, 2003;Hoefnagel et al., 2006;Murray et al., 2005). Today the value and usefulness of fishers' knowledge for management purposes is generally acknowledged, but new questions dominate research and practice, e.g., how to effectively include fishers' knowledge in policy systems, such as the CFP (Linke and Jentoft, 2014;Mackinson and Kongshøj-Wilson, 2014). ...
... Similar sentiments were expressed by some of the fishers interviewed by Neis (1992) in her study of the Newfoundland Cod fishery, and by Jentoft and Mikalsen in their paper on the management of Norwegian inshore cod stocks. The case for a synthesis with LTK has been greatly boosted by scientific validation of knowledge from these and other communities (e.g. ...
... It should be realized that resource-users everywhere have sometimes failed to protect (e.g. Neis, 1992), particularly when driven by necessity or greed: ...
... Local fishery knowledge encompasses all the observations and experiences garnered by generations who were dependent on the successful pursuit of fish. In many instances, the scientific basis of local fishery knowledge has been documented ( Johannes 1981;Ruddle 1994;Acheson and Wilson 1996) and its utility to fisheries management demonstrated (Neis 1992;Christie et al. 1994;Dyer and McGoodwin 1994). Government officials and fishery researchers embedded in the positivist paradigm, however, often dismiss local knowledge as anecdotal and unscientific ( Johannes 1981:ix;Neis 1992). ...
... In many instances, the scientific basis of local fishery knowledge has been documented ( Johannes 1981;Ruddle 1994;Acheson and Wilson 1996) and its utility to fisheries management demonstrated (Neis 1992;Christie et al. 1994;Dyer and McGoodwin 1994). Government officials and fishery researchers embedded in the positivist paradigm, however, often dismiss local knowledge as anecdotal and unscientific ( Johannes 1981:ix;Neis 1992). ...
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In the United States, many of the laws governing environmental conservation and management stipulate that the best available science be used as the basis for policy and decision making. The Endangered Species Act, for example, requires that decisions on listing a species as threatened or endangered be made on the basis of the "best scientific and commercial data available." Similarly, National Standard 2 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act states that conservation and management measures shall be based on "the best scientific information available." Further, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has emphasized the role of best available science in implementing the Clean Water Act (USEPA 1997). Determining what constitutes the best available science, however, is not straightforward, and scientists, policymakers, and stakeholders often have disparate ideas on how the concept should be defined and interpreted. The American Fisheries Society and the Estuarine Research Federation established a committee to consider what determines the best available science and how it might be used to formulate natural resource policies and procedures. This synopsis examines how scientists and nonscientists perceive science, what factors affect the quality and use of science, and how changing technology and societal preferences influence the availability and application of science. Because the issues surrounding the definition of best available science surface when managers and policymakers interpret and use science, we also discuss the interface between science and policy and explore ways in which scientists, policymakers, and managers can more effectively apply science to environmental policy.
... Sounders also reduce the time handline fishers spend on locating cod. Throughout the 1980s, there was increased use of "Japanese" cod traps whose design allows for reduced escapement of fish and permits their placement in areas unsuitable for regular cod traps (Neis 1992). Advanced navigation equipment such as Loran C enables fishers to record electronically the location of large fish assemblages, sites of previously large catches, and the precise orientation of gillnet sets. ...
... Advanced navigation equipment such as Loran C enables fishers to record electronically the location of large fish assemblages, sites of previously large catches, and the precise orientation of gillnet sets. The necessity of having to increase effort significantly throughout the 1970s and 1980s in order to maintain catches is amply reflected in interviews with inshore cod fishers (e.g., Neis 1992; Davis et al. 1994). High trawler catch rates can be maintained despite declining stock size for the simple reason that fishers do not exploit fish in a random manner. ...
Article
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Temporal changes in demography, population sustainability, and harvest rates support the hypothesis that overexploitation precipitated the commercial extinction of northern cod, Gadus morhua, off Newfoundland and Labrador in 1992. Annual estimates of realized population growth (r) indicate that the stock was rarely sustainable at the age-specific survival and fecundity rates experienced since 1962. A twofold decline in annual survival probabilities in the 1980s was concomitant with increased inshore and offshore fishing effort, declining catch rate, and spatial shifts in gillnetting effort from areas of low (inshore) to high (offshore) catch rates. We reject hypotheses that attribute the collapse of northern cod to environmental change. Water temperature was associated neither with juvenile nor adult abundance nor with adult distribution by depth. Harvests equivalent to those of the past decade were sustainable in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in a considerably colder environment. An update...
... Indeed, where scientists have made efforts to include experiential knowledge in quantitative fisheries science, it can make significant contributions. In Canada, systematically collected information from experiential knowledge furthered understanding of relevant variables in the northern cod assessments such as stock structure, identification of spawning areas, technological creep and spatial dynamics (Neis, 1992;Neis et al., 1999;Murray et al., 2008a;Murray et al., 2008b;Johnsen et al., 2009). Within ICES, fishers' experiential knowledge was successfully used to improve the Irish Sea ecosystem model for informing the fisheries stock assessment process (ICES, 2020b). ...
