This workshop will be a scoping meeting for an area of research that will look at fisheries management impacts on fishing families, and participants will be critical to informing us about what issues are most important. The perspectives on fishing family dynamics that emerge from the workshop will inform the next phase of this research. All participants in Alaska’s fisheries with experience or knowledge of fishing family dynamics are welcome.
Research from around the world indicates that often there is a gender-based division of labor in fisheries, with women primarily engaged in onshore activities while men are the primary harvesters. We will discuss perceptions of family roles and responsibilities in Alaska’s fisheries.
Over recent decades, Alaska’s fisheries have undergone many regulatory, environmental, social, and economic changes, which could differentially affect dynamics in fishing families. For example, anecdotally we’ve heard that catch share programs created safer fishing conditions allowing families to bring children onboard vessels, but the prolongation of the season under these programs created a conflict with maternal responsibilities for women who participated as crewmembers. Broader socioeconomic shifts can also create new opportunities for participation in fisheries or other types of employment for some family members, affecting families’ choices about the continuation of family fishing businesses. This part of the workshop will be an opportunity for participants to share their experiences about the impacts of these changes on fishing family dynamics.
From new products and marketing innovations to strategic intergenerational networks and regulatory frameworks, in this final segment we will discuss how fishing families and the roles of women in Alaska’s fisheries may evolve.