A few weeks have passed since the end of my CBE summer fellowship at the FAO and the magnitude of the experience is just starting to sink in. I am grateful to the Center for the Blue Economy for making it possible to enhance my study of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management through this invaluable experience. My time in Rome was enriched by my wonderful colleagues who made me feel welcome from day one and included me as a full member of the team. I benefited from their expertise and guidance and have come away with a more nuanced understanding of the issues impacting resource sustainability, fisheries value chains, community livelihoods and food security. I was exposed to the latest in fisheries management through special events at the FAO and access to a wide range of technical documents. Traveling on mission to Sao Tomé and Principe allowed me to apply the knowledge I have gained from academic study to a real-world setting and engage with stakeholders working at all levels of government and society.
July was an exciting and enriching month for me split between the island nation of São Tomé and Principe and FAO headquarters in Rome. I spent the first week of July in the capital of São Tomé participating in a FAO mission in support of that country’s first ever National Fisheries Week and in response to a request by the government to work with FAO to develop a national Blue Growth strategy. Continue reading
My first three weeks at the Food & Agricultural Organization (FAO) in Rome have been all about meeting people, making connections and learning the ins and outs of this specialized agency of the United Nations. I am interning with the Blue Growth Initiative, housed within the Fisheries Department, which seeks to promote sustainable economic growth that emphasizes sound management of aquatic resources and ecosystem services and improves livelihoods and social equity. It is very exciting to be working on a program that takes a holistic view of and approach to tackling the seemingly intractable issues surrounding over-exploitation of marine resources, poverty and gender inequality.