The Small-Scale Fisheries of Indigenous Peoples: A Struggle for Secure Tenure Rights

Svein Jentoft, Natasha Stacey, Jackie Sunde, Miguel González

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The UN estimates that there are about 370 million indigenous people worldwide. Indigenous people often find their natural resources, cultures, and communities under pressure. In many instances, they are victims of systemic discrimination and human rights abuse. Indigenous people who draw their livelihood from small-scale fishing are no exception to this rule. The recognition of their terrestrial and marine tenure rights is often lacking, which has repercussions for their short and long-term wellbeing. In this chapter, we explore the political and legal foundation of indigenous small-scale fisheries, drawing from international and domestic law, and learning from situations in four countries: Norway, Australia, South Africa and Nicaragua. What institutional reforms would facilitate the self-determination and sustainable economic development of indigenous small-scale fisheries, given that they are not only a marginalized group within their countries, but also within their industry? What prospects exist for the international legislation having real influence on the livelihoods of small-scale fishers and fish workers in indigenous communities? What role can customary law play in this respect?
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransdisciplinarity for Small-Scale Fisheries Governance
Subtitle of host publicationAnalysis and Practice
EditorsRatana Chuenpagdee, Svein Jentoft
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9783319949383
ISBN (Print)9783319949376
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Publication series

NameMARE Publication Series 21


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