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Governance and management

CLLD around Europe

A total of 20 out of the 27 Member States that receive EMFF funding have expressed an interest in implementing Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) in the 2014-2020 period. With the exception of Croatia, which is implementing CLLD for the first time, Member States are now entering the second programming period of CLLD in fisheries areas and most have a clearer vision of what they expect from FLAGs and how to help them achieve good results.

Governance and policy in fisheries areas

Past evaluations have shown that one of the main advantages of local development programmes, like LEADER and Axis 4, is that they help to provide relatively fragmented communities with an organisational platform, a voice and a channel of communication to those areas of government and policy that affect their future. This involves operating at two different levels, each of which will receive attention in this part of the web.

Firstly, groups have to consider how their own governance structures (the FLAG) relates to other organisations at both local and wider levels. For example, how do they coordinate with Producer Organisations, local and regional resource management systems, LEADER groups, the bodies intervening in broader maritime policy and integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) and so on. 

Secondly, FLAGs need to understand how broader policy developments such as the reform of the CFP, trends in Cohesion Policy, Integrated Maritime Policy and so on can affect the strategy in their area. But at the same time, to justify EU funding, they also need to translate the lessons they learn through local experimentation into policy recommendations that are transferrable to other European contexts.

This section of the web will, therefore, be divided into two major sections:

  • The governance of fisheries areas (partnership structures, cooperation with LEADER, local fisheries management systems, links with local Maritime Reserves and Natura 2000,  ICZM, Integrated Maritime Policy, regional advisory and planning bodies…..)
  • Policy and fisheries areas (reform of the CFP, regimes for SSF, rights based management systems, Cohesion policy and local development, environmental policy, Integrated Maritime Policy……)

The exchange of information on this part of the website is likely to become particularly important in the period leading up to decisions on the future of EU policy and towards the end of the Axis 4 programme when the groups have time to analyse and communicate their results.

Photo Competition: What does social inclusion in fisheries communities mean to you?

What does social inclusion in fisheries communities mean to you? Grab your cameras and show us because we’re launching a photo competition!

Submit your photograph before March 15th and you may just win to have your photograph be a focal point in the next FARNET Guide following the transnational seminar on “Social inclusion for vibrant fishing communities”.

Interested? Here are some answers to your possible questions

Q: What should the photograph look like?
A: We leave that up to you and your creativity! When you submit your picture make sure to include a description of why you feel it best represents social inclusion in fisheries communities.

Q: How big should the photograph be?
A: As you know, FARNET Guides are available in PDF format therefore thanks for keeping the photograph in high resolution. We won’t be able to publish a photograph of low quality.

Q: How will you use my photograph?
A: Photographs can be featured in FARNET publications and/or on social media and credits will be given to the photographers.

Q: How do I submit my photograph?
A: Send your photo by email to marguerite@farnet.eu along with your description and contact information. If the file is too big, send it via WeTransfer.


This call will be open until March 15th 2017. Until then, we remain available to assist you and provide you with more details if necessary.

You have the opportunity to show your work to the entire community in a fun and creative way, we’d love for you to be a part of it!

FARNET Guide #10: Starting CLLD implementation in practice

As of the 2014-2020 programming period, the bottom-up methodology to local development can be funded by any of the European Structural and Investment Funds under its new name: Community-Led Local Development. As such, local development strategies may be implemented in very different types of areas, from rural to coastal to urban. This guide presents examples of applying CLLD under the different ESI Funds: EMFF, EAFRD, ESF and ERDF from the perspective of Managing Authorities and local actors. It also shows different methods of integrating the EU Funds at the local level.


Download Guide #10         

"Results-oriented CLLD in fisheries areas": Helsinki, Finland 24-26 May 2016

The second FARNET transnational seminar “Results-oriented CLLD in fisheries areas” took place in Helsinki, from the 24th - 26th May 2016 and was designed to:

> help FLAGs develop better strategies, using SMART indicators and targets, to deliver results;

> help both FLAGs and MAs to develop monitoring systems and to steer the delivery of fisheries CLLD;

> open a discussion on the broader impacts of CLLD

#EUFishEcon: “cooperation, cooperation, cooperation”

Economic Advice in Fisheries Management: a trilogue between Science, Administration and Stakeholders”, was the title of a conference organised recently by DG MARE of the European Commission, in collaboration with the European Association of Fisheries Economists (EAFE) and the University of Malta. FARNET was there also to highlight how CLLD is enabling fishing communities to develop new and innovative fisheries management initiatives.

