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1 February 2017 Empirical Models of Fisheries Production: Conflating Technology with Incentives?
Matthew N. Reimer
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Abstract

Conventional empirical models of fisheries production inadequately capture the primary margins of behavior along which fishermen act, rendering them ineffective for ex ante policy evaluation. We estimate a conventional production model for a fishery undergoing a transition to rights-based management and show that ex ante production data alone arrives at misleading conclusions regarding post-rationalization production possibilities— even though the technologies available to fishermen before and after rationalization were effectively unchanged. Our results emphasize the difficulty of assessing the potential impacts of a policy change on the basis of ex ante data alone. Since such data are generated under a different incentive structure than the prospective system, a purely empirical approach imposed upon a flexible functional form is likely to reflect far more about the incentives under status-quo management than the actual technological possibilities under a new policy regime.

JEL Codes: D24, Q22.

© 2017 MRE Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved.
Matthew N. Reimer "Empirical Models of Fisheries Production: Conflating Technology with Incentives?," Marine Resource Economics 32(2), 169-190, (1 February 2017). https://doi.org/10.1086/690677
Received: 27 August 2015; Accepted: 1 August 2016; Published: 1 February 2017
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