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Project K.1.a - POSEIDON project

01 Jul 2019 - 31 Dec 2020

Program(s) in charge: Stock Assessment Program
Build and evaluate an agent-based, adaptive fishing fleet model as an analytic tool to support management
  • POSEIDON is a coupled human-ecological model that combines an agent-based, adaptive fishing fleet model with existing fishery models or simple biological data, to simulate vessel behavior and fishery outcomes based on policies, market influences, and environmental factors.
  • POSEIDON provides a powerful platform for policy evaluation and decision support, with a strong focus on the spatial and human dimensions of fisheries management.
  • POSEIDON was originally developed by a multidisciplinary team from the University of Oxford, Ocean Conservancy, George Mason University, the University of California, Santa Barbara, and Arizona State University, as part of an effort to advance innovation in fisheries management.
  • The model has been calibrated and validated to the U.S. West Coast groundfish fishery. It is now being adapted to explore MSC certification for Indonesia’s deep-water snapper fishery (in partnership with The Nature Conservancy, Indonesia).
Relevance for management
The model will be used to explore timely research questions, including FAD management, understanding the spatial dynamics of the fishery, as well as some of the social and economic issues which effect management.
36 months (end year 2024)
Workplan and status
  • A post-doctoral researcher will be based at the IATTC’s office in La Jolla, and will be charged with 1) scoping model application and designing a use cases that are supportive of IATTC policy evaluation processes, 2) understanding and accessing relevant datasets from IATTC, and 3) conducting statistical analyses of data to support model development.
  • This researcher will work closely with the modeling team based at the University of Oxford and Ocean Conservancy to drive model design, calibration and validation of the tool and its outputs, as well as evaluation of model results.
External collaborators
  • University of Oxford
  • Ocean Conservancy
  • A computer algorithm with which to run simulations to explore management options.
  • A project report and publications in peer-reviewed journals.
Updated date: 01 Mar 2022
Progress summary for the reporting period
Following the developing of an initial version of the POSEIDON operating model, the POSEIDON team developed a joint research plan in 2021 to continue developing the simulation tool in support of IATTC priorities. Following that plan, the POSEIDON model was expanded to include several feature expansions and updates, as follows. To represent a complete picture of the purse seine fishery, the POSEIDON team revised the fleet behavioral model to incorporate dolphin-setting vessels and improving the realism of unassociated sets in the simulation. They also augmented the model with an age-structured population dynamics model for Yellowfin, Bigeye and Skipjack tuna. In consultation with key international FAD researchers, changes were implemented to improve FAD aggregation dynamics. Further, an additional module was added to the model to represent value chain dynamics, such that the model can support evaluation of economic impacts of changes in the fishery. Finally, a joint diagnostics plan was developed to outline the standards that the tool must meet to match the IATTC’s standard of accuracy and scientific rigor. The team is in the process of fitting (calibrating) the revised model to data from the fishery and implementing the diagnostic plan.