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Finding a middle way to develop Europe’s fisheries dependent areas: the role of Fisheries Local Action Groups

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jeremy Phillipson



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


Axis 4 of the European Fisheries Fund is an important new opportunity for fishing communities which offers the prospect of integrating local territorial approaches and strategies to support the fishing sector. But what does it mean to find a 'middle way' where households, businesses and localities dependent on fishing are part of an integrated strategy for local territorial development? In this paper we review these models of development and draw on case study findings to discuss how Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs) provide lessons for the future. The paper reveals a need for greater clarity regarding the intended beneficiaries and overarching novel purpose of Axis 4 and sets out an original typology of fisheries dependency to help guide local strategies. Looking beyond local impacts, the paper argues that the success of the initiative may be judged in terms of how far steering a middle course can contribute to the broader transformation of fisheries policy and to what extent FLAGs can play a role in evidencing the resilience and vulnerabilities of fishing communities.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Phillipson J, Symes D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Sociologia Ruralis

Year: 2015

Volume: 55

Issue: 3

Pages: 343-359

Print publication date: 01/07/2015

Online publication date: 01/07/2015

Acceptance date: 09/04/2015

Date deposited: 20/07/2015

ISSN (print): 0038-0199

ISSN (electronic): 1467-9523

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/soru.12098

Notes: Published in Special Issue: Resilience and Adaptation of Fishing Communities


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