Article
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For future sustainable management of fisheries, we anticipate deeper and more diverse information will be needed. Future needs include not only biological data, but also information that can only come from fishers, such as real-time ‘early warning’ indicators of changes at sea, socio-economic data and fishing strategies. The fishing industry, in our experience, shows clear willingness to voluntarily contribute data and experiential knowledge, but there is little evidence that current institutional frameworks for science and management are receptive and equipped to accommodate such contributions. Current approaches to producing knowledge in support of fisheries management need critical re-evaluation, including the contributions that industry can make. Using examples from well-developed advisory systems in Europe, United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, we investigate evidence for three interrelated issues inhibiting systematic integration of voluntary industry contributions to science: (1) concerns about data quality; (2) beliefs about limitations in useability of unique fishers’ knowledge; and (3) perceptions about the impact of industry contributions on the integrity of science. We show that whilst these issues are real, they can be addressed. Entrenching effective science-industry research collaboration (SIRC) calls for action in three specific areas; (i) a move towards alternative modes of knowledge production; (ii) establishing appropriate quality assurance frameworks; and (iii) transitioning to facilitating governance structures. Attention must also be paid to the science-policy-stakeholder interface. Better definition of industry’s role in contributing to science will improve credibility and legitimacy of the scientific process, and of resulting management.
... These are colloquially referred to as "desk-based" MSEs. Semi-structured interviews are a common tool for eliciting qualitative and quantitative fishers' knowledge (Hind, 2015), and information obtained from semi-structured interviews has been used to inform, complement, improve, or directly integrate fishers' knowledge with stock assessment (Neis, 1992;Carruthers and Neis, 2011;Tesfamichael et al., 2014;Duplisea, 2017). This study began with the idea that there could be a 'middle ground' between full and desk-based MSEs in which semi-structured interviews are conducted during a deskbased MSE with stakeholders, specifically fishers, to address knowledge gaps related to conceptual management objectives, candidate management measures, fishing behavior, and other observations related to the management system when resource limitations preclude direct stakeholder participation. ...
Article
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Management strategy evaluation (MSE) has become a more common tool for engaging stakeholders in fisheries management, and stakeholder participation in MSE is increasingly recognized as a vital component of the process. The participation of stakeholders, specifically fishers, in MSE is of particular importance because they often possess intimate knowledge of the socio-ecological management system that MSE seeks to model. When the resources to conduct a “full” MSE with direct fisher involvement are unavailable, MSEs are sometimes conducted by desk-based analysts with no fisher engagement. We propose an intermediate framework in which information collected from semi-structured interviews is used to inform a “desk-based” MSE. We demonstrate that semi-structured interviews with commercial and recreational fishers can elicit some of the same kinds of information that fishers provide during direct participation in MSE. We conducted 30 semi-structured interviews with commercial and recreational fishers from the Southeast United States participating in either Atlantic cobia (Rachycentron canadum) or black sea bass (Centropristis striata) fisheries. We collected primarily qualitative and some quantitative information about preferred conceptual objectives and management measures, and how their fishing behavior has changed in response to past management action. Commercial fishers generally preferred conceptual objectives and management measures that align with traditional MSY-based fisheries management, while recreational fishers’ responses were substantially more heterogeneous, indicating a more diverse range of desired objectives and preferred management measures. We synthesized this information to develop a suite of management procedures that employ a range of fishing mortality-based constant-catch harvest control rules and size-based management measures for simulation testing against preferred objectives by sector. We demonstrate that integrating information from semi-structured interviews with MSE in this way offers a cost-effective alternative intermediate approach to fisher participation in MSE when direct participation is not possible.
... The second came shortly afterwards when I met Barbara Neis, Professor at Memorial University, Newfoundland. Barbara introduced me to the book Words of the Lagoon by marine biologist Robert Johannes (Johannes, 1981) and inspired me with her own work and passion for bringing the knowledge of fishermen to bear on analyses of the cod stock collapse in Newfoundland in the 1990s (Neis, 1992;Neis et al., 1999). ...
Article
Based on the Buckland Professor lecture for 2021–2022, this story uses a hypothetical sketch of how the relationship between the fishing industry and scientists evolved over the last century to provide a starting point for a personal account of changes in Science Industry Research Collaboration (SIRC). After a period in the doldrums, SIRC is burgeoning in debate and in practice. Focussing on experiences in the European arena, this story looks at why SIRC is gaining momentum, what is needed to make it useful and meaningful for those involved, and the reasons why there is hope that it is here to stay.
... To address these concerns about the diversity and the practical nature of FEK, we theorize it in this paper as ways of knowing aquatic ecosystems which seamlessly infuse with the skills and habits that are used in processes of work (see also : Lauer and Aswani 2009;Neis 1992;Stanley and Rice 2001;P alsson 1998;Hind 2012;Genz 2014). Indeed, FEK is an "integral part of the everyday practice of production" (Briggs 2013, 238; see also Ignatow 2007;Ingold 2011;Sennett 2008). ...
