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Overcoming the lack of political will in small scale fisheries


  • Carbonetti, Benjamin
  • Pomeroy, Robert
  • Richards, David L.


Weak governance is one of the main causes of the present poor condition of fisheries ecosystems. Lack of political will is one of the primary factors characterizing weak governance in fisheries. The purpose of this paper is to better understand what is meant by political will and political capacity, what the lack of these means in reference to small scale fisheries governance, and how to overcome the lack of political will, in particular, in order to improve small scale fisheries governance. The paper demonstrates the importance of political will and political capacity in determining the quality of fisheries management. Existent scholarship has largely conceptualized political will and political capacity as being the same concept, thus muddying our ability to determine exactly what is limiting a state's ability to manage not only fisheries, but also environmental resources more-generally. The paper concludes that even in low capacity states, local champions of fishery management can affect moderate progress on this complicated issue if they use community networks to engage in enforcement of fishery policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Carbonetti, Benjamin & Pomeroy, Robert & Richards, David L., 2014. "Overcoming the lack of political will in small scale fisheries," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 295-301.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:marpol:v:44:y:2014:i:c:p:295-301
    DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2013.09.020

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Mauricio Cardenas, 2010. "State Capacity in Latin America," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Spring 20), pages 1-45, January.
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    5. Alex Braithwaite, 2010. "Resisting infection: How state capacity conditions conflict contagion," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 47(3), pages 311-319, May.
    6. Cullen S Hendrix, 2010. "Measuring state capacity: Theoretical and empirical implications for the study of civil conflict," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 47(3), pages 273-285, May.
    7. Pomeroy, Robert & Garces, Len & Pido, Michael & Silvestre, Geronimo, 2010. "Ecosystem-based fisheries management in small-scale tropical marine fisheries: Emerging models of governance arrangements in the Philippines," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 298-308, March.
    8. Hauck, Maria & Kroese, Marcel, 2006. "Fisheries compliance in South Africa: A decade of challenges and reform 1994-2004," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 74-83, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Herrera-Racionero, Paloma & Lizcano-Fernández, Emmánuel & Miret-Pastor, Lluís, 2015. "“Us” and “them”. Fishermen from Gandía and the loss of institutional legitimacy," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 130-136.
    2. Resnick, Danielle & Okumo, Austen, 2017. "Subnational Variation in Policy Implementation: The Case of Nigerian Land Governance Reform," Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Security Policy Research Papers 265412, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics, Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Security (FSP).
    3. Alabsi, Natheer & Komatsu, Teruhisa, 2014. "Characterization of fisheries management in Yemen: A case study of a developing country׳s management regime," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(PA), pages 89-95.
    4. Kumawat, Tarachand & Shenoy, Latha & Chakraborty, Sushant K. & Deshmukh, Vinay D. & Raje, Sadashiv G., 2015. "Compliance of bag net fishery of Maharashtra coast, India with Article 7 of the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 9-15.


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