Inderscience Publishers

From shouting matches to productive dialogue – establishing stakeholder participation in Polish fisheries governance

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Environmental governance is increasingly turning away from classic top-down hierarchical governance regimes and experimenting with more collaborative forms of governance, e.g., analytic-deliberative participation of resource users. In this paper, we examine the role of the Polish Baltic Sea Fisheries Roundtable as a multi-stakeholder platform in Polish Baltic Sea fisheries governance. The fisheries sector within a country rapidly transitioning from a centrally planned system to (pseudo) market conditions provides an illustrative case in a very difficult context. Employing an action- and learning-based approach, we participated in the initiation and institutionalisation of a process of levelling the playing field and building trust within the fisheries sector in Poland. Using Adler and Birkhoff’s collaborative process model for action planning and implementation, we evaluate the approach and outcomes of this project and discuss the results in relation to the existing literature.

Keywords: stakeholder participation, fisheries governance, environmental governance, sustainability, learning, dialogue, trust building, Poland, action research, analytic-deliberative participation, collaborative process model, CPM

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