Micro-level explanations for emergent patterns of self-governance arrangements in small-scale fisheries-A modeling approach.
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Small-scale fisheries (SSFs) in developing countries are expected to play a significant role in poverty alleviation and enhancing food security in the decades to come. To realize this expectation, a better understanding of their informal self-governance arrangements is critical for developing policies that can improve fishers' livelihoods and lead to sustainable ecosystem stewardship. The goal of this paper is to develop a more nuanced understanding of micro-level factors-such as fishers' characteristics and behavior-to explain observed differences in self-governance arrangements in Northwest Mexico. We focus on two ubiquitous forms of self-governance: hierarchical non-cooperative arrangements between fishers and fishbuyers, such as patron-client relationships (PCs), versus more cooperative arrangements amongst fishers, such as fishing cooperatives (co-ops). We developed an agent-based model of an archetypical SSF that captures key hypotheses from in-depth fieldwork in Northwest Mexico of fishers' day-to-day fishing and trading. Results from our model indicate that high diversity in fishers' reliability, and low initial trust between co-op members, makes co-ops' establishment difficult. PCs cope better with this kind of diversity because, in contrast to co-ops, they have more flexibility in choosing whom to work with. However, once co-ops establish, they cope better with seasonal variability in fish abundance and provide long-term security for the fishers. We argue that existing levels of trust and diversity among fishers matter for different self-governance arrangements to establish and persist, and should therefore be taken into account when developing better, targeted policies for improved SSFs governance.
Conservation of Natural Resources
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1371/journal.pone.0175532
Publication InfoBasurto, Xavier; Lindkvist, Emilie; & Schlüter, Maja (2017). Micro-level explanations for emergent patterns of self-governance arrangements in small-scale fisheries-A modeling approach. PloS one, 12(4). pp. e0175532. 10.1371/journal.pone.0175532. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/18611.
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Associate Professor of Sustainability Science
I am interested in the fundamental question of how groups (human and non-human) can find ways to self-organize, cooperate, and engage in successful collective action for the benefit of the common good. To do this I strive to understand how the institutions (formal and informal rules and norms) that govern social behavior, interplay with biophysical variables to shape social-ecological systems. What kind of institutions are better able to govern complex-adaptive systems? and how can societies (la