Since 2005, GMRI has engaged in a growing program of social science research to deepen the knowledge base on critical issues affecting the Gulf of Maine fishing community and to enable more effective decision-making.
Socioeconomic Impacts of Catch Share Programs
GMRI's Community team is currently collaborating on several projects with the Social Science Branch of the National Marine Fisheries Services Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. Our involvement in these projects largely involves reaching out to the fishing industry in New England to solicit feedback on a newly devised method of measuring the socioeconomic impacts of shifting toward output-based catch share (or sector) programs and documenting socioeconomic impacts resulting from implementation of these programs.
Socioeconomic Indicators for Catch Share Programs in New England
To better understand how this new paradigm affects fishery stakeholders in the long term, the Northeast Fisheries Science Center has developed a participatory process to define social and economic performance measures for such programs. The goal of this initiative was to identify performance measures and associated indicators that are relevant not only in academic terms but to those who may be experiencing changes on the ground. This executive summaryprovides an overview of GMRI's involvement in this project. Please contact GMRI for a copy of the full report.
Groundfish Crew Rapid Assessment
The first year of sector management held great uncertainty for groundfish fishermen, and many industry members are concerned about the impact on large vs. small vessels, different ports, captains vs. crew and other sub-groups. Little is known or documented about the impacts of the new management system on vessel crew, or even how to effectively reach crewmen to measure these impacts. This report focused on obtaining a baseline snapshot of crew conditions; identified potential impacts from the groundfish regulations; and assessed how best to contact, measure, and track changes in the vessel crew population in the future. Read the report.
A Survey of Social Capital and Attitudes toward Management in the New England Groundfish Fishery
As the New England groundfish fishery transitions to sectors, substantial management responsibilities will shift to groups of fishermen. The success of individual sectors is likely to depend on the attitudes and capabilities of the members that join them, the skills and commitment of sector leaders, and on the strength of the relationships between members including their degree of trust and ability to work together. The value of these relationships and ability to work collaboratively is commonly referred to as social capital. This research describes the social capital and attitudes toward management in groundfish industry. Read the report.
Continued Lobster Fishery Social Science Research
GMRI is deepening the analysis of both fishery resource economics and effectiveness of lobster fishing efforts as well as carrying out supply chain analysis related to the lobster industry. This research aims to provide the industry with intelligence that can increase its viability and enable informed decisions about how and where the product should enter the marketplace. Learn more.