In a keynote at the CGIAR Integrated Systems Research Conference earlier this year, I suggested that researchers might look at gender as a leverage point in development. This idea comes from systems thinking, which is—in very simplest terms—a way of approaching an issue that sees the “thing being studied” as part of a larger set of elements that interact in multiple ways to shape outcomes.
Oceans are home to thousands of species of animals and plants that provide an essential source of food, nutrition and income for millions, including many of the world’s poorest people. We all agree that our oceans are worth protecting. Indeed, one of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development calls for the conservation and sustainable use of our oceans, seas and marine resources. This makes perfect sense.
Fisheries managers and policy makers have traditionally focused on measuring the health of fish stocks and managing for their sustainability. While understanding how healthy fish stocks is important, a recent paper by Jim Anderson and colleagues offer a new suite of measurements that also consider the social and economic benefits that fisheries deliver. Including these dimensions in assessments of fishery performance will be key to making the most of our fisheries.