Journal Article

Fisheries-management science: a framework for the implementation of fisheries-management systems

D. E. Lane and R. L. Stephenson

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 56, issue 6, pages 1059-1066
Published in print December 1999 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online December 1999 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI:
Fisheries-management science: a framework for the implementation of fisheries-management systems

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Management science, the scientific study of problem-solving, has developed a body of literature and methodologies over the past four decades on decision theory methods, evaluation of management and systems performance, and analysis of systems under uncertainty. These methods have been influential and applied successfully to many industrial decision-making and strategic-planning settings. Fisheries management has not yet embraced these innovations, which involve the “scientific method of problem-solving” and which offer considerable opportunity for improved fisheries decision-making. Fisheries science and management can be integrated with management science in what we term “fisheries-management science”. The broader framework allows management in the face of uncertainty and, at the spatial and temporal scales, is appropriate for the complexity of fisheries systems. This paper presents an implementation plan for fisheries-management science in a commercial fishery. The implementation plan is presented as a possible remedy for issues that have plagued fisheries management to date. It is argued that decision theory methodologies are needed to analyse the management problem context, including strategic planning and objectives setting, appropriate spatial and temporal scale definition, interdisciplinary systems modelling methods, the assessment and management of risk, and ongoing in-season decision-monitoring. The fisheries-management science problem-solving context also provides a basis for reshaping the central agency responsible for fisheries into a more action-orientated organization consisting of multidisciplinary teams acting in support of participative, real-time decision-making through enhanced industry and stakeholders' responsibility for resource sustainability. Fisheries institutions are often hindered by rigid, disciplinary organizational structures and decision-making processes that are unable to account, in a timely fashion, for the multiple and conflicting objectives and the inherent variability that characterize a fishery system. The fisheries-management science approach addresses these issues by focusing on the problem-orientated nature of fisheries management, by managing according to objectives, and by supporting a holistic view for stock conservation and resource sustainability.

Keywords: fisheries management; management science; systems analysis

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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