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Customary marine tenure systems and sustainable fisheries management in Papua New Guinea

John Asafu‐Adjaye (Department of Economics, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia)

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Article publication date: 1 July 2000



Takes a critical look at a current model of fisheries management which is based on principles related to Hardin’s “Tragedy of the Commons”. According to this model, where access to a fishery is free, it is not in the interest of the community to limit their fishing effort. To prevent over‐fishing and eventual destruction of fish stocks, fisheries managers in Papua New Guinea (PNG) have concentrated their efforts on imposing limits on fishing effort. Argues that such methods are bound to fail because they are imposed by outsiders and are alien to the local communities. Argues that customary marine tenure systems have a better chance of success in the management of local fisheries resources because they are community‐based and are derived from kinship and lineage structures. Advocates that, rather than overlooking such systems, governments must strengthen them to enable them to play their role in sustainable fisheries management.



Asafu‐Adjaye, J. (2000), "Customary marine tenure systems and sustainable fisheries management in Papua New Guinea", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 27 No. 7/8/9/10, pp. 917-927.




Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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