National Guidelines to Develop Fishery Harvest Strategies
Sloan, S and Smith, T and Gardner, C and Crosthwaite, K and Triantafillos, L and Jeffriess, B and Kimber, N, National Guidelines to Develop Fishery Harvest Strategies, National Guidelines to Develop Fishery Harvest Strategies, Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, Adelaide South Australia, Project No. 2010/061 (2014) [Government or Industry Research]
Harvest strategies offer an effective fisheries management tool to integrate the ecological, social and
economic dimensions of fisheries management into a single framework for fisheries management
decision making. As evidenced by their wide use internationally and throughout Australian fisheries
management jurisdictions, harvest strategies represent a best-practice approach to fisheries
management decision making (FAO 2011; Smith et al. 2013; McIlgorm 2013).
The objectives for this project were to:
1. Undertake a review and analysis of the present situation of harvest strategies in
Commonwealth and State-managed fisheries.
2. Develop a common definition for nationally consistent harvest strategies.
3. Develop an agreed set of over-arching principles for Harvest Strategies across Australia
The National Guidelines to Develop Fishery Harvest Strategies (the National Guidelines), outlined in
this report, provide a national framework to support a consistent and more harmonised approach to
harvest strategy development across Australian fisheries jurisdictions.
The National Guidelines aim to provide practical technical assistance to all government fisheries
management agencies in Australia (State, Territory and Commonwealth) to develop fishery-specific
harvest strategies and to facilitate a consistent and more harmonised approach across fisheries
throughout Australia. The National Guidelines aim to help inform policy makers involved in the
development of over-arching harvest strategy policies and assist in ensuring a national best-practice
approach to the development of such policies. A national approach to harvest strategy development
will enable common challenges to be addressed in a consistent and coordinated manner, thereby
avoiding unnecessary duplication of effort and resources, and ensuring more targeted investment in
ways to address common challenges.
A working group was established to develop the National Guidelines, including a national cross
section of fisheries management, policy, science and fishing industry expertise presently involved in
harvest strategy development in Australia. A national technical stakeholder workshop was held in the
early phase of the project to shape the approach to development of the National Guidelines.
A national qualitative audit was undertaken to evaluate the extent to which harvest strategies are
being applied across Australian fisheries management jurisdictions. This audit identified that whilst
harvest strategies are used widely in Australian fisheries their application is highly inconsistent, as is
the use of terminology and language. The audit identified a need to more adequately integrate the
economic and social aspects of fisheries management into harvest strategy development (particularly
in relation to the use of social and economic performance indicators, target reference points and
decision rules) to promote management of fisheries to broader ESD standards.