The Second Annual Conference on Gross National Happiness The Second International Conference on Gross National Happiness
Local Pathways to Global Wellbeing
St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada
June 20 to June 24, 2005
  Anthony Charles
Managing Together: Community Fisheries in Canada's Maritimes

Community-based management of natural resources provides a mechanism to transform governance practices, so as to better integrate ecological, socioeconomic, community and institutional sustainability at a local level. Where appropriate, this approach can provide a strong vehicle for resource conservation and sustainable development, through (a) better utilization of traditional ecological knowledge, (b) better acceptance of conservation and compliance with regulations, within suitably-empowered local communities and (c) better conflict resolution among local resource users, within a culturally-suitable context. This paper describes a set of initiatives in Canada's Maritime provinces to develop community fishery approaches. An emphasis is placed on one of these initiatives, Turning the Tide: Communities Managing Fisheries Together, that has helped build linkages between aboriginal and non-native participants in the fishery — motivated by a common desire for community-based management, and by the recent opportunity for aboriginal First Nations to enter the commercial fishery on a community basis. The paper describes the role played in Turning the Tide by three type of activities: (1) workshops, networking and capacity-building; (2) exchange visits, and (3) development of resource materials. The paper also discusses the need for grass-roots initiatives such as this to be complemented by governmental policy and logistic support for community-based management.

Anthony Charles
Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation
Management Science/Environmental Studies
Saint Mary's University
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3H3C3 Canada

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