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Social-Ecological Systems Meta-Analysis Database: Variables

Variable TypeCategorical
Variable Component TypeActor
Variable KindComponent
ThemeLeadership (learn about themes)
ProjectsSESMAD, Fiji fisheries
QuestionWhat type of leadership does this group have, if any?
Select OptionsNo leader, Formal leader, Informal leader
Importance"Leadership may have an impact both on the emergence and maintenance of collective action, as well as on the effectiveness of the governance system. Additionally, leadership may be particularly important to understand processes of governance change. From a political economy perspective, leadership can be defined as individuals or groups within a community that often contribute more resources to the production of that good than the rest of the community (Olson 1965). In so doing, leaders frequently bear a disproportionate amount of the costs of collective action. Leaders have also been characterized for their sense of opportunity, social skills and knowledge. The governance activities associated to leaders range from reducing the costs of collective decision making and finding effective solutions for a particular environment (Ostrom et al. 1999) to developing a common vision and sense of shared problems (Folke et al. 2005)."

"A leader is a singular individual/agent with entrepreneurial skills, high levels of motivation, respected as a leader, and who makes a personal commitment to commons governance. A formal leader is an agent who/that has a formal recognition as a leader (e.g., elected, appointed as a leader with a leadership mandate). An informal leader is an agent who emerges as a leader without formal position or leadership role (e.g., elders)"


Theory Usages

TheoryValue Used
Accountable leadershipFormal leader or informal leader
Conditions for general resilienceFormal or Informal

