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Report of the Workshop on Participatory Approaches and Traditional Fishery Management Practices in West Africa







Satia, B.P. and B.W. Horemans, Report of the Workshop on Participatory Approaches and 1995 Traditional Fishery Management Pratices in West Africa. Conakry, Guinea, 13-15 November 1995. Cotonou, Prosramme for the Integrated Development of Artisanal Fisheries in West Africa. 96p.,


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    Development strategy during the 1960 and 1970s was based on the philosophy that developing countries lacked improved technology and capital for speeding up their development:Industrialization was promoted in order to capitalize on the abundant fish resources. However, the anticipated expansion of the economy did not happen and the development approach shifted towards an integrated rural strategy where emphasis is put on the community as a whole to upgrade incomes and the quality of life throug h technical assistance and the active participation of fisherfolk and the community. In this context, emphasis was initially placed on the Community Fishery Centre (CFC)concept as a means of promoting artisanal fishery development. But it became apparent that the presence of a complex of facilities and seivices tailored to meet local needs was no guarantee that the structures/facilities would be used or that development would occur. The active participation of fisherfolk and the mobilisation o f local and community resources was imperative in order to assure sustainability of initiatives undertaken by development projects and/or the community. So far and in general terms, the IDAF Programme has worked under the context of abundant or seemingly adequate fishery resources with moderate population pressure. The scenario is however changing (and very fast for that matter) and wewou!d soon face the triple constraints of reduced or depleting fish stocks, degrading environment and increa sing population pressure. Like in other sectors, it must be anticipated that just to survive, parts of the population surplus in the fishing communities will enter the artisanal fisheries, which will increase the competition for the resources among the small scale fisherfolk in addition to the prevailing competition between the artisanal and industrial fisheries, with their attendant effect on the environment.This scenario calls for a côntinuation of the integrated participatory strategy whi ch remains relevant to the development of artisanal fisheries in West Africa. However, the emphasis needs to be placed on the elements and mechanisms that favour the ustainability of initiatives:responsible fishing, the empowerment processes that ensure the devolution of major resource management and development decisions to the local community, the strengthening of national human and institutional capacities at all levels for a sustainable and equitable fisheries resources management and development, as well as in the follow-up and consolidation of past achievements.
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    Development strategy during the 1960 and i 970s was based on the philosophy that developing countries lacked improved technology and capital for speeding up their development:Industrialization was promoted in order to capitalize on the abundant fish resources. However, the anticipated expansion of the economy did not happen and the development approach shifted towards an integrated rural strategy where emphasis is put on the community as a whole to upgrade incomes and the quality of life throu gh technical assistance and the active participation of fisherfolk and the community. In this context, emphasis was initially placed on the Community Fishery Centre (CFC) concept as a means of promoting artisanal fishery development. But it became apparent that the presence of a complex of facilities and seivices tailored to meet local needs was no guarantee that the structures/facilities would be used or that development would occur. The active participation of fisherfolk and the mobilisation of local and community resources was imperative in order to assure sustainability of initiatives undertaken by development projects and/or the community. So far and in general terms, the IDAF Programme has worked under the context of abundant or seemingly adequate fishery resources with moderate population pressure. The scenario is however changing (and very fast for that matter) and wewould soon face the triple constraints of reduced or depleting fish stocks, degrading environment and incr easing population pressure. Like in other sectors, it must be anticipated that just to survive, parts of the population surplus in the fishing communities will enter the artisanal fisheries, which will increase the competition for the resources among the small scale fisherfolk in addition to the prevailing competition between the artisanal and industrial fisheries, with their attendant effect on the environment.
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    Development strategy during the 1960 and 1970s was based on the philosophy that developing countries lacked improved technology and capital for speeding up their development.Industrialization was promoted in order to capitalize on the abundant fish resources. However, the anticipated expansion of the economy did not happen and the development approach shifted towards an integrated rural strategy where emphasis is put on the community as a whole to upgrade incomes and the quality of life throug h technical assistance and the active participation of fisherfolk and the community. In this context, emphasis was initially placed on the Community Fishery Centre (CFC) concept as a means of promoting artisanal fishery development. But it became apparent that the presence of a complex of facilities and seivices tailored to meet local needs was no guarantee that the structures/facilities would be used or that development would occur. The active participation of fisherfolk and the mobilisation of local and community resources was imperative in order to assure sustainability of initiatives undertaken by development projects and/or the community.

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