The studies on livelihood and micro-enterprise development opportunities for women in coastal fishing communities in India are a follow-up to the national workshop held in Panaji, Goa, India, from 1 to 4 July 2003. The studies found that poverty has remained a serious problem in fishing communities in Orissa and Maharashtra, made even more severe by the widespread absence of rural infrastructure and services. In recent years through the efforts of non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the marine wing of the Fisheries Department of Orissa and the initiative of other government departments, many women self-help groups (SHGs) and cooperatives have been formed and training has been provided to their members in the field of fish processing and marketing. Only a minority of the SHGs and cooperatives have so far been linked to financial institutions. The findings of the studies suggest that through actively promoting self-help groups and cooperatives among women in coastal fishing communities and through linking these associations with financial institutions, investment and working capital needs of their members can be met. The state-level workshops in Orissa and Maharashtra made specific recommendations as to what kind of assistance is needed so that poverty in coastal fishing communities can be reduced and livelihoods improved and diversified through micro-enterprise development and microfinance and training support.