Featured News A school of sustainable fisheries students

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Tue, 28 Aug 2018

A school of sustainable fisheries students

small blue fish and coral
Photograph: © Dr Robin Beaman

Cairns has shared its oceanic, fisheries and governance knowledge with 28 students from 12 coastal African nations who are visiting Australia to study sustainable fisheries.

The eight-week course, Ocean Management: Sustainable Fisheries and Governance, aimed to strengthen ties between Australia and Africa.

James Cook University lecturers have taught classes in coastal and reef tourism, environmental law and world heritage issues, coral reef systems, maritime conservation and conflicts between different development priorities.

“It’s been a pleasure to welcome the students to Cairns and share local expertise with them on issues of sustainability and governance, which are important to all coastal communities,” JCU’s Head of Law, Associate Professor Mandy Shircore said.

“The students are also learning a great deal from our local seafood industry, as well as gaining an insight into Indigenous fisheries, development and trade.”

The participants are from government ministries, NGOs and the private sector. The course has taken them from Jervis Bay on the New South Wales south coast to Cairns, and will conclude with two weeks in the Indian Ocean nation of Mauritius.

Ocean Management: Sustainable Fisheries and Governance is a collaboration between the University of Wollongong’s Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS) and the University of Mauritius, under the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Australia Awards Africa program.

Professor Alistair McIlgorm, Capacity Development Leader at ANCORS, said the course was an incredible opportunity for the participants to be immersed in how to address the issues impacting ocean and marine resources.

“We also move beyond the classroom and into the field, to experience how businesses are meeting the challenges that our oceans are facing, a sort of getting their feet wet, seeing ocean entrepreneurship,” he said.

“This knowledge can then provide the building blocks to industry and trade development in their home countries and help the participants to drive change in fisheries management to underpin sustainable fish trade and sector development.”