Best practice guidelines for Australian fisheries management agencies

Project Number:



CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere Hobart

Principal Investigator:

Alistair Hobday

Project Status:


FRDC Expenditure:





There is a need for greater efficiency in government while reducing red and green tape, simplifying regulation and pursuing sustainable and profitable fisheries. In doing so, fisheries management also aims to gain and maintain the trust and confidence of fishery stakeholders and the general public by ensuring management is a transparent and participatory process. The current operating environment for fisheries and fishing businesses involves a range of practices and policies applied by a range of regulators with lack of consistency at whole of government level and among jurisdictions considerable duplication in process. There would be considerable benefits to reducing this complexity by adopting nationally agreed standards for fisheries management. While this is clearly a task for government, a strategic research project could assist by reviewing existing international standards and domestic arrangements, and by laying the groundwork for a national debate about consistent and agreed fisheries management standards that would reduce costs for industry, simplify the task for fishery regulators, while simultaneously meeting public expectations for transparent processes and good fisheries management.


1. Review existing and emerging standards for fisheries management

2. Benchmark current management practices – regulatory processes, policies, guidelines and standards – across all Australian fishery management jurisdictions

3. Identify options for a national set of auditable standards for fisheries management in Australia