Article
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That fishers’ ecological knowledge (FEK) can contribute to the sustainability and legitimacy of environmental planning and management is widely accepted. Nevertheless, despite this broad consensus about its importance, there is uncertainty about the ways in which FEK can be captured methodologically. Here we present the results of a methodological inquiry aimed to connect FEK to the diversity of work practices within fisheries. Using a sample from a qualitative study of Swedish small-scale fishers, we test to what extent a new combination of concept and method – Fishing Style analysis and the Structure-Dynamic-Function framework – can produce insights into the partiality and diversity of FEK, as well as its embodied and tacit aspects. Results demonstrate how different work practices generate a variety of FEKs. We use this finding to discuss the implications of our work for future study of FEK, and how attention to FEK can inform environmental planning and management.
... It has been proven that besides fish-related knowledge, as stock assessment [8], ecological decay [9], or different aspects of ethnozoology [10], FEK can be also effectively used in many other areas of both maritime and freshwater research, as fishers often take even involuntarily valuable observations of their environment. Therefore, they can also report reliable data about sources and indicators of marine pollution [11] or ecosystem modelling [12]. ...
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Background Documenting local ecological knowledge (LEK) has recently become a topic of considerable interest. LEK can contribute to various areas of ecology, including habitat management and conservation biology. It has been recently revealed that recreational fishers’ ecological knowledge (FEK) can also provide valuable information about different organisms and habitats, while recreational fishers’ ecological knowledge is understudied in many aspects and regions of the world. Methods We aimed to record Hungarian recreational FEK on plant species related to freshwater habitats. Our research was conducted in three regularly fished water bodies in Hungary, namely Lake Velence, Keleti Main Canal, and Lake Látóképi, where a total of 72 interviews were conducted with recreational anglers. During interviews, 24 plant species occurring at freshwater habitats with common or sporadic distribution were shown to anglers as single species or in congeneric pairs. Miscellaneous plant-related knowledge of anglers was also collected. Results Anglers identified a total of 16 plant species. They used 45 botanical or folk names. An angler knew the name of 4.6 plants on average and recognized 7.4 other species without naming it. According to our detailed analysis, anglers were able to name or at least recognize those plant species which are somehow related to fishing activities, are salient, and/or common. Moreover, anglers at Lake Velence recognized less plant species; however, they also had less years of fishing experience compared to anglers of the other two locations. Conclusion We found that recreational FEK exists even in the case of freshwater plants which are not the main focus of anglers. It is highly presumable that recreational fishers would be able to provide reliable ecologically related data for scientific research establishing future citizen science projects of nature conservation.
... Ecological information provided by the shers can and should be combined with that generated by experimental science to better support the assessment of sheries [88] and even to predict changes in the spatial distribution of species [89] with positive social, economic and environmental outputs. Such coproduction of research [90] can improves dialogue and the effectiveness of sheries management. ...
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Background Local ecological knowledge (LEK) in fishing communities is generated through interactions between fishers and the exploited resources. It is transmitted through social networks, interdisciplinary structures that drives the dynamics of socio-ecological systems (SES). LEK variability is supposed to depend on the quality and quantity of ecological information flow among different stakeholders. To assess what is driving LEK themes, we hypothesized that the formation of LEK clusters among fishers is determined by network articulation, fisher experience and the commercial value of the exploited species. Methods The study area comprises three fishing communities in the Western South Atlantic, in the tropical coastal zone of Brazil where artisanal shrimp fisheries (on Penaeus schmitti , P. subtilis and Xiphopenaeus kroyeri ) are a major activity. Data collection took place between March, April, and November 2019. To test our hypothesis, linear regression and bipartite network analyses were performed to visualize the interactions between fishermen groups and LEK themes. The connectivity, nesting, modularity, and centrality parameters in this social network were calculated to test the hypothesis. ResultsOur results indicate that experienced fishers enhance LEK in their networks on the themes of food, mortality, and growth. Furthermore, there are subgroups of fishers with dissimilar knowledge about the exploited shrimp species, one old on the fishery with wide knowledge, other less experienced, just knowing about reproduction and migration themes. Conclusion We conclude that there is a spatial similarity in the connectivity of fisher’s LEK, mainly concerning the reproductive and migratory dynamics of the target species, but also differences permeated by fishers’ experience and local interests. Managers initiating co-management agreements using reproduction and migration referential variables as benchmarks will be more successful if they incorporate LEK into decision-making. Regional knowledge similarities favor the implementation of management policies at a regional scale potentially reducing conflicts within fishing communities and increasing resource use efficiency.
... Sustainable use of wild plants is best achieved by building on the priorities of local people, then creating a technological base that includes both traditional and modern approaches to problem-solving (IUCN, UNEP & WWF 1991, Johnson 1992, Labatut & Akhtar 1992, Icamina 1993. Traditional patterns of resource use often include practices that inherently support sustainable development; these should be incorporated in planning and implementing socioeconomic development programs (Mitchell 1997, Reed 1990, Neis 1992). ...
