About Us

The Pacific Fisheries Leadership programme (PFLP) funded by the New Zealand Government, is implemented by a consortium led by the Pacific Community (SPC) with the Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA), University of Queensland (UQ), and the Centre for Adaptive Leadership (CLA).

Selected participants will engage in a modular programme including Leadership for Effectiveness; Leadership Experience; Leadership for Change; and Coaching Support. Participants may gain accreditation, including award courses (‘Inclusive Strategic Leadership’ and ‘People and Teams’) within the University of Queensland Graduate Certifcate in Leadership. The programme is based on real world issues and experience and will be adapted to the context and needs of participants. 

Expected long term outcomes for the fisheries sector includes improved quality and diversity of leadership and management in priority sectoral areas and increased cooperation between relevant participants and their institutions. These objectives conform to progressing implementation of the “Regional Roadmap for Sustainable Pacific Fisheries.”

This programme is a signifcant investment by New Zealand and by the members of the consortium. As such, PFLP wants to attract not only the most relevant, but the most committed and interested participants possible

Key Elements of the Programme

  • Leadership for Effectiveness – including a three week workshop and an option to complete a University of Queensland micro-qualification.  This will be run four times up to 2022.
  • Leadership Experience – opportunities for workplace attachment relevant short courses and other experiences tailored to the needs of each participant.
  • Leadership for Change – including two – four day workshops and a workplace project. These will each be run three times up to 2022.
  • Coaching: provided by experienced coaches to each participant – up to 15 session over the period of the full programme.
  • Note – some participants will may only engage with some of these elements of the programme.


The impression of “Angela” a recent graduate of the Leadership for Effectiveness cohort 1, and current participant of Leadership for Change and Leadership Experience. Angela is an inshore fisheries officer from Papua New Guinea. She has a postgraduate research certificate in scientific research :

"Since my participation in the programme I have not only discovered myself as a fisheries officer but also as a mum, wife, daughter and a sister to my family. The PFLP programme is designed to get participants to realise that there is a whole lot more to just being leaders. There are tools and many other attributes that you will learn about leadership through this programme.

I have been able to run my own mini workshops within my unit (where I work) and ( I don't usually do this) this has had a lot of positive feedback from my colleagues and superiors. The programme is transformational where it builds participants to be more confident, be attentive and understand the many important attributes to being leader.

The best thing about the PFLP programme is that each participant has an assigned coach. The coaches and the teaching team are very experienced individuals where they basically will 'crack' you until you come out of that 'shell'.

I have grown greatly since February in terms of my personality and everyday engagement with friends, colleagues and any other person(s) I now come across in life. I know  how to understand others better and help out using tools that this programme has exposed me to".

Angela K. - August 2019.


The story of “Mary and Tui” is an example of the sort of experience that may be had by a participant undertaking PFLP.

Mary is a Deputy Director of a National Fisheries Agency. She has a degree in Marine Science and her Director is retiring in 2020. She would like the role, not least because she wishes to implement some changes in how her agency influences coastal fisheries practice. However, she also has some concerns. Will her other colleagues respect her as Director, not only because she has been a peer but also because she is a woman? Will they take her qualifications into full account? Does she have the confidence and leadership skills to compete against other applicants? Mary has learned the technical side of fisheries and while she respects her management team she feels she would like to do better. And how will she implement the fisheries priorities for her country when they really don’t have many resources?

Mary applies to join the programme. She discusses this with her Director and after hearing the objectives of the programme and the importance of his own role in supporting Mary, he agrees.

Pleased she is accepted on the programme Mary is offered a professional coach who has mentored other Pacific leaders. He skypes her two months before the first workshop and explains how the programme works and listens to her situation. He suggests she take a 360 degree assessment to better understand how her peers, Director and others see her leadership skills. She is reluctant at first but is convinced to try it and later accepts how useful this is. Mary is introduced to some readings and resources for the first workshop. What excites Mary is that as part of Leadership for Effectiveness workshop, Mary has an option to gain credits for two courses towards a Post Graduate Certificate at the University of Queensland – one of the top 15 Business Schools in the world.

Tui is a Fisheries Director, also accepted onto the programme. He flies to Nadi for the Leadership for Effectiveness workshop for 20 days and completes two courses. Inclusive Strategic Leadership in the Pacific and Leading People and Teams. He finds them relevant. The UQ Academics engage well in the Pacific context. Still, Tui experiences one course as less relevant than another and finds opportunities to input changes to help improve it. He particularly likes the useful tools and practical techniques provided by PFLP which he knows he can use the day he returns to work. He’s also motivated by a speaker from SPC’s Gender team who describes different ways of addressing gender issues in the Pacific fisheries workplace. Tui also gets to meet Alan, who is also his coach and they develop a Personal Development plan to use what he has learned and prepare to find a workplace attachment.

As Tui will soon be chairing some regional fisheries meetings he decides on an attachment with SPC as they have developed new ways of getting more participation in such meetings. As it’s a leadership programme, Tui is encouraged to initiate the attachment. Megan (PFLP’s Training Specialist) makes the arrangements for him. Alan coaches Tui a total of 15 times through the 3 components of the programme and he’s responded when he had a work crisis and didn’t know who to turn to.

Mary and Tui find they can use several techniques learned to help manage their teams, customised to their own situation. Mary has specific new challenges to deal with in reducing the runoff of agricultural waste into the coastal water while Tui   is concerned mostly by IUU fishing and creating a skilled, motivated and inclusive staff group.

Mary and Tui return to attend the Leadership for Change workshop, and are encouraged by a programme developed in Harvard Kennedy School but adapted to the Pacific context. They each learn different skills to help deal with stubborn barriers to change in their own contexts.

Using techniques learned, supported by a useful interactive tailored website, they each find they can engage with stakeholders more effectively and together develop new solutions. Mary and Tui are later interviewed about PFLP and their experiences. They hear that their input will help shape the programme the following year.


Application rounds:

Leadership for Effectiveness: The new application round for Leadership for Effectiveness workshop (27th January - 14th February 2020) closed on 25th October 2019.

Leadership for Change: The application round for 2019 workshop is now closed. Two other workshops will be run in 2021.

You can contact [email protected] for any further information.