Marine Institute Home to new OCI Industrial Research Chair For Fish Stock Assess

Marine Institute Home to new OCI Industrial Research Chair For Fish Stock Assessment

At an event on August 24, 2017, Noel Cadigan was appointed as the Ocean Choice International Research Chair in Stock Assessment and Sustainable Harvest Advice for Northwest Atlantic Fisheries at the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland.

Over a five-year period, Ocean Choice International and InnovateNL will each contribute $500,000. Additional funding will be leveraged against the Chair through the Ocean Frontier Institute (OFI) and the Marine Institute while the Robert and Edith Skinner Wildlife Management Fund at the Fisheries and Marine Institute will provide $500,000 to support the work of the chair.  The funding will also assist in hiring two junior chairs in fish stock assessment.

The goal of the Chair is to further the state-of-the-art and current practice in fish stock assessment  and focus on sustainability objectives and requirements for Northwest Atlantic Fisheries and specifically those on the Grand Banks, NL including but not limited to American Plaice, Yellowtail flounder, Greenland Halibut and redfish.  Research has already started with progress on all of these stocks.

“Our team and research will develop and implement an integrated state-space stock assessment model, with a more holistic modelling of productivity processes such as reproduction, growth and mortality, and how they can vary over time in response to ecosystem changes and the impacts on this on management reference points,” explains Dr. Cadigan.

As research Chair, Dr. Cadigan will also train a number of master’s and doctoral students, expanding the province’s capacity and expertise to conduct and analyze assessment data and provide advice on stock sustainability. This will also help address a critical shortage of skilled fishery stock assessment scientists in Canada and internationally.

“I’m looking forward to working with OCI, the fishing industry and all of our supporters to advance our understanding of our fish stocks and provide the most precise harvest advice possible,” said Dr. Cadigan.