Diverse pathways for climate resilience in marine fishery systems

Jacob G. Eurich*, Whitney R. Friedman, Kristin M. Kleisner, Lily Z. Zhao, Christopher M. Free, Meghan Fletcher, Julia G. Mason, Kanae Tokunaga, Alba Aguion, Andrea Dell'Apa, Mark Dickey‐Collas, Rod Fujita, Christopher D. Golden, Anne B. Hollowed, Gakushi Ishimura, Kendra A. Karr, Stephen Kasperski, Yuga Kisara, Jacqueline D. Lau, Sangeeta MangubhaiLayla Osman, Gretta T. Pecl, Jörn O. Schmidt, Edward H. Allison, Patrick J. Sullivan, Joshua E. Cinner, Roger B. Griffis, Timothy R. McClanahan, Richard C. Stedman, Katherine E. Mills

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Both the ecological and social dimensions of fisheries are being affected by climate change. As a result, policymakers, managers, scientists and fishing communities are seeking guidance on how to holistically build resilience to climate change. Numerous studies have highlighted key attributes of resilience in fisheries, yet concrete examples that explicitly link these attributes to social‐ecological outcomes are lacking. To better understand climate resilience, we assembled 18 case studies spanning ecological, socio‐economic, governance and geographic contexts. Using a novel framework for evaluating 38 resilience attributes, the case studies were systematically assessed to understand how attributes enable or inhibit resilience to a given climate stressor. We found population abundance, learning capacity, and responsive governance were the most important attributes for conferring resilience, with ecosystem connectivity, place attachment, and accountable governance scoring the strongest across the climate‐resilient fisheries. We used these responses to develop an attribute typology that describes robust sources of resilience, actionable priority attributes and attributes that are case specific or require research. We identified five fishery archetypes to guide stakeholders as they set long‐term goals and prioritize actions to improve resilience. Lastly, we found evidence for two pathways to resilience: (1) building ecological assets and strengthening communities, which we observed in rural and small‐scale fisheries, and (2) building economic assets and improving effective governance, which was demonstrated in urban and wealthy fisheries. Our synthesis presents a novel framework that can be directly applied to identify approaches, pathways and actionable levers for improving climate resilience in fishery systems.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFish and Fisheries
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)38-59
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Adaptive capacity
  • Cimate change
  • Coastal communities
  • Fisheries management
  • Global change
  • Social-ecological systems


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