IPNLF joins global partnership project to enhance research into coastal communities

The International Pole & Line Foundation has been awarded funding from the Research Councils UK’s Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) under the Blue Communities project
Fishers celebrate their catch, Indonesia, 2015 © Paul Hilton & IPNLF

This will support social research into Indonesian small-scale coastal tuna fishing communities that depend upon ocean resources for food, livelihoods, health and well-being.

Led by Plymouth Marine Laboratory and in collaboration with the University of Plymouth, the University of Exeter, international partners and local stakeholders, the Blue Communities project will help build long-term research capability for marine planning in East and Southeast Asia over the next four years and, in doing so, support local coastal communities.

Through academic-stakeholder collaborations and community co-creation, this project will support the development, implementation and ongoing management of initiatives that promote the sustainable use of marine resources. This project provides a valuable opportunity for IPNLF to conduct research into the social and cultural dynamics of Indonesia’s pole-and-line and handline coastal tuna fisheries to inform marine planning and effort allocation processes.

Professor Mel Austen, Blue Communities Principal Investigator and a Head of Science at Plymouth Marine Laboratory, comments: ‘We are delighted to have been awarded the GCRF funding and we look forward to getting started on the Blue Communities project. An aspect of particular interest will be comparing the unique features, existing management strategies and local challenges for each of the case study sites and identifying successful initiatives and best-practice that may also be beneficial in other areas.’

Dr Alice Miller, Social Research & Programme Director at IPNLF says: ‘This is a very exciting opportunity for IPNLF to collaborate with leading, international institutions to further our understanding of the social and economic dynamics of small-scale tuna fishing communities, and identify how these dynamics can influence management on a local and national level. We look forward to progressing our understanding over the next four years for the benefit of the Indonesia’s small-scale tuna fisheries and coastal communities throughout Southeast Asia”.

Notes to Editors


  • Plymouth Marine Laboratory
  • Plymouth University
  • University of Exeter
  • Center for Environmental Research and Education (CERE), Hanoi National University of Education
  • The Centre for Sustainable Energy and Resources Management Universitas Nasional (CSERM-UNAS)
  • Western Philippines University College of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
  • University of Malaya’s Sustainability Science Research Cluster
  • Blue Ventures
  • International Pole & Line Foundation
  • North Devon Biosphere Reserve



The International Pole & Line Foundation (IPNLF) works to develop, support and promote socially and environmentally responsible pole-and-line and handline tuna fisheries around the world. IPNLF’s ambition is to contribute to thriving coastal fisheries, including the people, communities, businesses and seas connected with them.  As a hub for sustainably-minded organisations, we use the influence of the market to forge change through practical fishery projects and stakeholder cooperation. IPNLF membership is open to organisations involved in the one-by-one caught tuna supply chain. Allied with our Members, IPNLF demonstrates the value of one-by-one caught tuna to consumers, policymakers and throughout the supply chain. We work across science, policy and the seafood sector, using an evidence-based, solutions-focused approach with guidance from our Scientific & Technical Advisory Committee and Board of Trustees.


IPNLF was officially registered in the United Kingdom in 2012 (Charity 1145586), with branch offices in London and the Maldives, and a staff presence in Indonesia.

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