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Background: The lives of the "Fur", indigenous people of Darfur, Sudan are intimately connected to local wild plants, but the traditional uses of these plants are, so far, poorly documented. Many species are indigenous to the region, but others are introduced, and have naturalized over millennia.
... Local ecological knowledge has been variously defined (Davis & Ruddle, 2010); here we take the more experiential version of "place-based empirical knowledge" (Bélisle et al., 2018). Increasingly called for in fisheries research and management, fishers' local ecological knowledge has been used to extend scientific time-series, refine stock assessments, design marine protected areas, and provide valuable social insight for informing management (Aswani, 2018;Hind, 2014;Johannes, Freeman, & Hamilton, 2000;Neis, 1992;Sáenz-Arroyo, Roberts, Torre, Cariño-Olvera, & Enríquez-Andrade, 2005). Ecological modeling and studies of fishers' knowledge often examine similar spatial questions, yet rarely are the results compared or integrated. ...
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Limited data on the spatial, environmental, and human dimensions of small‐scale fisheries hinder conservation planning, so the incorporation of fishers' local ecological knowledge may be a valuable way to fill data gaps while legitimizing management decisions. In Peru, vulnerable and poorly assessed juvenile smooth hammerhead sharks (Sphyrna zygaena) are the most commonly caught shark species in a small‐scale drift gillnet fishery. We conducted semistructured interviews with 87 hammerhead fishers in three major Peruvian ports to elucidate the spatiotemporal niche of the hammerhead fishery and environmental drivers of juvenile hammerhead catch. We also built a biophysical model of hammerhead distribution that correlated remotely sensed environmental variables with a spatially explicit fishery observer dataset. Overall, we found a consensus between fishers' knowledge and species distribution modeling. Sea surface temperature and chlorophyll‐a emerged as important environmental drivers of juvenile hammerhead catch, with both fishers' knowledge and the biophysical model identifying similar habitat preferences (~20–23°C and log chl‐a >−1.6 mg/m³). Participatory mapping of fishing grounds also corresponded to the spatiotemporal patterns of predicted hammerhead distribution. This study points to the utility of combining fishers' knowledge and biophysical modeling for spatial, temporal, and/or dynamic management of these sharks in Peru and in other data‐poor fisheries globally.
... However, although it is increasingly recognized and expected that traditional perceptions of sustainable development should play an important role in planning and implementing socioeconomic development programmes (Mitchell 1997), this expectation is yet to be fulfilled (Reed 1990;Neis 1992). This is mostly attributable to the failure to develop an adequate mechanism for integrating TK with formal (scientific) decision-making practices (Fenge and Rees 1987). ...
... In the case of small-scale fisheries 41 in developing nations, it is possible to manage a fishery using only harvest control rules to meet 42 management objectives, without formal stock assessment estimating status relative to reference 43 points (Mahon 1997). However, beyond their use to evaluate management strategies for fishery 44 resources (Carruthers et al. 2014), modeling tools can help with community engagement in the 45 scientific process, such as conflict resolution (Butler et al. 2006) and integration of local 46 knowledge to support cooperation between fishermen and scientists (Neis 1992; Azzurro et al. 47 and Ault 1992; Ault et al. 2005Ault et al. , 2008; Gedamke and Hoenig 2006; Nadon et al. 2015). As 78 measures of stock status, these length-based methods derive the spawning potential ratio (SPR) 79 reference point, defined as the proportion of unfished reproductive potential at a given level of 80 fishing pressure (Goodyear 1993). ...
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In fisheries with limited capacity for monitoring, it is often easier to collect length measurements from fishery catch than quantify total catch. Conventional stock assessment tools that rely on length measurements without total catch do not directly account for variable fishing mortality and recruitment over time. However, this equilibrium assumption is likely violated in almost every fishery, degrading estimation performance. We developed an extension of length-only approaches to account for time-varying recruitment and fishing mortality. This Length-based Integrated Mixed Effects (LIME) method at a minimum requires a single year of length data and basic biological information but can fit to multiple years of length data, catch, and an abundance index if available. We use simulation testing to demonstrate that LIME can estimate how much fishing has reduced spawning output in the most recent year across a variety of scenarios for recruitment and fishing mortality. LIME improves data-limited fisheries stock assessments by its flexibility to incorporate additional years or types of data if available and obviates the need for equilibrium assumptions.
... Hence, complexity in ecosystems can be explained as networks of feeding ("trophic") interactions among species, which co-occur within a particular habitat (Dunne 2009). This place-based knowledge is a component of the intellectual and cultural property of many fishing communities, and has been closely related to everyday work practices in the literature (e.g., Neis, 1992;Pálsson, 1995;Pálsson, 1998;Neis et al., 1999;Stanley & Rice, 2003;Crona, 2006;Lauer & Aswani, 2009;Hind, 2012;Boonstra & Hentati-Sundberg, 2014). The rich knowledge of natural resources held by fishers is the result of the intimate relationship between fishing communities and their local natural environments (e.g., Davis & Ruddle, 2010). ...
