The Japanese Consolidation Movement: Changing Notions of Territoriality in Coastal Japan Public Deposited

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  • The Japanese system of local management has been heralded as a successful system for managing coastal resources. Despite such general success, however, fishing cooperatives and their respective members currently face internal and external pressures from over-fishing, pollution, and life in an industrialized society. Further, the Japanese government has pushed for the consolidation of management groups in society - including Fishing Cooperative Associations (FCAs). This article examines the effects of the consolidation (gappei) movement on the structure of Japanese fishing cooperative associations and the lives of cooperative members, especially in regards to members' changing notions of territoriality. One case study is presented from Northeastern Japan where environmental and societal difficulties have pushed FCA members to informally alter their management practices. FCA members in Shichigahama, in central Miyagi Prefecture, consolidated local FCAs in 1999, have as of yet refused to officially allow 'outsiders' direct access to individual fishing territories. The reasons for the refusal of Shichigahama fishers to officially alter territories and the issues surrounding their view will be presented. Despite pressure from the central government, consolidation is not an easy path; nor is the result necessarily predictable, as the Shichigahama case shows. The paper concludes with the reminder that notions of territoriality change as local conditions change.
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  • Delaney, Alyne Elizabeth. 2004. The Japanese Consolidation Movement: Changing Notions of Territoriality in Coastal Japan. In: Proceedings of the Twelfth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, July 20-30, 2004, Tokyo, Japan: What are Responsible Fisheries? Compiled by Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, Corvallis, Oregon, USA, 2004. CD ROM. ISBN 0-9763432-0-7
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