Accompagnamento al Lavoro | Seminari e Convegni

Scienze del Governo e dell'Amministrazione Accompagnamento al Lavoro | Seminari e Convegni

Understanding EU Fisheries Management Dynamics by Engaging Stakeholders through Online Group Model-Building

Erda Gercek, Monica Gambino and Loretta Malvarosa


The Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) has a challenging mandate to find the right policy mix to simultaneously achieve all three aspects of sustainability: economic, social, and environmental. But development and implementation of an effective and sustainable fisheries management policy has been a challenge all over the world. The evidence of this failure is found in the continuous decline in fish stocks. Faced with the difficulty in fulfilling this mandate, the European Commission has increasingly been embracing fisheries stakeholders’ involvement. Stakeholder involvement in policy development and implementation is important because it tries to bring the relevant interested parties together, understanding and paying attention to what is important to each and every stakeholder, identifying the individual and common issues. This process in turn can foster connections, trust, confidence, and buy-in, and commitment for the implementation of the policy. This research describes a group model-building (GMB) approach using system dynamic methodology as a participatory model building tool, enabling stakeholders to become deeply involved in the identification and modelling of the complex issues faced by the EU fisheries. Given the geographical diversity of the stakeholders, GMB was applied online, both synchronously and asynchronously, providing participants time to carefully reflect on key variables, their relationships, and the behaviour of the overall system. The study demonstrated the need and relevance of an adequate engagement of the stakeholders, with online stakeholder consultation proving an effective method of engagement. Hence, the study is very relevant for both scientists and managers. The GMB process meant the final model evolved significantly from the initial one offered, which pointed to active involvement in and progressive learning from the modelling process itself, as the methodology argues. Two quantitative stock-flow models using actual numbers were built not only to aid the GMB process but to depict how all three aspects of sustainability could actually be met with the right set of policies that consider feedback loops and inherent trade-offs.