Integrating social and ecological research on the impacts of offshore wind farms in North America

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This chapter discusses lessons learned from a socio-ecological study on the impacts of the first offshore wind farm in North America. The authors reflect on the combination of ecological data from demersal fish trawl and lobster surveys and qualitative social science data from interviews with commercial and recreational fishermen. They encountered several challenges in integrating the different research strands, arising from the temporal and spatial ranges of data, mismatch in focal fish species, and research framing. Despite these challenges, an integrated approach led to more comprehensive capture of impacts and guidance on how to design better biological studies. Early stage collaboration during research design, aligned goals, and comprehensive planning are all key to more integrated data collection and analysis within interdisciplinary studies of marine and fisheries domains.

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Researching People and the Sea: Methodologies and Traditions