The need to evaluate the economic and social contribution of the Victorian Seafood Industry to Victorian communities has been identified by the VicRAC (formally VicFRAB) as an urgent and high priority. Currently no such data exist, but the need is clear. Firstly, an evaluation is required to inform the Victorian Government of the likely impacts of resource management decisions on coastal communities. Second, an evaluation is necessary to provide information to the Victorian public about the benefits that flow from the professional fishing sector, beyond a total annual value calculated from beach prices.
FRDC also have identified a strong need for a coordinated approach to evaluate the Industry across the States and Territories, so that a national picture of the value of Australian Seafood Industry can be determined.
Recent FRDC-funded research in NSW, led by A/Prof Kate Barclay, to evaluate the social and economic value of coastal professional wild-catch fisheries, has provided a strong basis for developing this national framework, and the methods suitable for addressing the specific needs of the Victorian Industry.
We propose the Victorian social/economic evaluation study consist of a two-stage approach, in order to ensure the most appropriate methods are used, the outputs are relevant, and that the evaluation achieves a high level of industry support and participation.
Stage 1 consists of developing a fully-costed methodology for a Victorian evaluation which also could be scaled up for a national evaluation. This stage would also develop collaborative partnership with, and support from, the Victorian Industry sectors.
Stage 2 would consist of the Evaluation Study itself – data collection, analysis and dissemination – based on the outputs of Stage 1.
Stage 1 would run in January 2017 – March 2017. Stage 2 EOI would be submitted to VicRAC for consideration in March 2017.
This application seeks support for Stage 1.
The FRDC Victorian Research Advisory Committee identified the need for a research project to measure the multiple social and economic contributions of the professional fishing and aquaculture sectors as an urgent and high priority. FRDC and the Human Dimensions Research (HDR) subprogram also identified a strong need for a coordinated approach and framework to evaluate professional fisheries across the States and Territories in Australia.
As such, 2016-263 Social and Economic Evaluation of the Victorian Wild-catch and Aquaculture Industries – STAGE 1 was funded by the VicRAC in early 2017. The purpose of the project was to determine the appropriate approach to take for Victorian fisheries in collaboration with industry. This scoping project had two aims. The first was to develop engagement, collaborative partnerships and support from the Victorian wild-catch and aquaculture industry sectors, for a fully-funded 2-year FRDC project to measure the social and economic contribution of Victorian wild-catch and aquaculture industries to Victorian communities. This culminated in an industry workshop, which informed research design and dissemination, built support, and developed pathways to ensure participation from industry. The second aim was to develop a fully-costed methodology for a full FRDC application for a Victorian ‘contribution study’ to be submitted in 2017 that was appropriate for the Victorian context, in-line with the HDR framework, built on the methodologies used in NSW work FRDC projects 2014-301 and 2015-302, and identified an appropriate and experience team and their roles.This scoping project was undertaken in partnership by Seafood Industry Victoria (SIV) and University of Technology Sydney (UTS) in 2017.