Deciphering contextual influences on local leadership in community-based fisheries management

Abigail Mary Sutton, Murray Alan Rudd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Community-based fisheries management (CBFM) strategies have been adopted in a variety of small-scale fisheries around the world. Within these management structures, leaders are increasingly regarded as essential for viable CBFM yet systematic analysis into the intricate mechanisms of leadership are limited. This paper aims to identify key knowledge gaps of leadership in CBFM by strategically reviewing research from fisheries and natural resource management, and from other sectors. The focus is on the interaction between leaders, their connections with and beyond their communities, and the context within which leaders function. Insights from over 30 case studies suggest previous work on leaders and leadership generally focused on relatively coarse-scale characteristics of leadership and the functions that leaders perform. Ecological and social context influence leaders׳ ability to help deliver successful CBFM. The personal and professional attributes of leaders themselves may be beneficial or inhibitory for CBFM depending on that context. It is therefore essential that future research builds on current insight in order to decipher the implications of contextual influences on local leadership and, by extension, the level of CBFM success.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-269
JournalMarine policy
Volume50 (Part A)
Early online date2 Aug 2014
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014

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