Recent news about TBTI Japan network

SSF Regional Symposium for Asia-Pacific

Join us for a reflective journey as we look back at the SSF Regional Symposium for Asia-Pacific. Witness some of the most exciting and memorable moments, find out what topics took center stage, and check what issues and next steps were discussed as part of Bright and Hope Spots. There is also a special section on ‘Girls Who Fish’ as well as on ‘Girls Who Love To Eat Fish’. Plus, lots and lots of photos. So, get comfortable and enjoy the read.

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TBTI Japan launches a TD committee

TBTI Japan has launched a transdisciplinary committee for a small-scale fisheries white paper project, which will be officially released during the Small-Scale Fisheries Regional Symposium for Asia Pacific in April of 2024. The first committee meeting was also featured in the Fisheries Daily on Nov 28, 2023.

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Not so small after all

In the past two months, I have had an opportunity to speak to the Japanese public regarding small-scale fisheries issues as well as regarding Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) and Vulnerability to Viability (V2V).

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The TBTI Japan e-book

TBTI Global Book Series

In the Era of Big Change: Essays About Japanese Small-Scale Fisheries is a third book published under TBTI Global Book Series. This publication series that aims to highlight why we need to pay close attention to small-scale fisheries. The series will be of use to anyone interested in learning more about small-scale fisheries, especially about their important contribution to livelihoods, well-being, poverty alleviation and food security, as well as to those who are keen to help raise profile of small-scale fisheries in the policy realm.

TBTI Japan Research Network

The vision of the TBTI Japan research network does not differ much from the framework of the stated vision of TBTI project. As such, small-scale fisheries in the world at a glance are divided into each continent and country where the history, culture, tradition, and governance system are different; however, they actually share many common issues. “Apart but together” may have been the most powerful message transmitted in the time of the COVID 19 pandemic, and this is probably an important indication for small-scale fisheries around the world. No matter how separated by physical distance, the power born as a result of cooperation, coordination, collaboration, and partnership is infinite.

We are pleased to announce that the TBTI Japan Research Network has successfully received its very first funding, “Tokai University Research & Education Grant.” The grant is to support the projects led by university researchers to activate research and education, and will significantly contribute to promoting the TBTI Japan Research network. The network, whose full name is “Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) Japan: An Important Network for Japanese Small-Scale Fisheries Research,” will ensure the widespread of the importance of the existence and roles of Japanese small-scale fisheries within Japan and overseas through transdisciplinary approaches.

Japan’s fisheries governance is based on the fishery rights and fisheries cooperative systems, which in turn are based on the existence of small-scale fisheries. Therefore, the presence of small-scale fisheries cannot be ignored in Japan’s fisheries policy. Within this context, the TBTI Japan Research Network brings together scientists, practitioners, community groups, organizations through transdisciplinary approaches and will ensure the widespread of the importance of the existence and roles of Japanese small-scale fisheries as well as addressing issues and concerns affecting Japanese small-scale fisheries.

The vision of the TBTI Japan Research Network includes: (1) Dispatch the information actively along with systematical research on the various functions, importance, and latent strength of Japanese small-scale fisheries. (2) Adopt transdisciplinary perspectives in Japanese small-scale fisheries research and governance. (3) Enable the improvement of gender equality and equity in Japan by the initiative of the Japanese small-scale fisheries. (4) Secure fishers’ income and the successors by establishing a research base to forge ahead with a wide range of new initiatives and concepts regarding small-scale fisheries. (5) Approach Japanese small-scale fisheries from the standpoint of Blue Justice and continue with theoretical discussions on Blue Justice and advance research to relay it to practice. (6) Help Japan to recognize the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries (SSF Guidelines) and promote its implementation fully and make a conscious effort on its application in Japan.

TBTI Japan research network coordinators

Yinji Li


Yinji Li is an associate professor at Tokai University in Shizuoka. Her research interests and expertise lie in fisheries and coastal issues among Northeast Asia, such as Japan, Mainland China, Taiwan, and South Korea. For many years, she has been researching these areas to understand the actual conditions and challenges on governance mechanisms, community institutions, market and branding systems, community-based tourism, etc., and interacting with relevant stakeholders. She is a member of the Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) project, Human Dimensions Working Group of Integrated Marine Biosphere Research (IMBeR) project, and coordinator of Japan country team of the Vulnerability to Viability Global Partnership(V2V) project.


Tamano Namikawa was born in Kanagawa Prefecture. After graduating from the Department of Construction, Faculty of Engineering, Yokohama National University, she engaged in port planning and coastal planning at a construction consulting company. After leaving the company, she received a Ph.D. in Marine Science from the Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology. She started her current career in the Japanese Institute of Fisheries Infrastructure and Communities in 2011.

Tamano Namikawa

In the Era of Big Change

Essays About Japanese Small-Scale Fisheries

To say that a book is timely does not generate the sense of novelty or curiosity as it once did – the claim is being made too frequently, with numerous books and articles published each day. Yet, there is something noteworthy about this book, not only because of the splendid content it offers, but also because it highlights the possibility of doing something together in challenging times. Similar to what the title of the book suggests about Japanese small-scale fisheries, the world is in the ‘era of big change,’ with rising concerns related to global warming, globalization and environmental sustainability. But as the book shows, many of the changes have origins and deep historical roots that need to be traced and examined in order to fully understand why things are what they are today, and to figure out what to do next…  While the book does not address the impacts of Covid-19 on Japanese small-scale fisheries, its timeliness is in how it reminds us that even in the era of big change, there are many small changes that happen along the way.

