Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management: Perspectives Of Fishery Management Councils And Stakeholders In The New England And Mid-Atlantic Regions
The purpose of the dissertation research was to improve understanding of factors contributing to or preventing progress on ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) implementation for the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) and the New England Fishery Management Council (NEFMC), focusing on Council member and stakeholder beliefs, attitudes, and understanding. The Coorientation Model and the Planning Table were used to guide inquiry into the research objectives. The Coorientation Model was used to measure the degree of understanding between Council members and stakeholders. The concept of the Planning Table addressed whose interests were voiced, acknowledged, and incorporated into planning decisions. Council meetings were observed and 66 individuals were interviewed, including Council members, Council staff members, and Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) members in the New England (NE) and Mid-Atlantic (MA) regions, about EBFM. Additionally, more than 5,600 surveys were sent to commercial fishermen, recreational anglers, non-governmental organization leaders, SSC members and MAFMC and NEFMC members in the NE and MA regions about EBFM and over 1,000 responses were received. Neither low agreement nor low understanding between Council members and stakeholders appeared to be a barrier to NEFMC or MAFMC transition to EBFM. Council members and stakeholders responded that there are needs for social science information for EBFM and that although Council members and stakeholders perceive major barriers to EBFM, Council members and stakeholders do not perceive that these challenges are insurmountable. The study highlights specific barriers, social science needs, time lines and recommendations that MAFMC and NEFMC decision makers could focus on to facilitate the transition from single species fisheries management to EBFM. Specifically, decision makers and stakeholders recommend the development of a pilot plan for EBFM. Overall, managers and stakeholders in both the NE and MA regions generally agreed that EBFM is a holistic approach to fisheries management which includes biological, environmental, and human factors, and that the Councils should gradually transition to a management plan that reflects EBFM.
ecosystem-based fisheries management; ecosystem-based management; human dimensions
Clark, Christopher WKnuth, Barbara A
Eisner, Thomas; Sullivan, Patrick J; McComas, Katherine Anne; Wilson, Arthur L.
Ph.D. of Natural Resources
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis