Whether you are a manager, a fisher, practitioner or any other fishery stakeholder, our manuals and supplemental guides will help chart your path to a more sustainable and profitable fishery. A secure fishing rights program—also known as rights-based management or a "catch share"—allocates access to a fishing area or a share of a fishery's total allowable catch to a group or an individual, allowing fishery participants to benefit from stewardship of fishery resources. 

Our Catch Share Design Manuals and supplementary resources highlight how good rights-based management design and accompanying tools can address existing challenges and maximize potential benefits. Most importantly, these tools are not prescriptive; rather they offer a series of questions whose answers help guide and inform the catch share design process.

Design Manuals

Catch Share Design Manual, Volume 1: A Guide for Managers and Fishermen

The Catch Share Design Manual is the most comprehensive overview of catch share design, drawing on hundreds of fisheries in more than 30 countries and the expertise of more than 60 fishery experts from around the world. Through a series of questions, it provides a step-by-step roadmap for designing a customized catch share program to meet your fishery’s goals.

Catch Share Design Manual, Volume 2: Cooperative Catch Shares

Nobel Laureate Elinor Ostrom popularized the understanding that resource users can, and under right conditions will, engage in co-management of their resources. The Cooperative Catch Shares volume discusses this notion for fisheries and provides important design guidance for managers and fishermen.

Catch Share Design Manual, Volume 3: Territorial Use Rights for Fishing

TURFs date back thousands of years and numerous studies highlight their effectiveness for managing nearshore fisheries. Recent innovations in TURF design, including approaches for scaling management across a broad area, are expanding their appeal and applicability. The TURF volume builds upon this growing experience, offering clear guidance for customized design. 

Supplemental Guides

Science-Based Management of Data-Limited Fisheries: A Supplement to the Catch Share Design Manual

The majority of fisheries worldwide lack sufficient data to conduct industry-standard stock assessments and a recent Science paper shows these fisheries are at serious risk. Due to this lack of data, more than 10,000 fisheries worldwide have been left out of recent advances in effective management. This guide outlines an approach for science-based management of fisheries, even in the absence of good data.

Transferable Effort Shares: A Supplement to the Catch Share Design Manual

Transferable effort share programs are a type of rights-based management that share many key attributes of catch shares. While these programs don't provide all the benefits of catch shares, they are often used when fisheries lack key data and may be a useful stepping stone towards catch shares. Before ruling out catch shares due to data constraints, see our guide on data-limited fisheries (see above).

Eliminating Discards

The practice of discarding—or returning a portion of the catch, dead or alive, to the ocean before offloading—has been a wasteful issue in fisheries for decades. As such, discarding is a practice that many fishermen, fishery managers and environmental groups would like to avoid. This guide can help fishery stakeholders align incentives to reduce and potentially eliminate discards through considerations in the design of a secure fishing rights program.

Designing and Implementing Electronic Monitoring Systems for Fisheries

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Interest in the development of Electronic Monitoring (EM) programs for monitoring fisheries has been increasing rapidly over the last decade, resulting in some successful (and some unsuccessful) full scale implementations. This guide identifies 9 essential ‘elements of success’ from 20 EM case studies, a study of the literature, and interviews with key stakeholders, to provide a practical guide for the implementation of EM programs in fisheries around the world.

Advancing Global Implementation of Electronic Methods for Fishery Monitoring and Enforcement

This guide is intended to help fishermen, fishery scientists, fishery managers, seafood buyers, technologists, data scientists and other stakeholders to evaluate opportunities and approaches for Electronic Monitoring (EM) application and to identify and overcome barriers to successful scaling.

En Español

Manual de Diseño de Manejo Compartido por Cuotas

Es una guía desarrollada exclusivamente por EDF que provee información especializada de diseño para programas de Manejo Compartido por Cuotas. Basado en la experiencia de alrededor de 30 expertos pesqueros de todo el mundo, con la finalidad de facilitar a cualquier persona interesada en el tema, un amplio panorama sobre las distintas opciones de un programa de cuotas y sobre cómo éstas pueden ser adaptadas a una gran variedad de pesquerías.