School of Global Studies

Research Packages

Forecasting with fishers


Forecasting with fishersA fisherman keeps his mobile phone in a waterproof plastic pouch. Fishers routinely carry basic handsets that can help them communicate up to ten miles from the shore.

RP1 Hazards and cultural understanding

  1. Ethnographic research in three study villages
  2. House-to-house surveys, formal and semi-formal interviews, collection of life-histories
  3. Participant observation

RP2 Tracking daily fishing forays

  1. Tracking fishing trips with logs and “fishing diaries”
  2. Individual interviews and focus group discussions on fishers’ knowledge about weather/sea conditions and their use of forecasts

Climate science & weather observation

  1. Collating scientific data on local atmospheric and weather conditions
  2. Fishers’ direct observations (RP2), and daily forecasts provided by the project’s collaborators at the India Meteorological Department (IMD), and the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS).
  3. Focus groups and sharing of feedback with IMD and INCOIS.   

Co-producing bespoke weather bulletins

  1. Dissemination of IMD and INCOIS forecasts in the local language (Malayalam) through multiple channels of Radio Monsoon, including loudspeakers at boat-launching sites or main village spaces, free online/mobile service through the server our tech partner Gram Vaani and VHF radio.
  2. Weekly focus groups and individual interviews with fishers for feedback on the accuracy and usefulness of the weather forecasts; feedback sharing with IMD and INCOIS. 
  3. Development and testing of alternative platforms and technologies in collaboration with local fishers, and fishers’ organisations as well as local partners

Top banner image: Rain clouds gather off the shore of Puthiyathura, a traditional fishing village.