9. Livelihoods of small-scale fishers in Latin America and the Caribbean

Chairs: Christopher D. Malcolm (Brandon University, Canada), Rosa Maria Chavez Dagostino (Centro Universitario de la Costa, Mexico)

Type: hybrid

Small-scale, artisanal fisheries are defined by “a diverse and dynamic set of activities that include various low-technology, low-capital fishing methods, as well as fish processing and marketing, boat building and net making,” (FAO, 2015) as well as labor-intensive activities that are coupled with relatively low productivity (Béné et al., 2015). Globally, 120 million people work directly in commercial capture fisheries, but greater than 90% of these work in small-scale fisheries, 97% of whom live in developing countries (FAO, 2015). Almost half of people working in small-scale fisheries are women, the majority of whom work in the post-capture activities of processing and selling (FAO, 2015). Although their activities do not often contribute significantly to gross national products, small-scale fisheries provide important livelihoods, economies, nutrition, and food-security for many local communities (Bravo-Olivas et al., 2015; Chavez-Dagostino et al., 2018; Weeratunge et al., 2014). Small-scale fishers around the world have been recognized as a vulnerable population sector (Béné et al., 2007; Cruz-Romero et al., 1991; FAO, 2015, 2019a,b; Kittinger, 2013; McGoodwin, 2001), including environmental, income, health, working conditions, and political marginalization dimensions (Béné et al., 2015).
As such, small-scale fisheries deserve important attention to maintain these livelihoods and manage their associated fisheries. This special session will examine the livelihoods of small-scale fishers in Latin America and the Caribbean. We welcome papers that focus on all geographical areas in Latin America and the Caribbean, particularly those that focus on women in small-scale fisheries, fishers’ relationship to their fisheries resources, small-scale fisheries and tourism, major issues faced by small scale fishers, and those that suggest management solutions.

Keywords: small-scale fisheries, livelihoods, Latin America, caribbean