An expectancy theory analysis of catch shares: Identifying outcomes, preferences, and potential co-management changes in New England groundfish management

William D Whitmore, University of Rhode Island

Abstract

Catch shares have been implemented through a variety of limited access privilege programs, including individual transferable quotas (ITQs) and co-operatives. The New England Fishery Management Council recently approved 19 fishing cooperatives, referred to as sectors, in Amendment 16 to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan. Despite requests by fishing industry members to consider an ITQ program in Amendment 16, a referendum requirement in the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and time constraints for implementing Amendment 16 were cited as reasons ITQs were not considered for Amendment 16. ^ A mail survey was used to compare different outcomes fishermen and fishery managers anticipate occurring from sectors and ITQs. Expectancy theory was used to identify which management method fishermen and managers preferred: continued fishing under the current days-at-sea management system (DAS), sectors, or ITQs. In addition, survey respondents identified how the use of catch shares may change perceptions of the co-management structure of the New England Fishery Management Council process. Qualitative data was gathered from public meetings to supplement survey results. ^ The findings indicated that fishermen and managers see little difference between the expected outcomes from sectors and ITQs. While managers suggested that fishermen and fishing communities may be slightly better off under sectors than under ITQs, more managers preferred ITQs over sectors and the current DAS management system. Most fishermen believed that catch shares would not benefit themselves or their communities, but also preferred ITQs over sectors and days-at sea management. Fishery managers did not anticipate catch shares altering the co-management structure of the Council, while fishermen predicted that catch shares would further decentralize management. ^

Subject Area

Natural Resource Management|Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Recommended Citation

William D Whitmore, "An expectancy theory analysis of catch shares: Identifying outcomes, preferences, and potential co-management changes in New England groundfish management" (2010). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI3430344.
http://digitalcommons.uri.edu/dissertations/AAI3430344

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