Fine-scale Dynamics of Human Adaptation in Coupled Natural and Social Systems: An Integrated Computational Approach Applied to Three Fisheries


James Wilson, PI.; James Acheson, Yong Chen, Teresa Johnson
Robert Steneck and Liying Yan, Co-PIs, School of Marine Sciences, University of Maine

    The purpose of this project is to gain a better understanding of the way competitive interactions among individual fishermen lead to the emergence of private incentives and informal social arrangements that are (or are not) consistent with conservation of the resource. These informal arrangements and incentives are important because they help us understand the extent to which private interests might reinforce or impair on-going resource management and, consequently, the sustainability of coupled human and natural systems. The broad hypothesis driving the study is that the informal social structure that emerges from competitive interactions among fishermen reflects the particular circumstances of the natural system. In some cases, successful competition requires secretive non-cooperative behavior; in others, cooperation tends to yield better competitive results. These different outcomes have different, and not always obvious, impacts on the feasibility and effectiveness of resource management.

Project Summary

The following references provide background on the project:

Wilson Yan Wilson, 2007
Wilson Matching 2006
Scientists comments on Amend 16 20 Jan 10
Self organizing with costly info Wilson and Yan