Frequently Asked Questions

29 November 2023

What is the Coalition for Fisheries Transparency?
The Coalition for Fisheries Transparency is a network of international civil society organizations that work towards advancing transparency and accountability in fisheries governance and management. United around the Global Charter for Fisheries Transparency, Coalition members
urge governments around the world to adopt its principles into law and practice. The Charter comprises key transparency priorities in fisheries management that must be addressed in order to combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing and overfishing, prevent human rights and labor abuses at sea, ensure sustainable fisheries management, increase equitable participation in fisheries decision-making, and enable thriving coastal communities.

What does the Coalition seek to achieve?
The Coalition for Fisheries Transparency seeks to bring about equitable, sustainable, and well-governed fisheries, free from harmful fishing practices and human rights and labor abuses. We will do this by connecting and supporting civil society organizations (CSOs) to advance and
accelerate fisheries transparency policies around the world.

Who comprises the Coalition?
Members are at the heart of the initiative as they drive the Coalition’s work by identifying the challenges to advancing transparency in their regions and determining priority areas for projects. Membership is composed of civil society organizations (CSO) around the world that
work on policy reform related to industrial fisheries and small-scale fisheries. A full list of members can be found on the Members page. Leading the Coalition is a steering committee of civil society organizations, including the Environmental Justice Foundation, Global Fishing Watch, Oceana, Seafood Legacy, and the WWF Network. Together, representatives from these organizations utilize their reach and expertise in fisheries transparency to guide the Coalition and its staff. The Coalition’s Secretariat supports the members and the Steering Committee by advancing strategy development through facilitation and coordination, supporting learning and capacity building through the creation of publications, workshops, and exchanges, and drawing attention of key decision makers and media through a global communications campaign. The Secretariat is composed of a director, policy analyst, communications manager, and associate.

What is the Global Charter for Transparency?
The Global Charter for Transparency is a set of 10 policy principles developed to support CSOs in bringing about effective change in fisheries governance and transparency to combat fisheries mismanagement, illegal fishing and human rights abuses at sea. The Charter provides a framework for member organizations to unite around to urge governments to implement fisheries transparency policy reforms. While intended for the entire fisheries sector and readily implementable in industrial fisheries, the Coalition acknowledges that some principles in the Charter require further adaptation before they can be effectively applied to all small-scale fisheries.

How do I become a member of the Coalition for Fisheries Transparency?
The Coalition consists of voluntary members. Organizations may request to join the Coalition by submitting a Membership Application form in English, Spanish, or French. The Coalition’s Secretariat will review each application and approve or flag the application for further evaluation
by the Steering Committee. If flagged, the Steering Committee will discuss the application at their next meeting, with a decision on membership made by consensus. The Coalition will provide a response to new member applications within six weeks of submission. To mitigate any potential conflicts of interest, the Coalition does not extend formal membership to governments, industry entities, or CSOs that operate and/or advocate on behalf of commercial industry. However, these stakeholders are welcome to participate in the Coalition as Affiliates and may request to become an Affiliate by submitting this form.

What are the requirements of membership?
Member expectations and requirements can be found in the Membership Handbook and accompanying Code of Conduct.

Is there a cost for Coalition membership?
There are no membership fees.

Are members financially compensated?
Members are not compensated and should disclose any conflict of interest, including financial or other interest that is adverse to the Coalition’s interests or would otherwise interfere with performance in the Coalition.

What if my organization does not work on all the principles under the Charter, can I still join?
Yes. The Coalition does not expect members to work on all principles under the Charter, however members must endorse the Charter in full as its principles serve as the Coalition’s guiding framework and have a verifiable track record of working in the fisheries governance and
management space.

How is the Coalition for Fisheries Transparency different from other transparency-focused groups?
A number of organizations and coalitions are already doing important work to increase fisheries transparency through directly partnering with governments, promoting improved management of regional fisheries management organizations, and working closely with industry to enhance their transparency and traceability practices. The Coalition for Fisheries Transparency is adding to these on-going efforts by centering its approach on civil society organizations, helping them to accelerate transparency policy reforms through government advocacy. The Coalition’s focus on civil society enables the Coalition to complement the efforts of these other initiatives to collectively move the needle forward on transparency. The Coalition recognizes that civil society is just one – albeit keenly important – point of leverage to encourage policy change in promotion of transparency and larger government accountability.

How is the Coalition funded?
The work of the Coalition for Fisheries Transparency is made possible thanks to the generous
support of Bloomberg Philanthropies, Oceans 5, and Oceankind. The Coalition does not accept
funding from industry or government sources.