Title: Repetitive discrepancy between espoused and in-use action theories for fishery intervention in Grand-Popo, Benin

Authors: Augustin T. Kouévi; Barbara Van Mierlo; Cees Leeuwis

Addresses: Communication and Innovation Studies Group, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 8130, 6700 EW Wageningen, The Netherlands. ' Communication and Innovation Studies Group, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 8130, 6700 EW Wageningen, The Netherlands. ' Communication and Innovation Studies Group, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 8130, 6700 EW Wageningen, The Netherlands

Abstract: In order to be able to adapt successfully to eco-challenges, interest in change-oriented learning is growing around the world. The authors of this paper aim to assess the occurrence of learning for effective action-taking in successive fishery problem-solving interventions in the municipality of Grand-Popo, South-Western Benin, where interventions aimed at fishery development have been taking place for several decades with limited outcomes. Case studies were examined to investigate learning by intervention parties from generation to generation of interventions, with reference to organisational learning theory. Historical analysis of intervention processes within their context based on document review, conversations and observations helped in describing and tracking the intervention processes and their outputs since the 1950s. Findings indicate some single-loop learning by some interventionists, but mainly continuing discrepancy between espoused and in-use intervention/action theories. The learning needed to improve the effectiveness of interventions is absent.

Keywords: fisheries; problem solving; action theories; improved effectiveness; Benin; West Africa; Grand-Popo; fishing industry; repetitive discrepancies; fishery intervention; eco-challenges; ecology; fishery development; intervention parties; organisational learning; single-loop learning; interventionists; change.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLC.2011.044187

International Journal of Learning and Change, 2011 Vol.5 No.2, pp.114 - 138

Received: 14 Mar 2011
Accepted: 25 Sep 2011

Published online: 06 Dec 2011 *

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