UW Aquatic & Fishery Sciences Quantitative Seminar
Associate Professor, UW, School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences
Identifying Effective Fishery Development Strategies: Evidence from the Fishery Performance Indicators
We apply a dataset of 112 case studies scored with the Fishery Performance Indicators—a rapid assessment instrument for measuring the ecological, economic and community performance of fisheries—to explore which management systems are associated with comprehensive notions of success. Our analysis shows relationships among rights-based management and ecological and socioeconomic outcomes are more nuanced than has been argued in the literature. Positive correlations between rights-based systems and ecological and economic outcomes appear only when there are supporting investments in the post-harvest sector. The policy message is clear: aid agencies and foundations should seek to invest in infrastructure in conjunction with the formation of access and harvest rights. On its own, infrastructure can exacerbate existing conditions that promote unsustainable harvest by providing market access and facilitating a labor influx. But rights alone are unable to generate better value in the post-harvest sector and may thus have a limited role in supporting desirable ecological, economic, and social outcomes for communities. Together, the infrastructure converts rights to incentives to protect the resource and generate profits that support the community.