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Parametric Management: An Ecological-Social Approach

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Wilson, James; Dickie, Lloyd M.
Date: 1995
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/4965
Sector: Fisheries
Subject(s): fisheries
Abstract: "The immediate causes of over fishing arc usually ascribed to the harvesting of too many fish to allow adequate spawning, recruitment, and sustainability. We argue that the actions that lead to over fishing are most probably to be found in the broader parametric effects of fishing on the whole biotic and environmental system. Fishing activity leads to a degradation of the biotic or physical environment of desirable species, upsetting their feeding patterns and disrupting normal life cycle sequences. These reduced opportunities for growth, reproduction and survival alter the capacity of the whole system to maintain the organization of energy flows on which the fishery depends. However, the fundamental cause of over fishing lies in social institutions that either cannot conceive the complex biological interactions, or have insufficient authority to control the inputs. From a management perspective, this changed view of the over fishing problem suggests: (1) a shift to rules designed to address the parametric effects of fishing rather than the species-specific effort controls of traditional management. and (2) creation of a multi-level governance system (of basic federalist structure) in order to match the scales and minimize the potentially large transaction costs of system wide governance. Additionally, the difficult problem posed by uncertainty - our limited ability to tie particular restrictions to particular outcomes - means that hierarchical governance processes are needed to develop the basic requirements of credibility, incentive alignment and individual assurances."

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