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Small-scale fisheries are learning contexts of importance for generating, transferring and updating ecological knowledge of natural environments through everyday work practices. The rich knowledge fishers have of local ecosystems is the result of the intimate relationship fishing communities have had with their natural environments across generations. Previous research on fishers’ ecological knowledge has mainly been descriptive, i.e. has focused on aspects such as reproduction, nutrition and spatial-temporal distribution and population dynamics, from a traditional view of knowledge that only recognises scientific knowledge as the true knowledge. By doing this, fishers’ ecological knowledge has been investigated separately from the learning contexts in which it is generated, ignoring the influence of social, cultural and historical aspects that characterise fishing communities, and the complex relationships between fishers and the natural environments they live and work in.
... However, although it is increasingly recognized and expected that traditional perceptions of and perspectives on sustainable development should play an important role in planning and implementing socio-economic development programmes (Mitchell 1997), this expectation is yet to be fulfilled (Reed 1990;Neis 1992). This is mostly attributable to the failure to develop an adequate mechanism for integrating the TK with formal (or scientific) decision-making practices (Fenge and Rees 1987). ...
... Nonetheless, when the Canadian government abandoned the local rules, particularly after the 200 mile limit of 1977 allowed it to take a major role in managing the fishstocks, it also left behind social and ecological lessons about the local scale (Matthews 1993). Only today, and in a halting way, are fisheries scientists in Canada and the United States recognizing the importance of highly localized phenomena, such as breeding and overwintering grounds, otherwise defined at large scale, and of locally-derived knowledge about such stocks (Neis 1992) for the viability of fishstocks. ...
... The majority of these are nonindustrial focused societies; many are tribal or indigenous, however not exclusively. Some non-indigenous groups nevertheless hold traditional ecological knowledge (Neis, 1992(Neis, , 1997. ...
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Indigenous peoples offer alternative knowledge about climate variability and change based on their own locally developed knowledges and practices of resource use. In this article we discuss the role of traditional ecological knowledge in monitoring and adapting to changing environmental conditions. Our case study documents a project to record the seasonal knowledge of the Miriwoong people in northern Australia. The study demonstrates how indigenous groups’ accumulate detailed baseline information about their environment to guide their resource use and management, and develop worldviews and cultural values associated with this knowledge. We highlight how traditional ecological knowledge plays a critical role in mediating indigenous individuals and communities’ understandings of environmental changes in the East Kimberley region of north-west Australia, and how these beliefs may influence future decision-making about how to go about adapting to climate change at a local level.
... Butler, 1983). Being able to pinpoint good fishing sites is important to fishers' economic survival (Neis, 1992), so many fishers have recorded the landmarks and catch rates at specific fishing sites. Such books of landmarks have been passed down through families as valuable heirlooms. ...
... Butler, 1983). Being able to pinpoint good fishing sites is important to fishers' economic survival (Neis, 1992), so many fishers have recorded the landmarks and catch rates at specific fishing sites. Such books of landmarks have been passed down through families as valuable heirlooms. ...
Article
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... While the utility of local knowledge to fisheries management has been demonstrated (Neis 1992;Christie et al. 1994, 105;Dyer and McGoodwin, 1994), government officials and fishery researchers embedded in the positivist paradigm often dismiss local knowledge as anecdotal and unscientific (Johannes 1981, ix;Neis 1992, 166). Stock assessment scientists typically hold that "fishers' ecological understanding is deficient, local rather than general, stories rather than numbers" (Neis 1992, 173). ...
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In addition to political partnerships. less-explored components of community-based management (CBM) are knowledge partnerships that blend expert opinion and local ecological wisdom into a comprehensive wellspring for environmental decision making. The exclusion through omission of local input in knowledge construction is a consequence of widespread application of positivist methods that are ill-equipped to engage and empower local knowledge. These gaps in the theory and practice of CBM deserve attention. In response. we explored the utility of a participatory research methodology called Rapid Rural Appraisal for gathering local fishery knowledge and formulating knowledge partnerships between expert and local ways of knowing in a Venezuelan watershed. Our research supports Nelson Mandela's assertion that "we must tap the deep understanding for the environment which is inscribed in the experience of those whose lives and well-being depend on it. Active involvement of communities in managing their environment must be the order of the day" (quoted by Harsch 1995.4).
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Background: Documenting local ecological knowledge (LEK) has recently became a topic of considerable interest. LEK can contribute to various areas of ecology, including habitat management and conservation biology. It has been recently revealed that recreational fishers’ ecological knowledge (FEK) can also provide valuable information about different organisms and habitats, while recreational fishers’ ecological knowledge is understudied in many aspects and regions of the world. Methods: We aimed to record Hungarian recreational FEK on plant species related to freshwater habitats. Our research was conducted in three regularly fished water bodies in Hungary, namely Lake Velence, Keleti Main Canal, and Lake Látóképi, where a total of 72 interviews were conducted with recreational anglers. During interviews, 24 plant species occurring at freshwater habitats with common or sporadic distribution were shown to anglers as single species or in congeneric pairs. Miscellaneous plant related knowledge of anglers was also collected. Results: Anglers identified a total of 16 plant species. They used 45 botanical or folk names. An angler knew the name of 4.6 plants on average, and recognized 7.4 other species without naming it. According to our detailed analysis, anglers were able to name or at least recognise those plant species which are somehow related to fishing activities, are salient and/or common. Moreover, anglers at Lake Velence recognized less plant species, however, they also had less years of fishing experience compared to anglers of the other two locations. Conclusion: We found that recreational FEK exist even in the case of freshwater plants which are not the main focus of anglers. It is highly presumable that recreational fishers would be able to provide reliable ecologically related data for scientific research establishing future citizen science projects of nature conservation.
