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The effect of restrictive policy instruments on Belgian fishing fleet dynamics

Hendrik Stouten (UGent) , Aimé Heene (UGent) , Xavier Gellynck (UGent) and Hans Polet
(2008) AQUATIC LIVING RESOURCES. 21(3). p.247-258
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Abstract
Even with the rapid changes in the level of complexity and the uncertainty of the environment in which Belgian sea fisheries operate, fisheries management in Belgium is still mainly based on restrictive policy instruments founded in the biological approach of fisheries management science. Since they will continue to play an important role, this paper evaluated changes in three restrictive policy instruments and their effect on future fleet performance and dynamics, i.e. maximum fishing days, total quota-restrictions and licences. These effects are tested through scenarios in a microeconomic simulation model, including sensitivity analysis. This study opts for a dynamic simulation model based on a microeconomic approach of fleet dynamics using system dynamics as a modelling technique (operational base: Vensim (R) DSS). The results indicated that changes in maximum fishing days and total quota resulted in higher fluctuations in fleet performance and dynamics compared to changes in licences. Furthermore, changes in maximum fishing days and total quota had a direct impact on fleet performance, though not always as expected, whereas licences only affected fleet performance indirectly since they only limit the entry of new vessels to the fleet and they can block the growth of successful sub fleets. The outcomes of this study are translated into practical recommendations for improving fisheries management. Firstly, policy makers need to be more aware of misperceptions of feedback. Secondly, the results proved that altering only one type of restrictive policy instrument at a time often fails to meet desired outcomes. Therefore, policy makers need to find a balance in combining policy instruments. Finally, this paper opens the discussion on the future value of restrictive policy instruments in the rapidly changing, complex and uncertain fisheries environment. It suggests rethinking their use from "preserving a status quo and social peace" toward a driving factor in "stimulating fleet dynamics".
Keywords
Fisheries management, Sensitivity simulation, System dynamics, Fleet performance, Fleet dynamics, RENEWABLE RESOURCES, FISHERIES-MANAGEMENT, Restrictive policy instruments, MISPERCEPTIONS, COMPLEXITY, DECISION-MAKING, FEEDBACK

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Chicago
Stouten, Hendrik, Aimé Heene, Xavier Gellynck, and Hans Polet. 2008. “The Effect of Restrictive Policy Instruments on Belgian Fishing Fleet Dynamics.” Aquatic Living Resources 21 (3): 247–258.
APA
Stouten, H., Heene, A., Gellynck, X., & Polet, H. (2008). The effect of restrictive policy instruments on Belgian fishing fleet dynamics. AQUATIC LIVING RESOURCES, 21(3), 247–258. Presented at the 18th Annual Conference of the European Association of Fisheries Economists (EAFE).
Vancouver
1.
Stouten H, Heene A, Gellynck X, Polet H. The effect of restrictive policy instruments on Belgian fishing fleet dynamics. AQUATIC LIVING RESOURCES. Les Ulis, France: EDP Sciences SA; 2008;21(3):247–58.
MLA
Stouten, Hendrik, Aimé Heene, Xavier Gellynck, et al. “The Effect of Restrictive Policy Instruments on Belgian Fishing Fleet Dynamics.” AQUATIC LIVING RESOURCES 21.3 (2008): 247–258. Print.
@article{669434,
  abstract     = {Even with the rapid changes in the level of complexity and the uncertainty of the environment in which Belgian sea fisheries operate, fisheries management in Belgium is still mainly based on restrictive policy instruments founded in the biological approach of fisheries management science. Since they will continue to play an important role, this paper evaluated changes in three restrictive policy instruments and their effect on future fleet performance and dynamics, i.e. maximum fishing days, total quota-restrictions and licences. These effects are tested through scenarios in a microeconomic simulation model, including sensitivity analysis. This study opts for a dynamic simulation model based on a microeconomic approach of fleet dynamics using system dynamics as a modelling technique (operational base: Vensim (R) DSS). The results indicated that changes in maximum fishing days and total quota resulted in higher fluctuations in fleet performance and dynamics compared to changes in licences. Furthermore, changes in maximum fishing days and total quota had a direct impact on fleet performance, though not always as expected, whereas licences only affected fleet performance indirectly since they only limit the entry of new vessels to the fleet and they can block the growth of successful sub fleets. The outcomes of this study are translated into practical recommendations for improving fisheries management. Firstly, policy makers need to be more aware of misperceptions of feedback. Secondly, the results proved that altering only one type of restrictive policy instrument at a time often fails to meet desired outcomes. Therefore, policy makers need to find a balance in combining policy instruments. Finally, this paper opens the discussion on the future value of restrictive policy instruments in the rapidly changing, complex and uncertain fisheries environment. It suggests rethinking their use from {\textacutedbl}preserving a status quo and social peace{\textacutedbl} toward a driving factor in {\textacutedbl}stimulating fleet dynamics{\textacutedbl}.},
  author       = {Stouten, Hendrik and Heene, Aim{\'e} and Gellynck, Xavier and Polet, Hans},
  issn         = {0990-7440},
  journal      = {AQUATIC LIVING RESOURCES},
  keyword      = {Fisheries management,Sensitivity simulation,System dynamics,Fleet performance,Fleet dynamics,RENEWABLE RESOURCES,FISHERIES-MANAGEMENT,Restrictive policy instruments,MISPERCEPTIONS,COMPLEXITY,DECISION-MAKING,FEEDBACK},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Reykjavik, Iceland},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {247--258},
  publisher    = {EDP Sciences SA},
  title        = {The effect of restrictive policy instruments on Belgian fishing fleet dynamics},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/alr:2008037},
  volume       = {21},
  year         = {2008},
}

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