Document Type


Publication Title

Human Ecology Review


The Australian National University

Publication Date


Publisher location

Canberra, Australia

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Abstract/ Summary

This paper reports on ethnographic research aimed at understanding what resilience means to those living within fishery-dependent communities. We draw on semi-structured and oral history interviews, focus groups, and household and business interviews in four Maine fishing communities to examine the reflections of fishermen and other community members on the past, present, and future of their communities, including the threats they face and how they are able to respond to them. Based on our analysis, we identify broad qualitative indicators of resilience: survival, social identity, diversification, getting by, and optimism. The indicators of resilience that we identify are difficult to fully understand using secondary data and, therefore, we argue that understanding them also requires an ethnographic research approach that focuses on the practices of fishermen and the context in which those fishermen live.

Citation/Publisher Attribution

"Johnson, T.R., Henry, A., & Thompson, C. Identifying Qualitative Indicators of Social Resilience in Small-scale Fishing Communities: An Emphasis on Perceptions and Practice. Human Ecology Review, 20(2):97-115 "

Publisher Statement

© 2014 The Australian National University


publisher's version of the published document