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Wildlife diseases, such as Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) are growing in prevalence in ungulates in western Canada with many questions being asked about the impact on ecosystems and peoples. A collaborative research project involving a university and a regional Indigenous organization was initiated in 2007 to explore how CWD risk is being communicated to Indigenous peoples, how associated risk is being interpreted and the extent to which information about CWD and perceived risk is affecting harvest and food security. Data collected between 2008–2018 with 105 harvesters from 22 northern Alberta communities reporting about hunting in roughly 61 management units (WMU) confirm previous research about the importance of moose, white-tailed deer and mule deer to the diets of Indigenous peoples. Findings affirm the significance of ungulates to the food security of Indigenous peoples in western Canada with over 97 % of respondents reporting their motivation for harvest of moose (Alces alces), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) being food. Insights about risk communication and perception of CWD are also highlighted with the most significant finding being the high level of concern of harvesters in all areas and all years of the study. A second key finding relates to the relationship between information received about CWD which declined from 2008 to 2018 despite significant increases in the number of positive cases of CWD in Alberta. A third key finding is the importance of Indigenous Knowledge; over 97 % of respondents shared indicators of healthy moose and deer which they use to assess animals in hunting. This high degree of confidence in their own knowledge may suggest Indigenous knowledge is a mediator of risk perception (i.e., hunters are confident they can find and harvest a health animal despite the rising number of CWD cases). Although Indigenous right to lands and resources including wildlife harvesting have been little respected in the past, recognition of such rights, as well as Indigenous knowledge, is key to moving forward and developing more collaborative approaches to monitoring and managing the growing threat of CWD and other wildlife disease.
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Chapter
By way of introduction to this edited volume on researching people and the sea we discuss three key themes around which contributions to the book are organised. The first theme, ‘Experiences from the field: adapting methods, practices and reflexivity’, delves into field-based data collection and embraces reflections on doing social science research. The second theme, ‘Windows into particular methods: innovations and traditions’, explores case examples of specific methods and discusses their application in marine and fisheries research contexts. The third theme, ‘Translating across disciplines and policy’, deals with questions around interdisciplinarity and expertise exchange across the research-policy interface. All three themes highlight aspects of innovation in researching people and the sea.
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Chapter
One of the central lessons harshly underscored by the collapse of northern cod stocks is that the relation between catch per unit of effort and stock abundance is problematic. It is confounded by local knowledge. But social scientists, with disciplinary training in the collection and interpretation of local knowledge, have made little contribution to this, and other problems in fisheries management. This commentary briefly reviews several contested issues in maritime social science: the skipper effect, fleet dynamics, folk management, scientific management, and adaptations to chaotic systems. It suggests that the debates, and much of the fine-grained empirical work underlying them, evolved in the context of largely academic contests over paradigms such as cultural ecology, political economy, and recently, political ecology. An emergent approach seeks to combine prior concerns with individual and household adaptations to ecosystems and environments and with local knowledge (the domain of cultural ecology) with the problematic of political economy. These are the interrelations of production, class formation, the penetration of capital, the loss of local power and autonomy, all of which are essential antidotes to the limitations of cultural ecology. As such, the developing paradigm offers the potential for a close interface with the natural sciences, both theoretical and applied. However, political ecology, as it is emerging, is truer to its political economy roots than to its cultural ecology ones: political ecologists know little about ecology. I suggest that the programme needs to be reinvented, to address the information requirements for effective fisheries.
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In combination with historical research, this paper uses interviews of fishers, fishery workers, scientists, and Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) enforcers and observers to recount the communication processes that occurred before the 1992 collapse of the cod fishery in Atlantic Canada. As the fishery industrialized over the course of the twentieth century, those who worked in the industry became increasingly segregated. Distinct discursive realms emerged, among them "fishers' vernacular," "scientific language," "product talk," and DFO's "official word." There was little dialogue between the groups and little collective opposition to the overfishing. DFO's "official word" claimed that the stocks were strong despite protestation to the contrary from several fishers' groups and DFO's own scientists. The outcome for the region was economically and ecologically devastating. R
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This paper traces three key phases in Newfoundland's resource economy: the collapse of cod, the rise of shellfish and recent efforts to re-establish cod. I argue that these changes in the province's fish economy may be productively understood through the ‘new resource geography’. The paper explores three themes: the relationship between knowledge practices and resource management; the way in which fish resources are defined in both material and discursive forms; and the different sites and institutions involved in the regulation of the cod resource.
