Working Group on Economics (WGECON; outputs from 2020 meeting)
reportposted on 26.01.2021, 00:00 authored by ICESICES
The ICES Working Group on Economics (WGECON) was established to address the challenge of bringing fisheries economics into ICES science and advice, with the growing recognition that this can assist process understanding of uses of marine ecosystems, their drivers and responses to changes, and assessment and communication of trade-offs that include economic, social and ecological dimensions. The group has progressed in two complementary directions: (i) drafting a scientific manuscript reviewing current research and future needs for economic science and advice in ICES; (ii) discussing the information flow needed to provide trade-off analysis. In par-ticular, the group agrees that a clear distinction needs to be established in such analyses between economic impacts and welfare changes. A review of available economic data showed that a sig-nificant body of information exists in Europe and in the US to describe the economic status of commercial fisheries in different regions. A survey of the fisheries economics profession showed that more than 80% of the respondents would be interested in contributing to Integrated Ecosys-tem Assessments on a regional basis. WGECON has also actively sought to develop links with other ICES working groups and initiatives, and to the organisation of international conferences and meetings.Future WGECON work will continue to enhance the economic dimension to be an integral part of marine science and scientific advice regarding the use and conservation of marine resources. This is based on the still increasing demand for science and advice to address economic consid-erations, and the observation that ICES does only to very limited extent engage economists and address economic issues in many member countries in its existing work. WGECON members have agreed on the importance of integrating economics in ICES science generally, but have highlighted the importance of identifying and reviewing the specific problems that can be ad-dressed, as this leads to a more concrete discussion on the applied contributions of economic research. Also, the group has emphasized the use of demonstrators of the ways in which such problem identification and analysis of relevant economic research, methods, tools and data can be implemented to meet the problems. On this basis the group has pointed to the following fu-ture needs and ToRs for the continued WGECON: i) Build additional capacity for economic sci-ence in ICES, giving consideration to research and institutional needs in all ICES member coun-tries, as well as useful connections to international marine/ fisheries economics organisations such as International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade (IIFET), North American Asso-ciation of Fisheries Economists (NAAFE) and European Association of Fisheries Economists (EAFE); ii) Identify and report on economic data-related needs and priorities for short and longer-term economic data collection, access and analysis; and where possible propose systems to collect missing data; iii) Demonstrate the approaches, methods, tools and information flow needed to provide analysis of trade-offs relating to ecosystem-based management of fishing (EBFM); iv) Assess and report on economic aspects of commercial fishing and its management for selected regions in the ICES area; and v) Coordinate the provision of economic indicators and analysis as part of integrated socio-ecological evaluations in support of EBFM.
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