Policy Coherence with the Small-Scale Fisheries Guidelines: Analysing Across Scales of Governance in Pacific Small-Scale Fisheries

Part of the MARE Publication Series book series (MARE, volume 14)


Concerns about the sustainability of small-scale fisheries, and the equitable distribution of fisheries benefits, are wide-spread within government agencies, non-government organizations, and rural fishing communities throughout Pacific Island Countries and Territories. Addressing these concerns was given renewed impetus in recent years with the completion and adoption of the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries (SSF Guidelines). This global document enters a complex policy landscape within the Pacific region. In anticipation of its region-wide implementation, this chapter focuses on policy coherence; using Solomon Islands as a case we investigate the potential interplay of the SSF Guidelines with priority policies at the regional, national, and sub-national levels. We first examine the SSF Guidelines to identify 22 dominant themes, including human rights, adaptive capacity, and tenure rights. We then focus in on 11 on policy instruments known to directly influence small-scale fisheries governance; we examine to what extent and in which direction the small-scale fisheries themes are represented in these 11 regional, national, and sub-national policies. We find areas of incoherence in addition to nine themes that are relatively poorly represented (‘gaps’) in the current policy landscape. More positively, however, we also observe a large-scale overlap on many of the key themes. While our analysis is specific in its application to Solomon Islands, our approach to diagnose areas of incoherence and gaps is easily applicable to other countries. This type of policy-based analysis is a useful first step to understanding priorities and strategies for implementation, and in particular opportunities for the SSF Guidelines to prompt adjustment and transformation of existing policies.


Policy coherence Multi-scale governance Solomon Islands Oceania Co-management Implementation 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.WorldFishHoniaraSolomon Islands
  2. 2.Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef StudiesJames Cook UniversityTownsvilleAustralia

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