The Importance of Involving Stakeholders and Scientists in the Management of Marine Fisheries
In recent years there has been increasing concern over the state of fish stocks, especially those that support key fisheries and supply food to many consumers. There is also concern over the state of aquatic environments, and the effects of climate change. Fisheries management is controlled by government agencies, often cooperating with similar agencies from other nations. This paper deals with the need for expert advice on fisheries, involving fishers as well as scientists. Mention is made of a Fisheries Partnership set up in Europe, bringing fishers and scientists together with other stakeholders to discuss the problems of managing fish stocks. The partnership was especially successful in improving relationships between fishers and scientists, and made significant improvements to some fish stock assessments. European Regional Advisory Councils were later established to play a similar role. They are providing significant advice on fisheries, but they do not yet play a key role in actual management. It is important to consider how stakeholders and scientists can become more actively involved in fisheries management. There is a crucial need to develop new, more participatory ways of managing fisheries.
Keywords:Fish stocks, Fisheries, Advisory councils, Climate change
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