Christine Knott

Email: christine.knott[at]mun[dot]ca

Dr. Charles Mather (Department of Geography, Memorial University)

BA Anthropology & Women Studies, McGill
MWS Memorial University
PhD Sociology Memorial University

Title of the Project:
Ocean Frontier Institute, M3 Social License in Aquaculture, Canada’s Aquaculture Frontiers.

Research Project Description:
The idea that the ocean represents a new ‘frontier’ for economic growth and development is back on the agenda of academics and policy makers. The ‘ocean as frontier’ concept is, for instance, key to prominent global initiatives such as the blue economy and blue growth that promise to deliver food, jobs and a source of livelihood to a growing global population. Not surprisingly, aquaculture plays a central role in ocean frontier discourse and policy. Aquaculture production in these discourses is positioned to make up the shortfall of fish as food from wild capture sources, it will address global food insecurity, and it will provide much needed jobs in remote coastal areas.

In this theme we are interested in critically assessing the concept of frontier in relation to aquaculture. We do so by engaging with an ‘emerging literature’ on resource frontiers. In this writing, resource frontiers are understood as relational zones of economy, nature and society. These are dynamic spaces that disrupt existing institutional orders and involve the imposition of new property regimes and new forms of commodification and resource exploitation. Given these transformations, resource frontiers are frequently sites of economic and political struggles over space and access to resources. Research on resource frontiers provides an interesting and potentially productive way of thinking about Canadian aquaculture as a resource frontier.

Previous Research:

  • “Taking Stock of Newfoundland and Labrador Research on Gender, Fisheries and Aquaculture.”, Memorial University, (2018).
  • “Aquaculture occupational health and safety: Canada Profile. Ocean Frontier Institute and SafetyNet Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Research.”, Memorial University, (2017-2018).

Research Interests:
Social ecological aspects of coastal communities; rural coastal labour; qualitative labour shortages; feminist political economy; social ecological aspects of fisheries and aquaculture.

Select Publications:

  • Christine Knott. Contentious Mobilities and Cheaper Labour: Employment-Related Geographical Mobility in a Seafood Processing Community in NB, Canada. Canadian Journal of Sociology 41 (3): 375-398.
  • Christine Knott and Barbara Neis. Privatization, Financialization and Ocean Grabbing in New Brunswick Herring Fisheries and Salmon Aquaculture. Marine Policy, 80: 10-18.
  • Christine Knott and John Phyne. 2018. “Rehousing Good Citizens: Gender, Class and Family ideals in The St. John’s Housing Authority Survey of the Inner City of St. John’s 51-52”. Acadiensis XLVII, no.1 (Winter/Spring): 178-207.


Department of Geography

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Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000