In May of 2010 a new management system based on harvest cooperatives called “sectors” was implemented in the U.S. Northeast Multispecies Groundfish Fishery. Sectors are self-organized, self-managed groups of fishermen that receive annual catch entitlements. We hypothesize that the success and longevity of these sectors is likely to depend, in part, on the relationships amongst the members including their degree of trust and ability to collaborate. The value of these relationships and the ability to cooperate is commonly referred to as social capital. Prior to the implementation of the new sector system, we conducted a survey to derive baseline measures of social capital for individual groundfish permit holders and sectors. We construct indices of bonding, bridging and linking social capital, information sharing, and trust. We explore correlations between these social capital indices, characteristic of the vessels in the sectors, and various measures of economic performance of sectors.
JEL Classification Codes: Q22