Taryn Pereira

AREA OF EXPERTISE: Environmental Justice, Blue Justice, scholar-activism, environmental education, participatory ocean governance, ocean defenders, small-scale fisher rights  

AFFILIATION: Coastal Justice Network, Environmental Learning Research Centre, Rhodes University, (South Africa)

My research focuses on the potential for transdisciplinary sustainability research to contribute to political struggles for environmental justice.  The key question I am working with at the moment is: What are the core practices and priorities for re-orienting transdisciplinary ocean research to be in solidarity with social movements of small-scale fishers struggling for blue justice in South Africa?


Taryn is part of the Hub’s South Africa team that has invested in working with small-scale fishers communities to better understand their needs. Over time, researchers in the Coastal Justice Network (CJN) have built partnerships with small-scale fishers (SSF) and coastal Indigenous communities. Through these partnerships, researchers, SSF leaders, and environmental justice organisations have been able to respond collaboratively to a range of injustices perpetrated on coastal communities and environments, including: 

  • social harms – the criminalisation of livelihoods and associated killing of fishers in Marine Protected Areas
  • environmental harms – expansion of coastal mining and offshore oil and gas operations
  • economic harms – the blocking of SSF rights by industrial fishing associations

Read more from this Impact Story – here >>

Making waves
  • Taryn was a speaker at the ‘A Global Spotlight on Ocean Defenders webinar that explored the ongoing struggles and efforts of ocean defenders globally, and shed light on the potential avenues through which allies and organizations can provide support and protect ocean defenders. This webinar is of interest a diverse audience of ocean defenders, conservation practitioners, researchers, policy-makers, and funders committed to protecting oceans and people – watch webinar here >>
  • CASE STUDY: Ocean-defending small-scale fishers in South Africa say NO to seismic surveys – written by Taryn Pereira – read here >>
  • BLOG POST: Reflecting on opportunities and tensions in academic solidarity practices with environmental human rights defender by Elaine Webster, Taryn Pereira and Elisa Morgeraread here >>
Recent publication

Pereira, T., & Erwin, K. (2023). Surfacing solidarity praxis in transdisciplinary research for blue justice. Ecosystems and People, 19(1), 2260502.  – read here >>