2004/08 statement of intent fisheries research services
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Hoki and Middle Depths Fisheries
Inshore Finfish and Freshwater Eel Fisheries
Stock Assessment Methods
Research Data Management
Background / Scope
Under the various research outputs, the Minister of Fisheries purchases advice on specific research needs to support decision-making in relation to the sustainable utilisation of fisheries.
The management of fisheries to produce the goal of sustainable utilisation is based upon scientific evaluation of:
sustainable yield from fisheries resources
the effects of fishing on the aquatic environment, including on the viability of associated or dependent species and on biological diversity
alternative strategies for achieving the desired level of yield while avoiding, remedying, or mitigating adverse effects of fishing on the aquatic environment
analysis of relevant cultural, economic, and social factors that may need to be included in the management decision process
the specific measures needed to implement the preferred strategy
The goal of fisheries research is to provide the information required to ensure the sustainable utilisation of New Zealand’s fisheries resources. The research required by the Minister of Fisheries falls into six key research areas each of which has its own specific goal. These research areas and associated goals are:
fisheries resources - to provide the information on sustainable yields and stock status required for the sustainable utilisation of New Zealand's fisheries resources
harvest levels - to determine the nature and extent of commercial and recreational catch, Maori customary take, and illegal catch and fishery induced mortality
aquaculture and enhancement research - to provide information to ensure that aquaculture and enhancement activities are sustainable and to determine the effects on wild fisheries and the aquatic environment
aquatic environment research - to determine the nature and extent of the impacts of fishing on the aquatic environment and to assess the impact of diseases and exotic organisms on the sustainability of New Zealand's fishery resources
cultural, economic, and social research - to provide information on cultural, economic, and social factors that may need to be considered in the management decision making process to enable people to provide for their social, economic, and cultural well-being
traditional and customary research - to provide information on the traditional and customary factors that may need to be considered in the management decision making process to enable the Minister to discharge her/his obligations to tangata whenua under the Deed of Settlement and the Treaty of Waitangi (Fisheries Claims) Settlement Act to enable Maori to provide for their traditional and customary well-being
Most fisheries research contracted by the Ministry of Fisheries is fully contestable. Contracts are awarded following competitive tendering for projects. The 2004/05 research projects will be tendered in separate phases. The first tender round will commence in December 2003 for which tenders will close in March 2004. The remaining research projects will be tendered in 2004.
Organisations who wish to be considered as providers of research services have been invited to register their interest. Respondent organisations have been assessed on the basis of information supplied. Only those organisations that, in the opinion of the Ministry, qualify as being suitably experienced providers of research services will be invited to tender for research work. The registration of interest process is ongoing throughout the year.
Contracts will be awarded to the tenderer who, in the opinion of the Ministry, is best able to provide the required service in the most cost-effective manner. The tender and proposal documents included with the Research Requirements document provide details of the tender evaluation process and criteria as well as General and Special Conditions of Contract.
The timetable for the first phase of the tender round for 2004/05 research projects is as follows:
Tenders invited from pre-qualified tenderes
Tender evaluation and pre-award negotiations complete
THE RESEARCH PLANNING PROCESS
The research planning process described here relates specifically to research required by the Minister of Fisheries, and contracted by the Ministry of Fisheries, to support the Minister’s role in decision making to ensure the sustainable utilisation of New Zealand’s fisheries. This process, organised and convened by the Ministry of Fisheries, has been composed of three main sub-processes or levels as follows:
Ministry of Fisheries Regional Liaison Networks
The Ministry’s Fisheries Managers met with stakeholders during 2003 through the regional liaison networks to determine the research needs and requirements of the stakeholder organisations at the regional level. This information was then fed into the later stages of the research planning process, i.e. into the national Research Planning Group meetings as described below.
Research Planning Groups
The Research Planning Groups (RPGs), established in 1996, met again during 2003. The membership of the RPGs is composed of Ministry of Fisheries staff, stakeholder representatives, other government departments, and science providers.
The purpose of the RPGs is to discuss, evaluate, and recommend proposed future research activity within the specific research area covered by the RPG. The proposed future research activity includes Strategic Research Plans, 3 to 5 year Medium Term Research Plans, and research projects for the following year. The recommendations from the RPGs are coordinated by the Research Co-ordinating Committee and made to the Ministry of Fisheries.
In 2003, the following RPGs were convened:
- Hoki/Middle depths
- Inshore finfish
- Recreational fisheries
- Stock assessment methods
- National Rock Lobster Management Group
- Aquatic Environment
- Aquaculture and Enhancement
The results of these planning meetings were then fed into an integration process convened by the Ministry.
As customary fisheries research is not contestable, the timetable for determining these research needs is independent of the tender rounds. Customary fisheries research needs for 2004/05 will be discussed with Tangata Whenua at the local and regional level as appropriate.
Research Co-ordinating Committee
The Research Co-ordinating Committee (RCC) is composed of Ministry of Fisheries staff, stakeholder representatives, other government departments, and science providers. The RCC serves as a consultative forum within which fisheries stakeholders can discuss and evaluate future directions for fisheries research. The purpose of the RCC is to discuss, evaluate, coordinate the development of, and recommend proposed future research activity.
