How to monitor implementation of
the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries?

In 2014, the FAO Committee on Fisheries (COFI) endorsed the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (SSF Guidelines). They are a set of recommendations to states and other actors on how to make small-scale fisheries more sustainable. Key issues in the SSF Guidelines include allocating tenure rights equitably; managing resources responsibly; supporting social development and decent work; empowering fish workers along the entire value chain; promoting gender equality; and addressing climate change and disaster risks.

The implementation of the SSF Guidelines will require engagement with and partnerships across different institutions, organizations and actors, which will have different roles to play to address issues in relation to fisheries governance, gender, post-harvest, food security and nutrition and other wider societal interests.

But, how can we know that the SSF Guidelines have an effect?

In chapter 13, the SSF Guidelines explicitly refer to the need for monitoring of their implementation. FAO is working towards developing guidance for measuring progress at the national level of the implementation of the SSF Guidelines. This e-consultation aims to solicit views, recommendations, suggestions, and good practices for monitoring the implementation of the SSF Guidelines. Your knowledge about and experience with small-scale fisheries is valuable as FAO works to develop a relevant, realistic and useful tool for monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the SSF Guidelines.

Topics for discussion

1. Defining progress towards securing sustainable small-scale fisheries

2. Meaningful and feasible indicators: How can we measure progress?

3. Participatory monitoring: Key elements and experiences

Please share your opinions on what parts of the SSF Guidelines should be monitored and how. What defines progress towards securing sustainable small-scale fisheries? How can we measure progress? What would be meaningful and feasible indicators in your opinion? And, who would you suggest is suited to do the measuring? What could participatory monitoring look like?

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