"Adoption of sustainable fishing practices could save the Nile perch, lift incomes, and preserve livelihoods among Uganda’s poor. When Henry Kityo got into the fishing business eight years ago, his boat reliably pulled 40 kilograms of Nile perch daily from the fertile waters of Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake. Now he’s lucky if his crews bring in half as much. Kityo faults competitors who harvest immature fish, a practice that is decimating the Nile perch population. Smaller catches have driven one-third of the commercial processors out of business in the last year, imperiled the livelihoods of 200,000 fishermen, and jeopardized the daily sustenance of millions of Ugandan families. “We want to stop illegal fishing,” says Kityo, 33. “But we don’t know how.” Michael Mugabira has some ideas. As a researcher affiliated with the Uganda Management Institute, Mugabira conducted a recent study of the fisheries sector with support from TrustAfrica’s Investment Climate and Business Environment Research Fund. He initially set out to gain a better understanding of the stark income inequalities between processors, who had been thriving, and fishermen, who faced acute poverty. But the data pointed to some unexpected conclusions. “If you want to improve conditions among fishing communities,” Mugabira says, “it’s better to work on sustainable practices than to focus on income disparities.”