Asia-Pacific Fishery Commission

Women and men in small-scale fisheries and aquaculture in Asia

Category Small-scale fisheries

Fisheries and aquaculture contribute to food security and livelihoods of millions of people in Asia. Both women and men are engaged in fisheries and aquaculture. In the past ten years, many actors have worked on raising awareness on women’s contribution as well as promoting gender equality in fisheries and aquaculture. This study aims to consolidate the efforts to date to provide recommendations for action and future studies. Its objective is to answer the following questions for small-scale fisheries and aquaculture in Asia: (i) What is the division of labour between women and men in specific fisheries and aquaculture practices and what are the differences with respect to their access to assets, resources and entitlements? (ii) What are the drivers of such differences? (iii) What could be critical entry points and opportunities for addressing inequalities and discriminatory practices? To answer these questions, the study conducted an online literature search on gender and fisheries and aquaculture in Asia, selecting articles published between 2011 and 2021. This period was selected to understand the contemporary condition and state of knowledge, and since we aimed for an exhaustive list of literature, some limits in the time period was necessary. The review included both published peerreviewed papers in journals as well as other research and project reports that are available online. In total, it reviewed 253 publications on fisheries and 210 publications on aquaculture. The top four countries where studies were conducted are India (44.3 percent of fisheries and 24.3 percent of aquaculture articles), the Philippines (35.6 percent of fisheries and 17.6 percent of aquaculture articles), Bangladesh (27.7 percent of fisheries and 32.9 percent of aquaculture articles) and Indonesia (30.8 percent of fisheries and 20.5 percent of aquaculture articles). The findings based on each research question are presented in this publication.