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Women’s position in blue economy

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  • The fisheries sector is a vital oceanic resource that build the core of the Blue Economy. However the realization of the full potential of the Blue Economy calls the requirement of effective inclusion of all societal groups, especially women whose contribution is not well acknowledged. The study focused to investigate the fisherwomen’s contribution on decision making, participation and governance in production, marketing and investment and to measure the fisherwomen’s share in consumer rupee and also to find out the opportunities for traditional fisherwomen into professional careers. Questionnaires, field observations, participatory mapping, telephone interviews were applied to collect the primary data. The sample composed of 5 case studies of selected fishing communities in Sri Lanka; Kudawella, Gandara, Ambalangoda, Beruwala and Jaffna. The results revealed that the decision making power was concentrated among males. Maldive fish value chain was female dominated but pricing and investment decisions were influenced by the males members of the family. The women’s contribution towards investment decisions was poor. Fisherwomen share in consumer rupee of Maldive fish and Dried Tuna Fish ranged from 3.7- 3.9% and 8.5-10% respectively. The results indicated that the superfluous involvement of intermediaries keeps female-fishers and markets separated and discouraging them to be market responsive. The results further revealed a paradigm shift of women in these fishing communities from traditional fishing activities into recreational activities, tourism and higher education. Gender empowerment interventions on both hard and soft skills development were considered as an essential requirement to exploit the unrivalled opportunities in the blue economy.
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  • Seattle, Washington, USA
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