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Avoiding Surprises: understanding the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on the decision making behaviors of fishers and how this affects the assessment and management of commercially important fish species in the Gulf of Mexico using an agent-bas

Implementing Organization

Nova Southeastern University (NSU) Oceanographic Center


DWH Project Funding


Known Leveraged Funding


Funding Organization

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI)

Funding Program

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative GoMRI Grant Program


Project Category


Project Actions

Public Health Research

Targeted Resources

Human and/or Institutional Capacity

Project Description

The National Marine Fisheries Service relies heavily on fish catch and fishing effort data from the fishing industry to assess the status of commercially important fish stocks in the Gulf of Mexico. The effect of the DWH oil spill closures on fish catch and effort is not well understood, making it difficult to use the 2010 year of data as a proxy for trends in abundance. To improve our understanding of these dynamics, this project will develop a spatially explicit bioeconomic model of some the most important commercial fishery species and the fleets that harvest them in the Gulf of Mexico. This project will expand an already-developed spatially explicit model for the West Florida shelf to the entire US shelf of the Gulf of Mexico, and will include more species and more fleets. It will also be modified to incorporate the direct effect of oil pollution on fish and shrimp survival and recruitment.


Steven Saul
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