Associated Studies

Study Citation

Component Usages

ComponentValue UsedExplanation
Galapagos Artisan FishermenFormal leaderThere is an elected president for each of the four fishing cooperatives, one of which represents the fishing sector on the PMB.
"New Order" Indonesian Central Government (1965-1998)Formal leaderSuharto was a strong formal leader of the government.
Wakatobi managers["Formal leader"]Ultimately the central government
Australian Antarctic Division["Formal leader"]The AAD has a formal director that overseas the entire Division. They also have a head Manager for each of their Branches under the Division.
Charles Darwin Foundation CDF is managed by an executive director who is appointed by a board.
Galapagos Tourism SectorFormal leader
California Sanctuary Recreational Users["No leader"]Recreational user companies may have an owner, but there is no sole recreational user leader.
California Groundfish Fishermen["Informal leader"]The Fishermen’s Marketing Association has a board of directors with a Monterey representative, but the leaders typically are the most outspoken and involved individuals.
California State and Federal Fisheries Agencies[]The Pacific Fishery Management Council retains leadership over the other teams (e.g. habitat team, budget team, management team, advisory team) and the council has a Chair and a Vice-Chair. The PFMC groundfish management team has an official Chair and Vice-Chair. The Secretary of Commerce has overall authority over this group's actions.
Community A["Formal leader"]
Community B["Formal leader"]
Macquarie Island ManagersFormal leaderFormal leaders are defined by legislation and management plans; and hold authority over the Marine Park and Nature Reserve, respectively.
Svalbard Resource Managers The Governor of Svalbard has the ultimate authority (Svalbard Environmental Protection Act 2001), and is assisted by the Coast Guard for monitoring fisheries & travel compliance, and the Polar Institute for monitoring environmental components.
Svalbard Tourism AECO has formal leadership structure. There is an Executive Director, along with several elected committees.
Community G["Formal leader"]
Gili EcoTrust on Gili Trawangan["", "Formal leader"]
Misool Eco Resort[""]
Indonesian "Adat" CommunitiesInformal leaderAs with coordination, this question can be taken to refer to leadership at both the intra-group level (within each adat community) and the inter-group (between adat communities) level. Individual adat communities and inter-community adat movements have informal leadership, but there is also formal leadership of the adat through AMAN (Aliansi Masyarakat Adat Nusantara, the Alliance of Indigenous People of the Archipelago).
Large Extractive Industries in IndonesiaNo leaderSome sub parts of this group had leadership at some point (i.e. Bob Hasan and the Apkindo group of timber companies - see Barr 1998). However this has been the exception to the rule - there is no broader coordination of extractive industries, and even Hasan's leadership of the timber companies was relatively short lived (basically from the late 1980s-1998).
Indonesian Local entrepreneursNo leaderThere is no leadership for this group.
Indonesian District Governments Does this refer to inter or intra group? Individual district governments have formal leaders, but there is no leader representing all district governments.
"Reformasi" Indonesian Central Government (1998-2012)Formal leaderThe government is led by an elected president.
Civil society organizations in Indonesia ?
ICCAT Contracting Parties No leaderThere is no formal or informal leader
ICCAT Western MembersNo leader
ICCAT Eastern MembersNo leaderThere is no formal or informal leader of the group.
Ozone Nation States No leader
Ozone Depleting Substance Industrial ProducersNo leaderAt the beginning of the Montreal Protocol, DuPont emerged as an informal leader. However, at present, there are no leaders.
Ozone SecretariatFormal leaderThe Secretariat has a permanent staff based at the United Nations Environment Programme Office in Nairobi, Kenya.
ICPR nations (1976-1986)Informal leaderThe Netherlands promoted the inception of the ICPR, and the approval of the Chemical Convention.
ICPR nations (1986-2000)Informal leaderSee "ICPR Nations (1987-1986)"
Rhine chemical firms 
Rhine agricultural sector 
GBR government co-managersFormal leaderBoth agencies have formal Directors.
GBR recreational fishersInformal leaderThe sports fishing groups have leaders. These leaders are voted in but the vast majority of recreational fishers are not part of these groups.
Wetfish Fishermen 
GBR fisheries managersFormal leaderOrganisational leader
GBR commercial fishersInformal leaderSome members join the QSIA which has a few formal representatives promoting fisher interests. However, not all commercial fishing sectors join this group. There isn't a formal leader of the sector as a whole.
National Marine Sanctuaries Office of NOAA[]Project and goal leads are identified by position. The national office has authority over regional offices, however, regional offices have a Superintendent and each goal has a specified coordinator. An advisory council assumes leadership for interested stakeholders. The Secretary of Commerce has overall authority on all sanctuary activities.
Raja Ampat Tourism["Formal leader"]Tourism department of Raja Ampat government
Australian Toothfish Fishers["Informal leader"]There is some informal leadership through COLTO, particularly though the chairman who heavily lobbies on behalf of COLTO and all legal toothfish operations. The chairman invests his time heavily in traveling to meetings, engaging with industry, NGOs, scientists and others to promote the image of sustainable legal toothfish operators (See e.g., .
NWHI Monument Co-Trusteeship ["Formal leader"]co-trustees
Wakatobi Bajau fishersFormal leaderAll Bajau villages have chiefs, who are elected. There are also hamlet chiefs who are also elected. Chiefs are well respected (Interview with Chui-Ling Tam, June 2015).
GMR managersFormal leaderFormal, elected leaders/representatives for each of the sectors on the PMB formal leader of the IMA is the Minister of Environment.
Riparian Nations (1976-1986) 
Raja Ampat Artisanal Fishers["Formal leader"]VIllages that practice sasi management (traditional management practices) have village leaders, traditional leaders, and religious leaders. They all play a role in controlling use and access to marine resources and are elected by popular vote. There is one village leader (kepala kampung) who serves as the link between the higher local level government officials and central Raja Ampat government (Mcleod, 2009)
CORALINA["Formal leader"]There is a director of the regional office.
NWHI ResearchersNo leaderBecause these are different groups of researchers, there is no one leader for this actor group.
California Academic Researchers[]Various projects have various leaders, typically a principal investigator (PI). PIs can be searched here: http://sanctuarysimon.org/regional_sections/other/network_partners.php
Community C["Formal leader"]
Community D["Formal leader"]
Seaflower artisanal fishers["Formal leader"]Fishing cooperatives have elected leaders
Australian Fisheries Management Authority["Formal leader"]The Australian Fisheries Management Authority is a government agency with a formal bureaucratic structure.
Raja Ampat Managers["Formal leader"]There is a head of the overall MPA network, and each local level MPA has its own head.
Community E["Formal leader"]
Svalbard Shrimp FishersNo leader
Community F["Formal leader"]
Community H["Formal leader"]
Galapagos Charles Darwin FoundationFormal leaderFormal - CDF is managed by an executive director who is appointed by a board.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Director of National Parks ["Formal leader"]The holder of the office of the Director of National Parks is appointed by the Government of the Commonwealth of Australia.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Commercial Fishers["Formal leader", "Informal leader"]There is no formal leader of the commercial fishing sector as a whole. However, some commercial fishers are members of CFA and WFSA which has formal, elected representatives that promote fisher interests, although, not all commercial fishers join these groups.
Cenderwasih fishers["Formal leader"]Villages have elected leaders and head of tribes (kepala suku)
Cenderwasih managers["Formal leader"]Ultimately the central government
Falkland Islands Government (FIG) Fisheries Managers["", "Formal leader"]Formal: Management has a hierarchal structure, but also everyone has their own responsibilities. Small team. No informal leader.
Patagonian Squid Trawlers[""]Formal FIFCA board with chair and vice-chair. Holds weight. Leader rotates. No informal leader
New Zealand Fishery Managers["", "Formal leader"]Deepwater Manager has a staff of 5. Formal leader.
New Zealand Arrow Squid Fishers[""]Formal: Deepwater Secretariat – responsible for coordination, developing options, participating in process, technological advice. Deepwater has a board and same leader has been in it for a while.
California market squid fishermen[""]Formal: Senior members tend to carry a lot of weight, but official representatives sit on the Fish and Wildlife advisory panel as a spokesperson. The California Wetfish Producers Association has a board of directors and an executive committee. Informal: Senior members carry weight with others
Indonesian Institute of Sciences - LIPINot Applicable
California Department of Fish and Wildlife Market Squid Managers[""]Formal: Senior Environmental Scientists are leaders
Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation (ICMBio)[""]
Brazilian Institute of the Environment & Renewable Natural Resources (IBAMA)Missing
Isla Caballo AMPR Costa Rica["", "Formal leader"]
Paquera-Tambor AMPR Costa Rica["", "Formal leader"]
Secretary of State for the Environment of Pará (SEMA) in BrazilMissing
Association of Users in the Caete-Teperacu RESEX (ASSUREMACATA) in Brazil["", "Formal leader"]
Lombok aquaculture farmers["", "Formal leader"]Formal leaders are need to from formal groups and apply for subsidy aid, but in leadership is not strong.
SCUBA diving businesses on Gili Trawangan["", "Informal leader"]Some businesses are organized through GIDA
Gili Indah Dive Association (GIDA)["", "Formal leader"]
Palito-Montero AMPR Costa Rica["", "Formal leader"]