FRAM Division, NW Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries and the IDEO Corporation with funding from the Moore Foundation
In Catch Shares and many other Fisheries Management Programs, timely and accurate data underlie many individual fishermen’s and management decisions, as well as scientific analysis of the consequences of those decisions. The FRAM Division (NWFSC) maintains both fishery dependent and fishery-independent data for the West Coast Groundfish Fishery and is working to make these data as useful and as timely as possible. We joined forces with the IDEO Corporation to evaluate user needs and ways to improve data management and delivery. We identified four areas for short and long-term changes: 1) expedite delivery of observer data; 2) automate a system for matching catch and discard data; 3) develop a data warehouse or library; and 4) delivering data for use by industry, NGO, scientific and other partners. We have already made substantive progress in delivering observer (discard) data to other systems with greater speed and accuracy and currently working to sequentially address other issues. Our ultimate goal, with each incremental step, is to provide the information that can increase the value of the fishery while improving management efforts.