The event gathered over 220 participants, including policy makers, fisheries scientists, NGOs, trade and seafood processing organisations, and small and large scale fisheries associations, from inside and outside the EU, for 1.5 days of lively and rich discussions (see outputs here). Quoting Commissioner Karmenu Vella in his opening speech, “we need accurate and relevant economic advice to back up our policy proposals… and we need to find ways to take into account that seafood markets are becoming ever more integrated and globalised…  so that the force stays with us.

With CLLD and FARNET present at this event, the point was made that a cooperative approach, bringing together local knowledge, smart science-fisheries partnerships and appropriately designed data collection tools, can support the design of more efficient fisheries management policies for local communities. Illustrated during the event with examples such as Telecapêche, a French Axis 4 supported catch data reporting system in Brittany, and the “relational capital in fishing communities” study by the Stretto FLAG in Calabria, Italy, there is clear evidence that FLAGs & CLLD can help to bring balance to the force in fisheries management.

For more information on the event and all presentations, click here.

Implementing the discard ban: guidance for small-scale fisheries

Since the 1st of January 2016, demersal fishermen in certain parts of the EU are obliged to land all the fish they catch (link). To help those concerned by this “zero discards” policy, especially during the critical adaptation phase, many Member States are producing specific guidelines. See some examples below:

By Member state:

  • Marine Management Organisation - Guides on the discard ban, how the rules apply, selling undersize fish, reporting requirements and quota management (link)
  • Seafish - The Landing Obligation (The Discards Ban) (link)
  • Seafish - Potential Implications of the Landing Obligation on Onshore Seafood Supply Chains in the UK (link)


  • Direção Geral dos Recursos Naturais, Segurança e Serviços Marítimos - Aplicação da obrigação de descarga (link)


  • Guia para la aplicación de la obligación de desembarque para buques españoles a partir del 1 de enero de 2016 para las especies demersales (versión 23/12/2015) (link)


By maritime basins:



Research for EP PECH committee – “Options of handling choke species in the view of the EU landing obligation – the Baltic plaice example” (link)

Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) Landing Obligations in EU Fisheries - part 3 (STECF-14-06) link



Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF): Landing Obligation - Part 6 (Fisheries targeting demersal species in the Mediterranean Sea) (STECF-15-19) (link)

Proud to be a Fisher….WOman!

The FAO held a workshop on the 7th of October in Vigo on “Shaping an international network for women in the seafood industry”. The event comes at a time when a growing number of voices, at international, national and local level, are calling for better recognition and representation of women in decision-making processes, and FARNET was there.

During this meeting, FLAGs, women entrepreneurs and women’s organisations explored various ideas on the role of women in the seafood industry, showing successful examples of how to overcome barriers and foster greater entrepreneurship among women in the seafood sector. Although women account for 12% of the workforce in the European fisheries and aquaculture sector, they remain largely invisible, and their role is not always acknowledged. CLLD projects such as  “women entrepreneurs in Andalusia’s fisheries areas” or the tanning fish skin project of the Fisherwomen’s branch of the Ostrobothnian Fisheries Association provide tangible examples of how this situation could be improved. The French government has also stressed the relevance of the local development approach to the promotion of gender equality by launching a publication which highlights the diverse roles of women in the fisheries sector, including through several Axis 4 projects.

With EMFF and CLLD, women are increasingly encouraged and supported to access funding in order to increase their visibility, promote equal opportunities within the sector, start smart businesses and add value to local fisheries products.

Women in the seafood industry – a worldwide FAO study

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization’s GLOBEFISH Programme has published the results of a worldwide study into the role of women in the seafood industry. The first of its kind, this report presents what is known and what remains to be investigated on this important subject, while aiming to raise the awareness of policy makers and business leaders on the essential role that women play in the industry and the inequity they experience. Despite the serious lack of data that the study reveals, the report identifies a series of cultural and societal barriers and discrimination towards women in the industry, in which they make up around 50% of the workforce. Roles between men and women, however, are sharply differentiated with women extremely dominant in sectors such as processing but largely absent in leadership positions and policy-making. Click here to access the full report and executive summary. 

Operational Programmes 2014 - 2020

The European Commission has recently launched the EMFF country files page which presents the adopted Operational Programmes (OPs) for the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). In December 2014, the Latvian Operational Programme became the first to be approved by the European Commission. The package seeks to enhance the competiveness, sustainability and viability of the sector. The programme aims to more than treble aquaculture production, and to increase net profits for fishermen without compromising sustainability.

More information on the available operational programmes and country fact sheets here