WorldFish Center Publishes Papers on Adaptation and Vulnerability of Inland Fisheries in Africa

May 2010: The WorldFish Center has released papers on adaptation of floodplain fishing communities to climate change in the Niger basin and on vulnerability in inland fishing communities in Africa.

On adaptation in the Niger basin, the report notes that the Sahel is undergoing reduced floodplain inundation due to dam construction and increased interannual rainfall variation. It highlights the inability of fishers to migrate in order to cope with environmental change and the challenges of shifting to an agriculturally-based economy. The paper underscores that livelihood and income diversification strategies are insufficient for coping with hydro-climactic changes. It calls for adoption of strategies that support migration of floodplain fishers to manmade reservoirs.

The paper on vulnerability in inland fishing communities underscores the need to consider that household vulnerability is related to: natural resource systems; local livelihoods; external drivers; and institutions and governance systems. It suggests that interventions should prioritize these four issues. Field data collection revealed that fishery resource vulnerability was less important to households than general food security and access to health education and credit. The paper highlights that considerations related to short-term survival take precedence over long-term stability. It notes that before addressing resource vulnerability, projects must focus on short-term needs of local communities. WorldFish Center is a member of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). [Adaptation in Niger Basin Report] [Vulnerability in Inland Fishing Communities]