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Chapter 5

Governance of Tenure in Small-Scale Fisheries & Resource Management




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Chp 5: Handouts


5.a Keywords & Definitions

5.b Blue Justice: A Fisheries Simulation - Setup Instructions

5.c Dynamics Revealed

5.d Dynamic Rules for Participants

5.h Blue Justice Key Terms & Definitions

5.4.a Biodiversity Keywords & Definitions

Chp: Resources
Chp 5: Videos
Chp 5: PDFs


SSF Guidelines: Governance of tenure and resource management

This short, animated video by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations gives insights into the governance of tenure and resource management in small-scale fisheries. The term "tenure" refers to how rights to natural resources such as land, lakes, rivers, coasts, and forests are assigned within societies.

Governance of Tenure in Small-Scale Fisheries: Key Considerations

Dr. Anthony Charles' paper explores key considerations relating to recognizing, reinforcing, and developing tenure systems in small-scale fisheries (SSF) and creating the right conditions for flourishing tenure systems that are secure and fair, respecting the human rights of SSF community members. 

Blue Justice and the Co-Production of Hermeneutical Resources for SSF

Authors Milena Arias SchreiberRatana Chuenpagdee, and Svein Jentoft examine 20 testimonies of injustices experienced by SSF people collected by the global research network Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) and suggest a glossary of new concepts that can be used to interpret these experiences.

Blue Growth and Blue Justice

Lead author Nathan Bennett's working paper reviews past evidence of the social injustices resulting from ocean-based development. Society's current focus on the "Blue Economy" overall results in an uneven distribution of benefits and substantial social harm for small-scale fishing communities.

Tourism, Land Grabs and Displacement

Although the tourism sector is often presented as a positive movement that brings people across cultures together and contributes to local livelihoods, Dr. Andreas Neef sheds light on the displacement and dispossession issues rightsholder face through 20 different case studies. 

Marine Tenure and Small-scale Fisheries: A Sourcebook of Good Practices and Emerging Themes 

USAID's sourcebook draws on findings from scholarly research, policy documents, development projects, and publications by development practitioners, researchers, and nongovernmental organizations to explore good practices and emerging themes in marine tenure and small-scale fisheries.

Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (VGGT)

The FAO's VGGT represents the first inter-governmental consensus on the principles and accepted standards for the responsible governance of tenure for governments, international organizations, communities, and the private sector.

Too Big to Ignore

Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) provides a comprehensive overview of Blue Justice and includes infographics, articles, projects, and opportunities to connect with others interested in promoting social and environmental justice in fisheries.

SSF Hub: Fisheries policy, governance & management

How can you build a strong governance and management system for your fishery and community? Learn more about secure tenure and fisheries management by exploring the resources in the SSF Hub's digital library.

Chp 5: Websites
Chp 5: References


Arias Schreiber, M., Chuenpagdee, R., & Jentoft, S. 2022. Blue Justice and the co-production of Hermeneutical Resources for small-scale fisheries. Marine Policy, 137, 104959.


Catherine A. Courtney & Nayna J. Jhaveri. 2017. Marine Tenure and Small-Scale Fisheries: A Sourcebook on Good Practices and Emerging Themes. Washington, DC: USAID Tenure and Global Climate Change Program.

Catron, L.E. 2017. 25 Life Skills learned in Theatre. In: 25 Life Skills learned in Theatre. Cited 13 January 2023.

David Shiffman. 2022. How Often is New Life Discovered in the Ocean? In: Scuba Diving. Cited 13 January 2023.

Engen, S., Hausner, V.H., Gurney, G.G., Broderstad, E.G., Keller, R., Lundberg, A.K., Murguzur, F.J.A. et al. 2021a. Blue justice: A survey for eliciting perceptions of environmental justice among coastal planners’ and small-scale fishers in Northern-Norway. PLOS ONE, 16(5): e0251467.

FAO and FIAN International. 2022. Putting the Voluntary Guidelines on Tenure and the Voluntary Guidelines on Small-Scale Fisheries into practice – A learning guide for civil society organizations. Rome, FAO.


INFOFISH ORG. 2021. John Kurien: Co-Management as a Dance In: APFIC webinar 2021: Characteristics and performance of co-management in Asia. Malaysia. Cited 13 January 2023.


Nakamura, J., Chuenpagdee, R. & El Halimi, M. 2021. Unpacking legal and policy frameworks: A step ahead for implementing the Small-Scale Fisheries Guidelines. Marine Policy, 129: 104568.

Ouedraogo, H. 2010. Myths, deadlocks of land registration, and the need for alternative approaches. Agence Française de Développement. Briefing Notes.

Pienaar, G. 2012. The methodology used to interpret customary land tenure. Potchefstroom Electronic Law Journal (PELJ), 15(3): 152–185.

Rachel Nuwer. 2013. Chimps Have an Innate Sense of Fairness. In: Smithsonian Magazine. Cited 13 January 2023.

Sarkki, S., Heikkinen, H.I. & Löf, A. 2020. Reindeer Herders as Stakeholders or Rights-Holders? Introducing a Social Equity-Based Conceptualization Relevant for Indigenous and Local Communities. In: D.C. Nord, ed. Nordic Perspectives on the Responsible Development of the Arctic: Pathways to Action. pp. 271–292. Springer Polar Sciences. Cham, Springer International Publishing.

TBTI. 2023. Blue Justice. In: Too Big To Ignore Global Partnership for Small-Scale Fisheries Research. Cited 12 January 2023.

WWF Team. undated. Wild Classroom Biodiversity Toolkit. In: World Wildlife Fund. Cited 13 January 2023.

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