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 (CSOs) that work towards advancing transparency and accountability in fisheries governance and management. United around the Global Charter for Fisheries Transparency, Coalition’s 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 fishing and overfishing, prevent human rights and labor abuses from happening at sea, ensure strong fisheries management, increase equitable participation in fisheries decision-making, and enable thriving coastal communities.

What does the Coalition aim to achieve?
The Coalition for Fisheries Transparency aims to bring about equitable, sustainable, and well-governed fisheries, free from harmful fishing practices and human rights and labor abuses. We do this by connecting and supporting CSOs in their efforts to advance and accelerate fisheries transparency policies around the world.

Who is part of the Coalition?
Members are at the heart of the initiative as they drive the Coalition’s work by identifying the challenges and priorities to advancing transparency in their countries and/or regions. Members are CSOs around the world that work on fisheries policy reforms. A full list of members can be found on the Members page. Guiding the Coalition is a steering committee of civil society organizations, co-chaired by the Environmental Justice Foundation and Oceana,and joined by Accountability.Fish, Global Fishing Watch, Indonesia Ocean Justice Initiative (IOJI), PRCM (The Regional Partnership for the Conservation of the Coastal and Marine Zone), Seafood Legacy, and the WWF Network. Together, representatives from these organizations provide assistance and share their expertise in fisheries transparency to achieve the Coalition’s mission. The Coalition’s Secretariat supplements members’ efforts through assistance in the areas of communications, research and policy analysis, coordination and partnership building, and strategy development. The Secretariat is composed of a director, policy analyst, communications manager, and associate.

What is the Global Charter for Fisheries Transparency?
The Global Charter for Fisheries 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 and illegal fishing, and to prevent human rights and labor abuses from happening at sea. The Charter provides a framework for member organizations to urge governments to implement fisheries transparency policy reforms, in law and in practice. 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 does an organization 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.

Can an organization that does not work on all Charter principles still join the Coalition?
The Coalition does not expect members to work on all Charter principles. However, when joining the Coalition, members agree to the Charter in full as its principles serve as the Coalition’s guiding framework.

How is the Coalition for Fisheries Transparency different from other transparency-focused efforts?
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 organizing CSOs, 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 in fisheries globally.

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