Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Institute of Aquaculture Stirling: teaching the poorest people in Bangladesh

Experts at Stirling University's Institute of Aquaculture have set up a community education centre in Bangladesh to teach local people how to get the most from fish. In the process, they have also become involved in running a night school. Fish is by far the largest source of animal protein in the average person’s diet and growing demand for it is putting pressure on the country’s aquatic systems. Realising this, Dr Shinn saw the need to teach a largely illiterate population the importance of conserving the country’s native aquatic species.

“We already know how effectively education and conservation initiatives can be used to protect endangered species, as well as sustainably managing others,” he explains. “So we felt there was an urgent need to promote greater understanding and appreciation of Bangladesh’s natural history among ordinary people. As fish is so central to their daily lives, it seemed obvious to build the idea around the aquactic environment.”

Working with Professor Mostafa Ali Reza Hossain from the Bangladesh Agricultural University (BAU), Dr Shinn set to work to provide an educational centre in Mymensingh, to which people of all ages would have free access. “We were gifted a building by BAU, which we renovated inside and out before setting up exhibits in five rooms,” he explains. Read more...

This blog is written by Martin Little The Aquaculturists, published and supported by the International Aquafeed Magazine from Perendale Publishers.

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  1. Hello Martin - its great what my colleague Andy + others at BAU are doing - more power to his elbow .
    Whilst writing thought you would be interested for your blog in the Aquashops project we are working on in W Kenya along with partners Farm Africa Imani Development and the Research into Use DFID programme
    See and hear nice interview at

    Best wishes
    Will Leschen
    Inst of Aquaculture Univ of Stirling UK

  2. Dear Martin,
    one other point I would like to infrm you of is that the Inst of Aquaculture Univ of Stirling is currently undergoing threats of cuts and or redundancies which will significantly affect the ability of the Inst to continue its internationally renowned teaching, research and development work. Details can be found at the Inst of Aquaculture 38 Years Facebook site!/pages/Institute-of-Aquaculture-Stirling-38-Years/137746679624381 - please contact me at if you would like more details
    Best wishes Will