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Nature Environmental Conservation & Protection

Finding Our Sea Legs

Linking Fishery People and Their Knowledge with Science and Management

edited by Barbara Neis & Lawrence Felt

ISER Books
Initial publish date
Apr 2000
Environmental Conservation & Protection
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2000
    List Price

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The global fisheries crisis has prompted widespread debate about the origins of overfishing in managed fisheries. Criticisms of existing systems of science and management have led to experimental approaches involving access to fishery workers and their knowledge. Finding Our Sea Legs is an edited collection of theoretical discussions and case studies of such experiments, with a particular focus on the North Atlantic.

Significant institutional changes are required to involve fishery workers and their knowledge in fisheries science and management. Fundamental differences between stock assessment science and fishers' knowledge require new methods for combining and interpreting information. Management structures, industrial and resource management strategies and technological change could affect the nature and quality of information derived from fishery workers. Such impacts need to be assessed.

This extensive interdisciplinary overview will be useful to students, fishers, community leaders, social and natural scientists, managers and environmentalists with an interest in fisheries science and management.

About the authors

Barbara Neis is an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, Memorial Univeristy. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in 1988. She has researched many aspects of the Newfoundland and Labrador fisheries and has begun linking that research with international fisheries-related developments. Her current areas of research include the health impacts of restructuring in the Newfoundland and Labrador fisheries (funded by Health Canada and by the National Network on Environments and Women's Health) and local ecological knowledge and science (funded by Eco-Research and SSHRC projects). She recieved Memorial University's President's Award for Outstanding Research in 1998. 

Barbara Neis' profile page

Lawrence Felt is a Professor in the Department of Sociology at Memorial University. He earned a doctorate in Sociology and Health Policy from Northwestern University. During this career he has researched issues of development and change in rural Newfoundland, Iceland, and other North Atlantic Societies. Along with Dr. Barbara Neis he has completed a study of fishery workers' ecological knowledge and its relationship to fisheries science (funded by the Tri-Council and SSHRC). 

Lawrence Felt's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"The book should find readers from a wide range of those who have a concern for natural resources. Wider still, there is a growing number of people in the social sciences and the natural sciences who are trying to understand what has been happening to knowledge systems over the last two or three decades. They too will discover here much that is instructive."

Brian Elliot, University of British Columbia

"This is a book that everyone with an interest in maritime or natural resources in general should read. It introduces new possibilities in resource management and sustainable development."

Hrefna Karlsdottir, International Journal of Maritime History

Other titles by Barbara Neis

Other titles by Lawrence Felt