Session addressing ocean acidification at the 7th World Fisheries Congress, 23-27 May 2016, Busan, Korea

Session title: “Future of Marine Fisheries under Climate Change: Exploring Uncertainties, Future Scenarios and Multi-Scale Transformative Pathways”

Deadline for abstract submission: 15 November 2015!

Session abstract

Climate change and acidification impact ocean systems and fisheries in multifaceted ways, through changes in ocean productivity, redistribution of species and fisheries resources and increased variability of some fish stocks. These impacts have large implications for fishing sectors, coastal communities and society, particularly for those that are already vulnerable due to, for instance, resource depletion, existence of perverse subsidies and institutional barriers that inhibit consideration of transboundary issues. To help build climate-resilience for marine fisheries, we need to understand adaptive capacity of both biophysical and human systems, and explore the need and potential for transformations at multiple levels to ensure sustainable oceans and fisheries. Because of the complexity of the marine social-ecological system and the interdisciplinary nature of the issues involved, we need to assess these measures at multiple scales (local, regional and global) and domains (biophysical, economic, social and legal) to avoid mal-adaptation and incompatibility in achieving sustainable fisheries goals.

Firstly, we need to better understand the future of the oceans and fisheries and the associated risks and uncertainties. Secondly, we need to evaluate the adaptive capacity of both the natural and human systems to these expected future changes. Thirdly, we need to identify and evaluate options for transformative measures that mitigate or reduce impacts from climate change and ocean acidification. In this 2-day session, we will bring together researchers and practitioners in the fields of oceanography, fisheries science, management, economics, governance and legal studies to discuss their latest findings on: – assessing the vulnerability, risks and uncertainties of future fisheries under climate change and ocean acidification – scenario development for fisheries – exploration of possible adaptation and/or transformative pathways that can lead to sustainable development in the ocean under climate change.


William Cheung, Nereus Program, The University of British Columbia, w.cheung(at); Wilf Swartz, Nereus Program, The University of British Columbia, y.ota(at); Ryan Rykaczewski, The University of South Carolina, ryk(at); Rebecca Asch, Princeton University, rasch(at)

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