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The relationship between science and policy within modern fisheries resource management has been built on the idea of a neat separation of nature and policy. It would seem that the current crisis in fi sheries anagement and fishery science also features a challenge to this idea. This paper takes a closer look at one of the discourses in which the issue of science within management has been opened up for debate: That which mobilizes fi shermen’s ecological knowledge (fek) as acomplement to science within fi sheries resource management. In the fek projects, fishermen and their knowledge are defi ned and mobilized in a particular way at the same time as fishery science is reconstructed as an interested user of that knowledge. As we shall see, however, the fek argument is highly ambiguous. On the one hand it can be read as a radical challenge to ‘orthodox’ fi shery science and its monopoly in establishing the facts of nature. In this interpretation, the fek argument points towards a stronger contextualization or democratization, in short as a promise of mode-2 type science, as theorized by Nowotny et al. (2001). On the other hand, fek research practices suggest that a major thrust in the attempt of to make fishermen’s knowledge speak to scientific issues is a process of radical decontextualization, in which valid knowledge bits are mined from fi sher lore by a process that cleans out all cultural and political baggage. In this interpretation, fek does not represent a move towards contextualization of science, but is a return to Mode-1 ideals.
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Social scientists in Atlantic Canada developed an incisive political economy of the region’s fisheries in the 1970s and 1980s and forged a sharp critique of Canadian fisheries policies. Meanwhile, fisheries scientists generated a series of stock assessments which substantially overestimated cod populations. After the collapse of the stocks in 1992, a number of reflective postmortems have addressed the role of the social and natural sciences in this resource failure. The present paper will attempt to construct a “political ecology” of the crisis from this corpus, one which does not, a priori, privilege industrial capitalism over cod ecology. Key Words: fisheries, cultural ecology, political economy, technology, Atlantic Canada, cod.
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Local and traditional ecological knowledge (LTK) is increasingly recognized as an important component of scientific research, conservation, and resource management. Especially where there are gaps in the scientific literature, LTK can be a critical source of basic environmental data; this situation is particularly apparent in the case of marine ecosystems, about which comparatively less is known than terrestrial ones. We surveyed the global literature relating to the LTK of marine environments and analyzed what knowledge has been collected and with what aims and results. A large proportion of LTK which has been documented by researchers consists of species-specific information that is important for traditional resource use. However, knowledge relating to marine ecology, environmental change, and contemporary resource management practices is increasingly emphasized in the literature. Today, marine LTK is being used to provide historical and contemporary baseline information, suggest stewardship techniques, improve conservation planning and practice, and to resolve management disputes. Still, comparatively few studies are geared toward the practicalities of developing a truly collaborative, adaptive, and resilient management infrastructure that is embracive of modern science and LTK and practices in marine environments. Based on the literature, we thus suggest how such an infrastructure might be advanced through collaborative projects and "bridging" institutions that highlight the importance of trust-building and the involvement of communities in all stages of research, and the importance of shared interest in project objectives, settings (seascapes), and outcomes.
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One of the most important fisheries in the northern Benguela is the Namibian hake fishery, which targets both Merluccius capensis and Merluccius paradoxus. In spite of attempts to rebuild the hake stocks that were severely depleted by distant-water fleets before Namibia's independence in 1990, stocks have failed to recover. Because the ecological goal of stock rebuilding competes with social and economic objectives on the political stage, the ability to make accurate abundance estimates is important. However, the precision of abundance estimates is impeded by lack of understanding of hake behavior and of the effects of environmental factors. Furthermore, at present both species of hake are assessed and managed as one Namibian stock. We present qualitative information derived from interviews that we conducted with Namibian hake trawl and longline fishers during the 2009 and 2010 fishing seasons, and information gleaned from analyzing logbook data. We contextualize both types of data within the scientific literature on Namibian hakes and the Namibian hake fishery. Fishers monitor sea surface and bottom temperature, water quality, currents, and weather, and they have detailed knowledge about the behavior and habitat of hakes. Fishers differentiate between three different types of M. capensis, which they associate with different fishing areas. They also describe innovations that have taken place over the past 20 years, which are of relevance to the assessment of fishing efficiency and effort, but have not been taken into account in the stock assessments. Our analysis of logbook data supports the increase in efficiency. The results show that closer collaboration between scientists and fishers has the potential to improve the accuracy of survey estimates and stock assessments, and thus is important for rebuilding of hake stocks and the hake fishery.
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In pursuit of more adaptive forms of problem solving, we are faced with the challenge of finding more effective ways of grappling with the complexity of environmental problems, as well as keeping the conflict surrounding them within reasonable bounds.1,2 Both aims are subject to the vagaries of human psychology. For instance, individual human beings have a very limited capacity to process information, a cognitive impediment to the management of complexity,3 while the highly emotional nature of human values provides a fertile sub-strate for conflict over both the means and ends of problem solving. If we are to overcome these barriers, it is essential that we develop a better understanding of the psychological frailties that influence our collective behavior, not the least of which are our own personal biases and foibles.
