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Title: Fishing the past, managing the future : crisis and change in Shetland fisheries
Author: Ramsay, Alison Kay
ISNI:       0000 0001 3506 9145
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2006
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Throughout the 1990s and into the new millennium fishing communities bordering the North Atlantic have weathered a series of crises.  Based on fieldwork conducted between 2001 and 2003, this thesis examines the problems experienced by those involved in the whitefish sector based in the Shetland Islands.  Challenges facing Shetland fishing peoples during the fieldwork period cut across the social, economic, and ecological spectrum, including: depopulation of peripheral areas, increasing unemployment rates, degradation of the local and regional environment, loss of access to the resource base, bankruptcy of locally based enterprises and a general decline of community spirit. Although Shetland’s whitefish crisis is largely a regional problem it is, at the same time, set against a backdrop of wider issues in fisheries more generally and in European policy processes.  Shetland fisheries come under the jurisdiction of the European Union Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).  The CFP is based on a ‘tragedy of the commons’ thesis that views the enforcement mechanisms of the market and the state as the only means to control fishing industries in line with scientific perceptions of nature and ‘optimum sustainable yields’ of fish resources. Whereas within fisheries management clear distinctions are drawn between people, place, fish stocks and the economy; such distinctions are not markedly apparent at a local level.  Everyday life, for those involved in fishing is contextualised in both historical and contemporary times by fishing.   Shetland fisheries involve particular kinds of knowledge and experience.  These necessarily relate fishing with individuals and the collective identities of local people situated in place. The thesis suggests that a shift is necessary in fisheries management away from a view of humans against nature, towards a form of  management that properly recognises the necessity of regarding people as living within a shared (human and non-human) environment.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available