2019 Climate and Environment Review

Fishing Aid: Mapping and Synthesising Evidence in Support of SDG 14 Fisheries Targets

Goncalo Carneiro, Raphaelle Bisiaux, Mary Frances Davidson, Tumi Tómasson, Jonas Bjärnstedt

Despite several decades of aid to the fisheries sector and numerous evaluations, there are very few known efforts to analyse and document lessons learned across those interventions.

This study is a systematic map and a thematic synthesis of the knowledge and experiences contained in evaluation reports of fisheries aid interventions. Its purpose is to inform the design and implementation of future interventions related to SDG14 in general and its fisheries targets in particular.

The report was presented during the seminar Fish Stocks and Aid Flows: Poverty Reduction in Times of Resource Depletion.


  • During the 1990s, donor support shifted focus from fish production to fishing management for sustainable fishing.
  • Reducing illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, and also overfishing, require improved monitoring, regulatory and enforcement capacity, and increased efforts to provide alternative incomes for those who will lose from stricter regulation.
  • There is more to gain from increasing the value of fish products, than from catching more fish.
  • There is considerable focus on monitoring industrial fisheries – whereas difficulties in monitoring smallscale fisheries hardly are addressed.
  • Attaining the SDG target of sustainable yields might only be possible with greater financial commitments from the international community.
  • The topic of fisheries subsidies has received comparatively little attention and the work conducted under the auspices of the World Trade Organisation has so far not borne fruits.

Gonçalo Carneiro, Senior analyst at the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management, Gothenburg

Raphaëlle Bisiaux, Senior consultant at NIRAS, Stockholm

Mary Frances Davidson, Project manager at the United Nations University Fisheries Training Programme, Reykjavik

Tumi Tómasson, Director of the UNU-FTP, Reykjavik

Jonas Bjärnstedt, the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management, Gothenburg