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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Ecological Economics, Volume 70, Issue 11, 15 September 2011, Pages 2114–2123
The Community Based Fisheries Management (CBFM) approach has made a significant contribution towards improvement of fishers' empowerment of inland openwater fisheries in Bangladesh aiming to manage their resources efficiently. This arrangement introduced CBFM approaches named fisher-led, community-led and women-led approach. A wider range of local institutional arrangements as community based organizations (CBOs) have been established through participatory process with legal entity. Now, the CBOs as local institutions and fishers are more empowered in participation of fishery management under co-management arrangement. The study reveals that there is still lack of institutional arrangement to be achieved at optimum level. This paper presents and assesses the empowerment status of the fisher communities in inland openwater fisheries under co-management arrangement in Bangladesh through Factor analysis and regression model. This study might have policy implication to replicate the community based fishery management approach to promote empowerment for better management
The central element of co-management is the empowerment of the community of local resource users (e.g., fishers) by enabling them to participate, control and influence institutional decisions affecting their lives (Maliao et al., 2009). Empowerment through co-management means greater involvement and greater participation of fisher communities and it seeks to empower the weak and less privileged co-management based institutions to allow them to freely participate in and collaborate on management (Berkes et al., 2001). Common property theorists have argued that increasing governance and democracy step up to empower the poor fisher communities rather than strengthen them in power (Ahmed et al., 2006). Empowerment is a mechanism by which community and organizations gain mastery over their affairs (Rappaport, 1987). On the other hand, empowerment is a part of way forward to be challenged and changed institutional arrangement to improve fishers' access and management to their resources (Nunan, 2006). With regard to fishery co-management, Nielson et al. (2004) defined empowerment as a mechanism to give participants a change to influence their own future within the fishing communities. On the other hand, organization practicing empowerment can handle conflict constructively. In practice, community empowerment and co-management are closely related and if there is no empowerment, there is no co-management. Thus, building community is essential to empowerment, it is essential to co-management. According to Pomeroy and Viswanathan (2003), successful co-management and effective partnerships can occur when the community is empowered and organized. Furthermore, Sowman et al. (2003) stated that empowerment is secured when resource users are in a position to participate as equal partners in negotiations, give input on management decisions and ultimately achieve self-control. On the other hand, Jentoft et al. (2003) argued that empowerment would be concerned with the redistribution of the power and it works at the level of the group, the community and the nation which interchange between the levels. However, empowerment is both a condition and a goal of fishery co-management, and empowerment must occur at both at an individual and collective level for fishery co-management to become sustainable (Jentoft, 2005). Empowerment even applies to the formation of institutional arrangements for governance. Capacity building and institutional building are both necessary for empowerment to fishers. Empowerment is concerned with capability building of individual and the community levels in order for them to have greater social awareness, to gain greater autonomy over decision making, to gain greater self-reliance, and in establishing a balance in community power relations (Pomeroy et al., 2001 and Wiber et al., 2009). Again, Wiber et al. (2009) reported that inter-community linkages should be encouraged and developed from the outset as this will result in more resilient local capacity. Fishers are empowered when it becomes possible for them to sustainably manage their fishery and capacity building is a means by which this may be accomplished (Jentoft, 2003). Nielson et al. (2004) stated that empowering co-management approach is a demanding concept, as it requires a major restructuring of the institutional and organizational arrangements supporting management and capacity-building at several levels both within government and fishing communities. Institutions constitute the central element in co-management intervention and institutions are important prerequisites to effective co-management, and form which decisions are made and collective action is taken (Kalikoski et al., 2002 and Noble, 2000). Ostrom (2005) stated that Institutional arrangements such as co-management systems is considered in fishery management as a way of decentralizing resource management decisions, improving participatory democracy and compliance. According to Ostrom (2005), actors are more likely to establish a robust or a viable and stable co-manage regime if the institutional arrangements are characterized by the eight design principles. On the other hand, Institutional arrangements have emerged to secure an expanded role to democratize decision making, foster conflict resolution, and encourage stakeholders' participation (Armitage et al., 2007). Armitage, et al. (2007) also stated that co-management arrangements often involve institutional building at local level in developing countries that results in building institutional capacity, problem solving networking, in short building social capital. The Community Based Fisheries Management (CBFM) project has been implemented in Bangladesh. It was expected that CBFM approach through improved linkages and partnership among government, NGOs and fisher communities in wetland fishery systems will promote empowerment for management of inland openwater fisheries. Through this intervention, GO-NGO-Fisher partnership and local institutions have been established to accelerate empowerment of the fisher communities. Empirical evidence suggest that fishers have increased empowerment and greater participation in decision-making due to CBFM approach (Thompson, 2004). The objective of this paper is to assess the empowerment status of the fisher communities in inland openwater fisheries under co-management arrangement in Bangladesh. The paper is based on a study in 12 fishing communities within CMFM project sites in Bangladesh. In this study Factor analysis was used to determine factors of local community participation in relation to resource use that are practiced for empowerment according to local community members' opinion. The results of Factor analysis have been used in Regression analysis.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The study reveals that the level of fishers' empowerment in inland openwater fishery management in Bangladesh has improved significantly within CBFM project areas. It is imperative to look at the level of decision-making capacity of the community. This capacity will not enhance automatically, unless they are empowered to take decisions free from any external influence. The participation of fishers in decision-making is ensured mostly by the CBFM arrangements. Fishers' greater participation and democratic process promoted empowerment of the fishers. A wide range of institutional arrangements have been practiced in CBFM project areas and institutional arrangement is likely to be associated with better performance of empowerment. It is found that fisher communities of community-led approach have better institutional arrangement in comparison to other fisher communities of fisher-led and women-led approach. Empowerment should incorporate social issues and therefore the process of empowerment must be fully participatory. But it needed participatory fishery management policy of government, NGOs, fishers and involved other stakeholders. On the other hand, continued support from government and NGOs and political commitment are required to improve fishers' empowerment that has not graduated. The findings of the study can be used as inputs for policy makers to formulate future policy regarding inland openwater fishery management. It would also be important to note that there are certain elements, which would contribute to the process of empowerment of the fisher community such as: organizing the community in small groups, resource allocation, financial activity (savings, credit and income generation activities), literacy course, training in the fields of general awareness raising, skill development and organizational development, democratic participation in forming CBOs' leadership and decision-making process. The major implication of this study is that CBFM approach improves the empowerment of the fisher communities. To be successful CBFM approach, it must focus on fishers' empowerment for improved fisheries' resource management. The findings of this study support the establishment of co-management based organizations (CBOs) representing the fishers of the fisheries. These CBOs are viewed as primary instruments as local institutions in building and sustaining the co-management process and the CBOs have played a critical role in this process. Continued support by the government is required for sustainability of existing CBOs. The findings also highlight the need for participatory fishery management policies of government, NGOs and involved other stakeholders which will ensure the sustainability of CBFM approaches towards empowerment of fisher communities. Improving empowerment of fisher communities and CBOs could help to build up compliance, legitimacy and effective conflict resolution.