The Value of Values for Understanding Transdisciplinary Approaches to Small-Scale Fisheries

  • Derek S. JohnsonEmail author
  • Annie Lalancette
  • Mimi E. Lam
  • Marta Leite
  • Sölmundur K. Pálsson
Part of the MARE Publication Series book series (MARE, volume 21)


The key lesson values bring to transdisciplinarity is that the latter should not be confused with synthesis. Rather, a careful theoretically-informed consideration of values suggests that engagements across difference – disciplinary, fisher and non-fisher, policy-maker and activist, male and female, wealthy and poor, etcetera – are necessarily extremely difficult. They involve challenging, and often failed, efforts to translate between varying perceptions, paradigms, and priorities. Communications among those who are different from one another are tricky and subject to accumulating histories that may bring actors together, but may also build suspicion, distrust, and conflict. In this chapter, we do not seek to propose an answer to the process questions of value-sensitive transdisciplinary engagement. Rather, we contrast implicit and explicit approaches to value through six approaches to studying small-scale fisheries: economic valuation; ecosystem services; political economy; social wellbeing; interactive governance; and, post-normal science. This comparative analysis shows not only the benefits, but also the challenges, that are at play in constituting a value-sensitive transdisciplinary approach to small-scale fisheries.


Held values Assigned values Objective values Relational values Translation Knowledge Power Governance 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Derek S. Johnson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Annie Lalancette
    • 2
  • Mimi E. Lam
    • 3
  • Marta Leite
    • 4
  • Sölmundur K. Pálsson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of ManitobaWinnipegCanada
  2. 2.St. Mary’s UniversityHalifaxCanada
  3. 3.Centre for the Study of the Sciences and the HumanitiesUniversity of BergenBergenNorway
  4. 4.Natural Resources InstituteUniversity of ManitobaWinnipegCanada

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