Development and Urbanization
Fisher folk in both Southeast Asia and Sub-Sahara Africa have faced multiple challenges such as persistent poverty, overfishing, emerging climate change impacts, and coastal environmental degradation. Also, while fisher folk constitute important parts of rural areas in many countries, they find it hard to attraction attention and support from government agencies and the general public. Farmers usually occupy a somewhat more central position within national political economies as well as within political geographical constellations. This paper offers a comparative analysis of the plight of fisher folk in the Philippines, Thailand, Tanzania and Ghana and it focuses on shifting poverty dynamics, frictions between top-down and bottom-up initiatives and multidimensional vulnerabilities. The following questions are addressed: What are the relationships between climate change impacts and other environmental pressures? What has been the adaptive capacity of coastal communities to deal with multiple challenges? And to what extent and how have local community support structures been able to mitigate adverse impacts? The results are based upon a comprehensive empirical analysis involving approximately 800 surveys complemented by semi-structured interviews, conducted in eight research areas (two in each country).