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A complicated relationship: Stakeholder participation and the ecosystem-based approach to fisheries management

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Tim Gray, Jenny Hatchard



The relationship between stakeholder participation (SP) and the ecosystem-based approach to fisheries management (EBAFM) is often taken for granted, but is actually very complicated. The literature reveals five possible interpretations of this relationship: that they are 1) logically linked; 2) ethically linked; 3) instrumentally linked; 4) complementarily linked; and 5) antagonistically linked. We examine these five formulations in the light of recent research on interactions between fisheries and their environment, on the basis of which we conclude that the SP/EBAFM relationship manifests itself as predominantly instrumental in character. Within this mutually beneficial, but uneven, relationship, ecosystem-based management benefits particularly from stakeholder participation in terms of knowledge; practical roles played by stakeholders; and added legitimacy. Complementary and ethical links between ecosystem-based management and stakeholder participation are less common but, respectively, command pragmatic and moral force. Logical links do exist, but mainly at the conceptual level, while there is very little evidence that SP and EBAFM are mutual antagonists

Publication metadata

Author(s): Gray TS, Hatchard JL

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Marine Policy

Year: 2008

Volume: 32

Issue: 2

Pages: 158-168

Date deposited: 13/08/2010

ISSN (print): 0308-597X

ISSN (electronic): 1872-9460

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2007.09.002

Notes: Tim Gray's contribution = 50%


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