Harnessing the diversity of small-scale actors is key to the future of aquatic food systems

Rebecca E. Short*, Stefan Gelcich, David C. Little, Fiorenza Micheli, Edward H. Allison, Xavier Basurto, Ben Belton, Cecile Brugere, Simon R. Bush, Ling Cao, Beatrice Crona, Philippa J. Cohen, Omar Defeo, Peter Edwards, Caroline E. Ferguson, Nicole Franz, Christopher D. Golden, Benjamin S. Halpern, Lucie Hazen, Christina HicksDerek Johnson, Alexander M. Kaminski, Sangeeta Mangubhai, Rosamond L. Naylor, Melba Reantaso, U.R. Sumaila, Shakuntala H. Thilsted, Michelle Tigchelaar, Colette C.C. Wabnitz, Wenbo Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Small-scale fisheries and aquaculture (SSFA) provide livelihoods for over 100 million people and sustenance for ~1 billion people, particularly in the Global South. Aquatic foods are distributed through diverse supply chains, with the potential to be highly adaptable to stresses and shocks, but face a growing range of threats and adaptive challenges. Contemporary governance assumes homogeneity in SSFA despite the diverse nature of this sector. Here we use SSFA actor profiles to capture the key dimensions and dynamism of SSFA diversity, reviewing contemporary threats and exploring opportunities for the SSFA sector. The heuristic framework can inform adaptive governance actions supporting the diversity and vital roles of SSFA in food systems, and in the health and livelihoods of nutritionally vulnerable people—supporting their viability through appropriate policies whilst fostering equitable and sustainable food systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)733-741
Number of pages9
JournalNature Food
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sep 2021


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  • Author Correction: Harnessing the diversity of small-scale actors is key to the future of aquatic food systems

    Short, R. E., Gelcich, S., Little, D. C., Micheli, F., Allison, E. H., Basurto, X., Belton, B., Brugere, C., Bush, S. R., Cao, L., Crona, B., Cohen, P. J., Defeo, O., Edwards, P., Ferguson, C. E., Franz, N., Golden, C. D., Halpern, B. S., Hazen, L., Hicks, C., & 10 othersJohnson, D., Kaminski, A. M., Mangubhai, S., Naylor, R. L., Reantaso, M., Sumaila, R., Thilsted, S. H., Tigchelaar, M., Wabnitz, C. C. C. & Zhang, W., 2021, In: Nature Food. 2, 10, p. 828-828

    Research output: Contribution to journalComment/Letter to the editorAcademic

    Open Access
    1 Citation (Scopus)

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