Socioeconomic thresholds that affect use of customary fisheries management tools

Cinner, Joshua E., Sutton, Stephen G., and Bond, Trevor G. (2007) Socioeconomic thresholds that affect use of customary fisheries management tools. Conservation Biology, 21 (6). pp. 1603-1611.

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Customary forms of resource management, such as taboos, have received considerable attention as a potential basis for conservation initiatives in the Indo-Pacific. Yet little is known about how socioeconomic factors influence the ability of communities to use customary management practices and whether socioeconomic transformations within communities will weaken conservation initiatives with a customary foundation. We used a comparative approach to examine how socioeconomic factors may influence whether communities use customary fisheries management in Papua New Guinea. We examined levels of material wealth (modernization), dependence on marine resources, population, and distance to market in 15 coastal communities. We compared these socioeconomic conditions in 5 communities that used a customary method of closing their fishing ground with 10 communities that did not use this type of management. There were apparent threshold levels of dependence on marine resources, modernization, distance to markets (<16.5 km), and population (>600 people) beyond which communities did not use customary fisheries closures. Nevertheless, economic inequality, rather than mean modernization levels seemed to influence the use of closures. Our results suggest that customary management institutions are not resilient to factors such as population growth and economic modernization. If customary management is to be used as a basis for modern conservation initiatives, cross-scale institutional arrangements such as networks and bridging organizations may be required to help filter the impacts of socioeconomic transformations.

Item ID: 2289
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1523-1739
Keywords: common property; customary resource management; social thresholds; coral reefs; Papua New Guinea
Additional Information:

Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2009 04:37
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1604 Human Geography > 160403 Social and Cultural Geography @ 70%
07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070403 Fisheries Management @ 15%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 15%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9613 Remnant Vegetation and Protected Conservation Areas > 961303 Protected Conservation Areas in Marine Environments @ 100%
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