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Framework for the evaluation of management strategies

The complex nature of fishery systems and the interactions between management, exploitation, environment and biology mean that it is not always possible to foresee the response to a given management action. It has been proposed to use a computer simulation framework that will allow the performance of management strategies, based on current and improved biological knowledge and management procedures, to be evaluated. New strategies will be proposed that consider the four elements: definition of management targets, assessment of stock relative to targets, recovery plans to move targets and stable management regimes.

The objectives of the project are:
1) to develop a simulation framework to evaluate management strategies consistent with the precautionary approach, while maintaining the viability of the fishing industry. This will enable the provision of advice to managers on the response of fish stocks to exploitation and management
2) to develop an understanding of the impact of processes related to environmental fluctuations, complex stock dynamics and fisheries interactions on management
2) to quantify the benefits of including such processes in current stock assessment/management procedures and where appropriate, develop alternative assessment/management strategies
3) to conduct a comparison of management strategies across life history strategies, assessment and management bodies.

1. Quantify the benefits of a variety of management strategies in terms of yield and
probability of exceeding sustainable limits.
2. Develop alternative assessment/management strategies where appropriate.
3. Compare management strategies of ICES and ICCAT.
4. Contrast the responses of a variety of stocks (from data-rich to data-poor, from tropical to temperate species and from pelagic to demersal fish) to exploitation.
5. Provide flexible free software that can be used by fish biologists to address a wide range of stocks and management questions.
6. Review the relevant biological and bioeconomic models used in the formulation of
fisheries advice.
FEMS will provide software and methodology that will be used by other current EU
projects (e.g. PKFM, EASE, Bemmfish and BASER) to evaluate the consequences of
improving our understanding of fishery systems.


Scientist responsible for the project

Pakefield Road
NR33 0HT Lowestoft
United Kingdom (The) - GB

Phone: +44 1502 524257
Fax: +44 1502 524569


Project ID QLRT-2001-01824
Organisation The Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science
Area 5.1.2
Start date 01 January 2003
Duration (months) 36
Total cost 757 058 €
Total EC contribution   368 178 €
Status Ongoing

The partners

  • International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, Denmark - DK
  • University of Miami, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, United States (The) - US

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