TBTI: Call for contributions for a book on Canadian SSF

Originally article originally posted at Too Big To Ignore.

‘Thinking Big about Small-Scale Fisheries in Canada’

This e-book calls for research and perspectives on small-scale fisheries in Canada. We seek overviews, stories, and insights about actions local fisheries and fishing communities are taking to sustain themselves while dealing with changes. The United Nations General Assembly has declared 2022: The International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture. Around the world, community leaders and researchers are preparing to emphasize the contributions of small-scale fisheries to seafood production, food security, and well-being. The 2022 designation highlights the need to sustain small-scale fisheries within a future defined by dynamic changes to fish stocks, livelihoods, and communities. This e-book will constitute a substantial effort for the 2022 celebration to highlight the perspectives, challenges, and opportunities for small-scale fisheries in Canada.

Are there small-scale fisheries in Canada? What do they look like? How are they doing? How are they treated? This e-book seeks to co-create answers to these questions. An initial scan reveals the diversity of Canada’s fishing sector. For example, small-scale fisheries may include subsistence Arctic fisheries, and food fisheries across Canada’s lakes, rivers, deltas, and coastal areas. Important fisheries based in Treaty Rights may be considered as small-scale fisheries, such as Food, Social, and Ceremonial fisheries or Moderate Livelihood fisheries. Independently owned and smaller boat commercial fishing can be found on the Pacific coast, Atlantic coast, and the lakes in between. Those may also be considered small-scale fisheries. Let us work together to scope out small-scale fisheries in Canada, and see how big and important they are, so that we can contribute to elevating their profiles and expanding knowledge and information about them. In the current context interest about sustainable ocean development is heightened and Canada is planning the Blue Economy program. This book can contribute to enhancing small-scale fisheries’ active participation in the planning process that will define their futures.

Through this e-book, we begin to build an extensive information-sharing network and research programme with and for small-scale fishery leaders, researchers, and advocates. This approach has been useful for coordinating efforts to bring awareness and advance viability for small-scale fisheries and fishing communities in the Global North (e.g., Japan, Li and Namikawa 2020; United Kingdom, Korda et al. 2021; mainland Europe, Pascuel-Fernándes et al. 2020).

We are seeking contributions in the form of written essays and stories (up to 4,000 words) with visual images, videos, and/or audio recordings that describe challenging changes and opportunities to address and anticipate change in local governance. Topics of the essays and stories can include economic, social and cultural contributions of Canadian small-scale fisheries to communities and economies at the local, national and global level. We are also interested in historical or recent policies and institutions changes, which may have shifted and shaped small-scale fisheries in Canada. Finally, we welcome contribution about efforts, strategies, and local governance taken by all actors to address these changes.

As part of the e-book content and structure, we aim to make small-scale fisheries in Canada more visible. Contributors are asked to answer a 20-question template (where appropriate) to provide a basic overview of the fishery in addition to their essay or story. Multiple perspectives and knowledges (e.g., Indigenous and local knowledge, empirical research, and reflections) are welcome. Contributions that engage broadly—fishing industry, communities, civil society, and academia— are encouraged. We hope you will work together, building or enriching new partnerships based on shared interests for fisheries in Canada. The e-book will be published as part of TBTI Global E-book series and will be free and open access. The e-book will be widely disseminated through TBTI network.