Her PhD project seeks to understand where, why, and with what social-ecological consequences international conflicts over shared fish stocks occur. The project merges global-scale database analyses with case study approaches to combine the strength of global descriptive understandings of conflicts with in-depth analytical insights. The findings are combined with existing scenarios for climate change, which will be used to explore high-risk areas for future conflict. This understanding will enable the development of recommendations for: how to cope with and adapt to change, how to reduce the risk of conflict, and increase the prospects for sustainable, equitable use of shared marine resources.
Spijkers is a cotutelle PhD student enrolled at both the Stockholm Resilience Centre and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (James Cook University, Australia). She holds a Master of Arts in European Studies (completed at the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium) and a Master of Science in Sustainability from the Stockholm Resilience Centre’s programme social-ecological resilience for sustainable development (completed at the Stockholm University, Sweden).
Spijkers is also Nereus fellow. The Nereus Program is a global interdisciplinary initiative created to further our knowledge of how best to attain sustainability for the world’s oceans.
Awards and achievements:
Research news | 2019-06-27
New study presents and analyzes first longitudinal database on fisheries conflict
Research news | 2018-06-27
Overfishing, fractured international relationships and political conflicts loom as fish migrate more unpredictably because of climate change. Here is how to deal with it.
Research news | 2018-05-28
While studies on fisheries conflicts are abundant, confusion remains about what actually constitutes a conflict. A new review paper identifies four key areas of research that still need to be addressed
Research news | 2017-07-01
New study examines how a change in migration patterns of the northeast Atlantic mackerel led to intergovernmental dispute
2019 - Journal / article
International fisheries conflict can cause crises by threatening maritime security, ecosystems and livelihoods. In a highly connected world, the possibility for localized fisheries conflict to escalate into ‘systemic risks’, where risk in one domain such as food supply can increase risk in another domain such as maritime security and international relations, is growing. However, countries often choose hard-line actions rather ...
2018 - Journal / article
The ocean is a critical source of nutrition for billions of people, with potential to yield further food, profits, and employment in the future (1). But fisheries face a serious new challenge as climate change drives the ocean to conditions not experienced historically. Local, national, regional, and international fisheries are substantially underprepared for geographic shifts in marine animals driven by climate change over th...
2018 - Journal / article
Conflict over marine fishery resources is a growing security concern. Experts expect that global changes in our climate, food systems and oceans may spark or exacerbate resource conflicts. An initial scan of 803 relevant papers and subsequent intensive review of 31 fisheries conflict studies, focused on subnational and international conflicts, suggests that four substantial scientific gaps need addressing to improve our unders...
2017 - Journal / article
Future impacts of climate change on marine fisheries have the potential to negatively influence a wide range of socio-economic factors, including food security, livelihoods and public health, and even to reshape development trajectories and spark transboundary conflict. Yet there is considerable variability in the vulnerability of countries around the world to these effects. We calculate a vulnerability index of 147 countries...