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Co-Management of Fisheries Through a Negotiation Lens: The Case of Prud’homies

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While the European Union’s fishing policy is mainly based on maximum sustainable yield, at the local fishing community level, fishers’ main incentive to sustain fish stocks appears to be maintenance of social relationships. Divergence of the stakeholders’ objectives on the management of marine resources creates conflicts of interest that can be overcome through a process of negotiation. The formulation of the solution is embedded in the perspective of the stakeholders. In this paper we analyze the negotiation mechanisms between the French Mediterranean local fishing communities and the European Union common fishery policy. Inspired by interactive governance theory, the performance of Prud’homies, a local governance entity in the French Mediterranean, has been analyzed through their capacity to cooperate and represent the fishers’ voice in formal institutes. We are witnessing a declining representation of this local institute among the official decision-makers of the marine resource governance.

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Fig. 1


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    For a complete discussion on tools for assessing the changes in the governing system and the system to be governed refer to Chuenpagdee and Mahon (2013).

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    P. Osmont, Paris

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    Modifying the decree of 9 January 1852 on the exercise of marine fishery.

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    Regulations on maritime coastal fishery in the 5th maritime area (arrondissement de Toulon).


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We acknowledge the support of the European Commission under Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate Programme. Many thanks to Michaël Trope, scientific investigator at National Institute of Agricultural Research at SupAgro-Montpellier for creating an atmosphere of trust between the research group, fishers and official organizations of fishery management. We are grateful to the editor and referees for helpful comments, interesting reviews and editorial advice. We would also like to thank Anna Snider for the English language editing.


This work was conducted as part of a PhD thesis supported by the Agricultural Transformation by Innovation (AGTRAIN) Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate Program, funded by the EACEA (Education, Audiovisual, and Culture Executive Agency) of the European Commission, grant number 2015–006.

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Soltanpour, Y., Peri, I. & Temri, L. Co-Management of Fisheries Through a Negotiation Lens: The Case of Prud’homies. Maritime Studies (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40152-020-00165-3

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  • Participation
  • Voice
  • Local fishing community
  • Interactive governance