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The upsurge of militant environmentalism in the 1970s introduced a variety of new psychosocial elements into the problem-solving process, making the market place of ideas much more diverse and turbulent. Particularly troublesome for the iron triangles, who had enjoyed a monopoly on decision-making power for so long, was the militant anti-industrial, antigrowth, proenvironmental stance of many of these newly organized groups. In other words, after decades of quiescence, the Arcadian worldview was beginning to reassert itself. As a result, the relatively orderly world of the decision maker was invaded by advocates of worldviews they could barely understand using styles of thinking (subjective-holistic) they were unable to tolerate. On the positive side, this period of upheaval rescued elements of Arcadian thinking from oblivion, thrusting them into public awareness where they have remained.1 On the other hand, the period was one of bad-tempered bickering during which the problem-solving process was engulfed in posturing rather than improved in quality. Debate seldom reached beyond short-term preoccupations to the more fundamental issues of sociopolitical change and social justice but became mired in the details of parochial conflicts. As a result, the period between 1970 and 1985 was one of confrontation and litigation, which hindered, rather than facilitated, innovative policy making. What I shall argue in this chap-ter, therefore, is that although this period of interest-group politics may have achieved some local gains, it did not result in more adaptive forms of problem solving.
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In this paper, the concept of adaptive management is modified from its contemporary usage in environmental management to collaborative planning in emergent tourism settings. This application is possible because both emergent tourism settings and environmental planning situations are considered turbulent, characterised by change, uncertainty, complexity and conflict. Adaptive management attempts to embrace these conditions by establishing focused interventions from which unexpected outcomes provide opportunities for learning. While adaptive management shares some features of collaboration, its focus on learning is considered more appropriate for confronting and addressing local power relations within emergent tourism settings. Yet similar problems are encountered in applying the concept. These opportunities and limitations are considered in light of a case study in Squamish, Canada.
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This paper explores and analyses how local ecological knowledge as a component of culture facilitates sustainable resource management practices among riverine fishing communities in Kerala, India. The paper is based on a comparative ethnographic analysis between a heterogeneous fishing village and a homogeneous fishing village within the Pamba-Achankovil River Basin. Key observations from analysis show that various groups of fishermen give emphasis to different knowledge spheres based on the nature of the resources and the type of fishing gear they are familiar with. Local knowledge among the fishing communities plays a crucial role in the sustainable management of fishery resources. However, this local knowledge serves the purpose of sustainable resource management only when it is supplemented by the other components of culture.
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The linkage between legitimate local participation and institutional/legal openness was demonstrated by an evaluation of the current freshwater fishery regulatory system in Venezuela as explicated in the 1944 Ley de Pesca (Law of the Fishery). By examining the current efficacy of Venezuela's freshwater fishery laws and government openness to local input, this case‐study illustrates barriers to community‐based management (CBM) created by top‐down management paradigms and hierarchical legal frameworks. Analysis of a proposed CBM project in Venezuela indicates that enabling institutions and legislation are necessary for effective long‐term, decentralized freshwater fishery management. Social learning is considered as an approach for making the political and legal climate more amenable to local input. The intent is to further clarify how the union of what is legal and what is civil in a society can enhance the capacity and potential of management devolution and therefore bring us closer to achieving sustainable natural resource use.
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The authors use Agarwal's (1992, 1997) research methodology for analyzing the intersection of gender, poverty and the environment in rural India and apply it to the case of fishing communities in Newfoundland. Here too, environmental degradation, “statization” and privatization of hitherto public resources, as well as technological development, and erosion of community management systems, effect similar adverse consequences on women. In both cases the effects are magnified by a retrenchment of liberal ideology that shrivels state social programs. We find the devaluation of women's fishing knowledge, their decreasing health and general nutrition, and the gendered nature of financial and temporal-spatial stress are associated with these larger trends.
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Epifaunal reefs in Foveaux Strait are oyster (Ostrea chilensis Philippi, 1845) habitat. One hundred and thirty years of oyster dredging has diminished the complexity and distribution of these reefs. Commercial densities of blue cod (Parapercis colias (Forster in Bloch and Schneider, 1801)) were discovered on epifaunal reef habitat in 1989 and became the focus of a major blue cod fishery. We document habitat changes that followed the closing of the oyster fishery in 1993 and interactions between the blue cod and oyster fisheries after the oyster fishery was reopened in 1996. Evidence from blue cod fishers and oyster surveys suggests that the benthic habitat of some oyster beds regenerated in the absence of dredging and that the relative density of blue cod, and then oysters, rebuilt to commercial levels. Benthic habitat was modified once more when oyster dredging restarted and the relative density of blue cod on oyster beds fell again. The observations suggest that rotational fishing of oysters could mitigate the effects of dredging on habitat and that marine protected areas could expedite habitat recovery. Increasing habitat complexity and blue cod density on a reef of oyster shells formed by an oyster fisher suggests that habitat enhancement might remedy effects of dredging. The questions raised by the observations could be answered by management experiments on the scale of the fisheries.
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