Reef fisheries and livelihoods in coastal villages of southern Tanzania : Lessons for adaptation to environmental change?
|Other Titles:||Rifffischerei und Lebensunterhalt in Küstendörfen Süd-Tansanias : Lehren für die Anpassung an den Umweltveränderung?||Authors:||Katikiro, Robert Eliakim||Supervisor:||Flitner, Michael||1. Expert:||Flitner, Michael||2. Expert:||Reuter, Hauker||Abstract:||
The crucial importance of the reef fisheries to the livelihoods of communities associated with coastal areas in developing countries cannot be overemphasised. However, these important resources are increasingly threatened by destructive human activities and continued overexploitation. Therefore, understanding how the degradation of fisheries resources increases the vulnerability of the livelihoods of coastal households, and the coping strategies employed by them, is critical for planning sustainable livelihoods. This thesis looks at how households currently residing in coastal villages of the Mtwara district in southern Tanzania an area with a history involving dynamite-fishing activities sustain their livelihoods. In particular, it examines the existing livelihoods strategies, the ways these strategies are developed in response to changing socio-ecological conditions, and how livelihood trajectories of the households can be conceptualised and interpreted in that context. Further, through scenario planning, it examines whether current coping strategies predispose the community to adapt more easily to unprecedented threats of environmental change, more specifically the effects of climate change to their livelihoods. Drawing on perspectives of sustainable livelihoods, and the ideas of political ecology and scenario planning, the study examines the changing nature of livelihood strategies in coastal areas. By combining insights from political ecology and the thinking around sustainable livelihoods, it links a critical review of the degradation of natural resource discourse and policy with micro-level studies, and thus provides an enhanced understanding of the processes of human environment interactions. The fieldwork was carried out in two phases: phase one from February to July 2012, and phase two from November 2012 to January 2013. A mixed-method approach, involving qualitative and quantitative methodology for data collection, was adopted. The main techniques for primary data collection were household survey, key informant interviews, participant observation, focus group discussions and life history interviews. A sample of 297 household heads and 46 key informants were interviewed, and 58 people participated in focus-group discussions. Secondary data were obtained through documentary review. Data were analysed both qualitatively and quantitatively. The findings demonstrate that the majority of study respondents are driven to the trajectory of livelihood diversification for subsistence where gradual improvements in the livelihoods are interspersed with more abrupt declines. It is clear that, despite significant constraints linked to destructive fishing activities, coastal households seem to retain a very high level of agency, which allows them to pursue their own, sometimes contested, economic and political objectives. Different social networks and local village groups appear to play a key role in facilitating this process, however, they offer less evidence in understanding the opportunities that households and individuals have to cope and transform their livelihoods. By presenting scenarios for the future of livelihoods, the thesis argues that although households constantly adjust their adaptive strategies to survive, their coping strategies in their current form are weak in terms of being able to transit to climate-resilient livelihoods. This situation calls for efforts that take more determined approaches towards sustainable livelihoods with particular focus on the role and viability of a natural-resource base to manage risk and build resilience in a changing social, environmental, institutional and political conditions. The results contribute to our understanding of how households negotiate livelihoods under conditions of rapid socio-environmental change and increased vulnerability.
|Keywords:||fisheries, livelihoods, coastal Tanzania,adaptation, environmental change||Issue Date:||15-Dec-2014||URN:||urn:nbn:de:gbv:46-00104183-15||Institution:||Universität Bremen||Faculty:||FB8 Sozialwissenschaften|
|Appears in Collections:||Dissertationen|
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