This TBTI e-book is a real treat for everyone, whether you’re familiar or not with Japanese fisheries. The book editors, Yinji Li and Tamano Namikawa, invited 48 contributors to cover all aspects of small-scale fisheries in Japan without losing sights of the broader picture, and with an intention to situate Japanese small-scale fisheries in the global context.

The book opens up with an overview of small-scale fisheries, followed by several chapters addressing various aspects of small-scale fisheries governance. Part 3 centers around the rich and lively portraits about small-scale fisheries and the fishing villages, giving a portrayal of small fishing towns, dotted around the Japanese coastline. The dynamics in the fisheries and the fishing communities are further illustrated in Part 4. Part 5 offers something very unique: after looking into the Japanese small-scale fisheries, it is now looking outward, making comparison with 13 countries in the region and across the oceans. Returning to the point that small-scale fisheries are not isolated from other sectors or other forces outside of their communities, Part 6 of the book looks at small-scale fisheries in the broader context, such as ocean warming and other ocean development like renewable energy. The last part captures the voices of fishers and fishers’ organizations, as well as of those working in different government agencies and research institutions, about the issues and concerns in small-scale fisheries.

The book also marks the official start of the “TBTI Japan Research Network, ” which brings together scientists, practitioners, community groups and organizations interested in small-scale fisheries.

TBTI Japan研究ネットワークについて

世界の漁獲量(海面及び内水面)の約半分を占める小規模漁業は、世界の約 3,000万人の漁業者の 90%以上を雇用している上、加工や流通などの関連業種を含めるとさらに8,400万人を支援しています。また、小規模漁業者及び関連労働者の95%以上が開発途上国に住んでいるため、水辺で生活する人々の経済を支え、社会的・文化的な価値に貢献していると考えられます。しかし、これらの小規模漁業コミュニティーの多くは不安定で脆弱な生活および労働条件にあります。小規模漁業の重要性を認識した研究者らは世界規模の小規模漁業研究ネットワークを形成、TBTI(Too Big To Ignore: 無視するには大きすぎる)プロジェクトとして知られるようになりました。 小規模漁業への関心が高まる中、日本でもTBTI Japan研究ネットワークを発足することになりました。本研究ネットワークには、研究者、行政関係者、実務者、漁業者、コミュニティグループ・組織・団体等が集まり、日本の小規模漁業に関する様々な研究を進めるとともに、日本小規模漁業の存在意義と役割を国内外に向けて積極的に発信することを目的としています(本研究ネットワークでは、沿岸漁業を小規模漁業として捉えています)。

最初の事業として「「大」変化時代における日本「小」規模漁業の意義(In the Era of Big Change)」という本が作られました。この本では、48人の寄稿者を招待して、日本の小規模漁業を取り巻く様々な側面をエッセイ形式で紹介しています。日本の小規模漁業を世界規模で紹介し、位置づけようと意図している本です。内容は多岐にわたっています。第1部は導入部として、小規模漁業の意義、日本の小規模漁業について概観し、第2部は日本の小規模漁業の制度的側面として、日本の漁業制度における漁協の役割、女性の貢献の重要性、漁業法改正、里海の考え方、沿岸利用における漁業者の役割、ジェンダー政策、政府のサポート等について紹介しています。第3部は日本の小規模漁業の現状として、伝統と文化、海女、小型捕鯨、漁業安全システム、漁港整備、産地市場、漁場整備、防災、就業状況等について、第4部は新たなイニシアティブ・概念として、六次産業化、ブランド化、都市漁村交流、渚泊、浜の道具箱、浜の活力再生プラン、水産物活用技術について紹介しています。第5部は国際比較という視点から、タイ、マレーシア、カンボジア、フィリピン、ベトナム、中国、台湾、マーシャル諸島、マラウィ、米国、カナダの各国の小規模漁業と日本の小規模漁業を比較しています。第6部はグローバル化の視点から日本の小規模漁業について、海洋温暖化、再生可能エネルギー、環境教育、海洋保護区、SSFガイドライン、SDGs、学際的アプローチ、パートナーシップ、ブルー・ジャスティス、TBTI-Japanの各視点から考察を加えています。この本は、下記から無料でダウンロードすることが可能です。各章の和文要旨も掲載しています。 https://tbtiglobal.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/In-the-Era-of-Big-Change-ebook_Final_small.pdf

TBTI ジャパン研究ネットワークのビジョンとしては、1)日本小規模漁業の多様な機能と重要性及びその潜在力について、体系的な研究とともに積極的に発信すること、2)日本のジェンダー問題を小規模漁業から率先して改善できるように推進すること、3)漁業者の所得向上と後継者の確保のための様々な取組を推し進めるための研究基盤となること、4)ブルーエコノミーや「成長産業化」政策の中で小規模漁業が疎外されることがないように、ブルー・ジャスティスの理論的検討を重ねるとともに、実践へつなげるための研究を進めること、5)日本において「持続可能な小規模漁業を持続するためのFAO の自主的ガイドライン」を十分認識するとともに、意識して履行していくことを推進すること等が挙げられています。


TBTI Japan コーディネーター

李 銀姫(東海大学海洋学部  准教授)
浪川 珠乃(漁港漁場漁村総合研究所  上級研究員)


東海大学海洋学部 李銀姫研究室(8341室) 
〒424-8610 静岡市清水区折戸3-20-1 
Email: [email protected] 
Twitter: @TBTI_Japan  
Instagram: @tbti_japan 
Facebook: @TBTIJapan