The International Pole & Line Foundation is delighted to announce that Dr Megan Bailey, Assistant Professor of the Marine Affairs Program at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, has joined our Scientific & Technical Advisory Committee (STAC).
As a fisheries economist, Dr Bailey’s research focuses on establishing links between private market-based initiatives and state governance, for example through certifications and traceability. She therefore sees her primary role within the STAC will be to progress the market potential of one-by-one fisheries by establishing stronger connections with both industry and governments, including increasing the understanding of the ways in which the economic drivers of the former relate to the sustainability policies of the latter.
“I believe IPNLF has a key role to play in this area. It’s really transparent in terms of its goals: Certainly, it wants to see sustainable fisheries, but it sees industry as key to that. To a degree, there’s a demonization of fishermen, certainly in North America and Europe, where a perception exists that they’re pillaging the oceans’ resources. To a large extent, they’re also not recognised as major providers of food for a large proportion of the world. I think IPNLF is a leader in addressing these views because it really works with industry to highlight the good that the sector is doing, and showing that sustainability can come from industry and the markets,” says Dr Bailey.
Another aspect of IPNLF’s work she is keen to progress is increasing the global recognition of the crucial role that women are playing in seafood supply chains.
“I have already spent some time talking with Alice [Dr Alice Miller, IPNLF Social Research & Programme Director], about the gender focus with regards to issues in fisheries and seafood supply chains. It’s not at all my expertise, but it’s something that I believe is going to be a big deal as the social agenda of fisheries continues to move forward, as we have started to see happen over the last couple of years.
“Moving forward, it’s clear we need greater understanding of the role of women, their contribution, and how certain policies impact different fisheries. We need to understand that decisions have an impact on fisher-men, but also on the women who support the industry.
“I am really excited about becoming part of this STAC. I know most of the people in it already and they’re a really good group. I have watched the progression of the IPNLF ever since I went to the first International Coastal Tuna Business Forum in Bali in 2012, and its growth has been incredible. The transparency is something that I really like, along with checks and monitoring that are in place to make sure the organisation continues to move in the right direction,” says Dr Bailey.
The STAC’s main function is to advise IPNLF on how to work towards its primary aim of advancing wellbeing amongst coastal fisheries by increasing the global supply of socially and environmentally responsible one-by-one tuna. The Committee is tasked with helping identify emerging issues in fisheries where IPNLF can provide meaningful engagement and maximum impact.