spring 2019
FSK-3005 Fisheries research and management - 10 ECTS

Last changed 09.01.2020

Application deadline

Applicants from Nordic countries: 1 December for the spring semester. Exchange students and Fulbright students: 1 October for the spring semester.

Type of course

This subject is an obligatory course of  the Master's programme in International Fisheries Management.

The course can also be taken as a singular course.

Admission requirements

Application code: 9371

Entrance requirements as for the M.Sc. programme in International Fisheries Management.

Course content

The course is based on three modules: one giving basic introduction to various scientific approaches to the study of fisheries and aquaculture, the second dealing with how to write a master thesis (research questions, methods, technical set-up, etc.) and the last demonstrating through the use of case studies, how a particular fishery or aquaculture operation can be analyzed and presented. The case studies will alternate over the years,  with a presentation of biological, economic and administrative aspects.

Objectives of the course

Students who successfully complete the course should:

  • Understand various scientific approaches to the study of fisheries and aquaculture
  • Learn and be able to demonstrate how to write a scientific paper
  • Have knowledge on how various fisheries are managed
  • Be able to evaluate and choose various management measures adapted to different types of fisheries and aquaculture operations
  • Have a general competence regarding the use of various fisheries and aquaculture management measures

Relevance in study program: This course constitutes a compulsory part of the Master's degree in International Fisheries Management. The objective of the course is to make the students familiar with the multidisciplinary approach to fisheries management through case studies, representing a variety of problems and challenges.

Language of instruction

The language of instruction and all syllabus material is English.

Teaching methods

Lectures and case studies, seminars with obligatory presentations by the students. The presentation includes a critical assessment of previous master thesis and the production of a poster related to a specific fishery of the students own choice.


One week home exam with focus on a particular fishery or management problem.

The grading scale is A-F, where A-E is passed, and F is failed.

Coursework requirements: 

The production of a poster on a selected fishery organized as group work (2-3 students per case). The poster and the critical assessment of previous master thesis have to be produced before entering the final exam.

A re-sit exam will be arranged in the next semester.


Recommended reading/syllabus

This course will offer a brief introduction to various scientific approaches and give the students the necessary tools to write a scientific paper and the master thesis. Furthermore this course will deal with three different fisheries, offering lectures in biology, economics and social science (fisheries administration).

Different approaches to fisheries and aquaculture science:

  • Okasha, S.: Philosophy of science. A very short introduction. Oxford University Press
  • Selected sections to be presented in Fronter

Research methods and technical presentation: Blaikie, N.: Designing Social Research. Polity Press. Selected chapters. The idea is to present a wide variety of management situations, where students should be familiar with different settings, different challenges and different management solutions. This year we have decided to use the following cases:

  • The Norwegian cod fisheries in the Barents Sea
  • The South African fisheries, with special focus on the allocation process
  • Salmon aquaculture in Chile

Case 1 Norway:

  • Chapter 6: From IVQs to I(T)Qs the gradual closing of the coastal commons, in Hersoug, B. (2005): The closing of the Norwegian commons.
  • Armstrong, C., A. Eide, O. Flaaten, K. Heen and I.W. Kaspersen: Rebuilding the Northeast Arctic Cod Fisheries - Economic and Social Issues. Arctic Review on Law and Politics, vol. 5, 1/2014 pp. 11-37. ISSN 1891-6252.
  • Nakken (1998): Past, present and future exploitation and management of marine resources in the Barents Sea and adjacent areas. Fisheries Research 37 (1998) 23-35.

Case 2 South Africa:

  • Molonney et al. (1998): Comparing the Benguela and Humboldt marine upwelling ecosystems with indicators derived from inter-calibrated models. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 62: 493e502 (2005).
  • Bedington et al. (2007): Current problems in the management of marine fisheries SCIENCE VOL 316 22 JUNE 2007.
  • Isaacs (2011): Individual transferable quotas, poverty alleviation and challenges for small-country fisheries policy in South Africa. MAST 2011, 10(2): 63-84 63
  • Hersoug (2002): Fishing in a sea of sharks. Eburon, Delft (the Netherlands).

Case 3 Chile:

  • Hersoug, B. (2011): Chiles salmon industry "from miracle to horror story?"
  • Bjørndahl and Aarland (1999): Salmon aquaculture in Chile. Aquaculture Economics & Management Volume 3, Issue 3, 1999.
  • Iizuka and Katz (2011): Natural resource industries, -tragedy of the commons- and the case of Chilean salmon farming.

General reading:

  • Fronter
  • Bené, Hersoug and Allison (2010): Not by Rent Alone: Analysing the Pro-Poor Functions of Small-Scale Fisheries in Developing Countries Development Policy Review Volume 28, Issue 3, pages 325-358, May 2010.
  • About the course
  • Campus: Tromsø |
  • ECTS: 10
  • Course code: FSK-3005