hide You are viewing an archived web page, collected at the request of Publications Office of the European Union using Archive-It. This page was captured on 16:57:22 Nov 13, 2019, and is part of the European Union collection. The information on this web page may be out of date. See All versions of this archived page. Loading media information
Visit the new FARNET 2014-2020 website

Environment, culture and society

"Material" and "Immaterial" investment in fisheries areas

This section deals with how Fisheries Local Action Groups can create both the physical and the human conditions required for sustainable development in their areas. In other words, it looks at the links between fisheries and the three main pillars of sustainable development.

Many, if not all of the actions FLAGS can take in this field are valuable in their own right but they also permit local communities to organise their natural, cultural and social “assets” in a way that creates economic opportunities and jobs at a later stage. However, in the first instance, these kinds of investments are generally “premarket” or “non-productive” and are mostly financed by public funds.

FLAGs can support two broad types of activity in this field.  Firstly, they can promote a series of material investments, like for example: “supporting small fisheries and tourism related infrastructure” (Article 44.1e) and protecting the environment of fisheries areas, revitalising coastal hamlets and protecting and enhancing architectural heritage (Article 44.1f). Common actions under this heading include: signposting, thematic itineraries and paths, museums and interpretation centres, rehabilitating historic buildings associated with fishing, cultural and social centres, preserving the areas natural heritage, environmental services and so on.

Secondly, FLAGs can promote a series of “immaterial” investments to train local people, carry out research and make their assets known to a wider public (through territorial marketing, generic publicity campaigns, research on environmental and cultural resources….). This can include “the maximum of 15% of the priority axis which can be dedicated to measures such as the improvement of professional skills, worker adaptability and access to employment provided they are an integral part of a sustainable development strategy” (Article 44.2.).

Given the need to coordinate both material and immaterial investments within each field, the information in this section will be grouped into three broad categories:

  • Environmental conditions
  • Cultural conditions
  • Social conditions.

These will also be the subject of technical dossiers and seminars by FARNET in future years.

The state of Europe’s seas

Three reports published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) during 2015 shed light on the current state of Europe’s seas and the network of marine protected areas (MPAs).

The state of Europe’s seas, identifies the main sustainability challenges affecting our seas and assesses how the EU is responding to these challenges. It argues that the EU is not currently on the path to achieving sustainability, but that a long-term transition to sustainability can be secured using available policies and knowledge. The Spatial analysis of marine protected area networks in Europe's seas presents an overview of the spatial distribution of the networks of MPAs established in EU waters, while Marine protected areas in Europe's seas — an overview and perspectives for the future assesses progress made to date in establishing MPAs and MPA networks in Europe and discusses how best to assess their effectiveness.

Axis 4 project featured in Horizon Magazine.eu

"Sea sponges could be used on an industrial scale to soak up pesticides, lead and even dangerous bacteria from Europe’s coastline."

The Axis 4 project "sponges for water quality", led by Professor Pierre Sauleau from Université Sud Bretagne (France), the CRC (Shellfish Committee) of Bretagne Sud, and supported by the Auray FLAG during the 2007-2014 Axis4 programming period, was recently selected for publication by the Horizon Magazine. It illustrates the importance of partnerships that bring research, fisheries and aquaculture professionals together and highlights the benefits of the FLAG's "bridging" role and how this can help the scientific community to focus their research on topics with real practical application.

Read the full article here.

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. 

Community Seafood Officer - FLAG Northern Devon - UK

A combination of one-to-one engagement with local businesses and English fisheries, the promotion of networking amongst them and the provision of business mentoring support has increased the supply of local fish into the Northern Devon market and led to the creation of three new local fish outlets.    

Download  suomi (fi) 

Fish training for future chefs - Kaszuby FLAG and North Kaszuby FLAG - PL

A cooperation project has organised training on how fish is caught and processed and on preparing regional fish dishes, helping 60 students and teachers from Polish gastronomy schools to better understand the potential of fish as valuable food.

Download  suomi (fi) 

Sailing Towards 2020: Axis 4 in Action

This brochure has been developed for the "Sailing towards 2020" event, it highlights facts, figures and success stories from the 2007/2013 Axis4 program of the European Fisheries Fund. Stakeholders (FLAGs, Managing Authorities, project promoters) may use it as a source of inspiration for future projects; but it will also interest wider audiences, such as researchers, NGOs and/or the media wanting to know more on local development of European fisheries areas.


Download this publication here        


Find out more with the 42 project posters showcased during the Sailing Towards 2020 conference.

FARNET Good practices 2007-2013: language compilations

 Download the compilation of FARNET good practices and publications in the following languages:



EMPREAMAR – business mentoring and coaching - FLAG Fisterra - Ría Muros - Noia - ES

The EMPREAMAR project has targeted local people, in particular the unemployed from the fisheries sector, with the provision of business mentoring, coaching and financial support in order to encourage the creation of new sustainable businesses in the fisheries sector. The project has resulted in the creation of 8 new business initiatives in the FLAG area.


Getting young people into commercial sea fishing - FLAG Cornwall and Isles of Scilly - UK

Training courses from Cornwall, UK, show how FLAGs can support skills acquisition and restore the attractiveness of the sector to young professionals. 19 young unemployed people have subsequently found work in fishing and fishing related sectors.

Download  suomi (fi)