Economic Incentives and Global Fisheries Sustainability

Posted: 19 Oct 2010

See all articles by Christopher Costello

Christopher Costello

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Donald Bren School of Environmental Science & Management

John Lynham

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Department of Economics

Sarah Lester

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB)

Steven D. Gaines

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB)

Date Written: October 2010

Abstract

Widespread global collapses of fisheries corroborate decades-old predictions by economists, made long before large-scale industrialization of the world's fisheries, that open access would have deleterious ecological and economic effects on fishery resources. Incentive-based alternatives (collectively called catch shares) have been shown to generate pecuniary benefits, but little empirical evidence exists for, or against, a link to global fisheries sustainability. We report and expand on an analysis of >11,000 fisheries worldwide, in which we investigated the causes of fisheries collapse from 1950 to 2003. Using a program evaluation design, we found that catch shares prevent and, in some specifications, reverse fisheries collapse. Subsequent scientific studies reinforce and challenge these findings, suggesting fruitful avenues for future research linking incentive-based resource management to sustainability.

Suggested Citation

Costello, Christopher and Lynham, John and Lester, Sarah and Gaines, Steven D., Economic Incentives and Global Fisheries Sustainability (October 2010). Annual Review of Resource Economics, Vol. 2, Issue 1, pp. 299-318, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1694342 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev.resource.012809.103923

Christopher Costello (Contact Author)

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Donald Bren School of Environmental Science & Management ( email )

4670 Physical Sciences North
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-5131
United States
(805) 893-5802 (Phone)
(805) 893-7612 (Fax)

John Lynham

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Department of Economics ( email )

2127 North Hall
Santa Barbara, CA 93106
United States

Sarah Lester

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) ( email )

Santa Barbara, CA 93106
United States

Steven D. Gaines

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) ( email )

Santa Barbara, CA 93106
United States

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