Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 420057
Title The tragedy of our legacy: how do global management discourses affect small-scale fisheries in the South?
Author(s) Kolding, J.; Zwieten, P.A.M. van
Source Forum for Development Studies 38 (2011)3. - ISSN 0803-9410 - p. 267 - 297.
Department(s) Aquaculture and Fisheries
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Abstract Modern fisheries management discourse is supported by two fundamental narratives that have global impacts. One is the fear of open access regimes, and the other is the condemnation of catching under-sized and immature fish. These narratives have existed for more than half a century and originate from the common property theory and the maximum yield per recruit theory. Our aim is to critically discuss and evaluate these narratives which have been developed within the context of scientific management of single-species industrial fisheries. We will show that the underlying assumptions can be seriously wrong and particularly absurd in fluctuating multi-species, multi-gear artisanal fisheries. Fishing effort in small scale fisheries is often largely regulated by natural production, like other top predators, and many targeted fish stocks and fish communities display a high degree of resilience. Furthermore, in spite of common belief, small scale unregulated, non-selective, adaptive fishing patterns could be healthier and far more ecosystem conserving than the current imposed single species management strategies. Many of these fisheries are serving as a ‘social security system’ – a common good and thereby function as a ‘last resort’ for economic mishap. Limiting open access will undermine the role of small scale fisheries to provide insurance, particularly for the poorest and least advantaged. The immense pressure to adapt to modern fisheries management thinking and economic theory is based on flawed assumptions and will not only have negative social effects, but also negative biological effects.
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