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