Structural behavioral models for rights-based fisheries

Matthew N. Reimer, Joshua K. Abbott, Alan C. Haynie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Rights-based management is prevalent in many fisheries, yet conventional spatiotemporal models of fishing behavior do not reflect such institutional settings. We adapt random utility maximization (RUM) models of spatiotemporal fishing behavior to capture the general equilibrium dynamics of catch-share fisheries by incorporating endogenously determined equilibrium quota prices. We demonstrate how a structural estimation strategy is capable of recovering policy-invariant behavioral parameters and predicting out-of-sample counterfactual policies. We illustrate the utility of our structural modeling approach by evaluating the efficacy of “ecosystem-based” policies, such as spatial closures, in a catch-share-managed fishery. Simulation results reveal that such policies have the potential to distort price signals in the quota market and prevent quota prices from coordinating fishing behavior in an efficient manner. Ecosystem-based policies may thus fall short of their intended objectives when introduced into rights-based managed fisheries. Importantly, we demonstrate that such conclusions cannot easily be drawn from behavioral models that omit or approximate the general equilibrium dynamics of rights-based fisheries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101294
JournalResource and Energy Economics
StatePublished - May 2022


  • Discrete choice models
  • Fisheries
  • RUM model
  • Rights-based management
  • Structural econometrics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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