The RCC met on 21 October 2003. The purpose of that meeting was to co-ordinate the results of the research planning process. During the meeting each of the research proposals for 2004/05 that had been discussed at the research planning meetings were discussed and evaluated by the RCC. This document was prepared based on the input received at the RCC meeting.
Marine Biodiversity and Biosecurity Research
The Ministry of Fisheries has responsibility for contracting some research in the marine biodiversity and marine biosecurity areas funded through the Biodiversity Strategy. Because the stakeholder groups with interests in these two areas of research are wider than those with interests in fisheries research, the Ministry has established a separate but parallel research planning process for these areas. The process incorporates the main elements of the research planning process used for fisheries research described in this document, i.e. Medium Term Research Plans, Research Planning Groups, and specific research proposals. Research proposals for these two research areas have been consulted on separately and are not included here.
OUTPUTS FROM THE RESEARCH PLANNING PROCESS
There have been two major outputs from the research planning process during 2003:
- updated draft Medium Term Research Plans
- research proposals for 2004/05
The Ministry of Fisheries Strategic Research Directions document was not updated during 2003.
Ministry of Fisheries Strategic Research Directions
The updated Ministry of Fisheries Strategic Research Directions document was distributed in October 2001. It is a “living” document that will be reviewed and modified on a regular basis to take into account changing needs in fisheries management and research.
This document is not a blueprint for all research in aquatic fisheries in New Zealand. It relates specifically to research required by the Ministers of Fisheries and Biosecurity, and contracted by the Ministry of Fisheries, to support their statutory decision making roles and support the policy initiatives implemented by the Ministry. The principles set out in this document are intended to apply to any research undertaken for these purposes regardless of who undertakes the research. Research that does not support the Ministers’ roles is not addressed.
This document will be used as the framework and to set the directions for more detailed research planning. It will be used as the basis for the development of Strategic, Medium Term (3 to 5 year), and Operational Research Plans for particular species/fisheries or research areas.
Medium Term Research Plans
Draft Medium Term Research Plans, based on the draft strategic research document, were reviewed and updated for a number of fisheries and topic areas during 2003. These were:
- Shellfish Fisheries
- Inshore Fisheries
- Hoki/Middle Depths Fisheries
- Deepwater Fisheries
- Antarctic Fisheries
- Aquatic Environment
- Pelagic Fisheries
- Marine Recreational Fisheries
- Aquaculture and Enhancement
RESEARCH PROPOSALS FOR 2004/05
Fisheries research needs for the 2004/05 fishing year were identified from the following sources:
- Fishery Assessment Working Groups during the 2003 stock assessment meetings
- the Ministry’s regional liaison networks
- the Ministry’s Fisheries Management Group
- fisheries research science providers
- Research Planning Group meetings
The research needs identified were discussed and evaluated, and recommendations made, during the research planning meetings. The Ministry’s Science Group then developed the research needs that were identified as required for 2004/05 into specific research proposals with input from Fisheries Management staff. These research proposals for 2004/05 were based on the draft Medium Term Research Plans where possible.
The results of the discussion on the research proposals for 2004/05 held at the RCC meeting and written submissions from stakeholders will be used by the Ministry’s Science Group in conjunction with Fisheries Management staff to formulate their recommendations for required fisheries research services for 2004/05.
MINISTRY OF FISHERIES PRIORITY SETTING PROCESS
The Ministry’s Science Group met in November 2003 to evaluate the research proposals and recommend research priorities for 2004/05. The Team assigned a priority of High, Medium or Low for each project, using the priority setting standards described below. The ranking is based on the consensus of the Science Group after receiving input from other Ministry of Fisheries staff. The Ministry’s priority for each project is included in this draft Fisheries Research Services document.
PRIORITY SETTING STANDARDS FOR 2004/05
Standards for determining priorities for research for the 2004/05 year remained unchanged from the 2003/04 year.
The following are the standards and criteria that should be considered when evaluating proposals
and determining priorities for research for the following year.
1) How does the proposed research fit to the Strategic and Medium Term Research Plans and management/business plan for the resource? Factors that could be considered include:
- the document Ministry of Fisheries Strategic Research Directions
- the agreed fisheries plan for the fishery
- the Strategic and Medium Term Research Plans for the fishery
- the fit of the proposed research to the management issues and statutory management requirements arising from the plans
2) What is the size/value/importance of the resource or fishery, including both commercial and non-commercial sectors? Factors that could be considered include:
- the commercial tonnage and value
- recreational and Maori customary take and interest
- interests of other fisheries stakeholders
- intrinsic and ecosystem values
3) Are there any stock assessment and/or management issues? Factors that could be considered include:
- concerns about sustainability or other management issues
- the level of certainty of current stock assessment and management information
- the level of urgency for addressing stock assessment and management issues
- concerns about the impacts of fishing on the aquatic environment, including biodiversity, and the need to avoid, remedy, or mitigate any impacts
4) What are the merits of the proposed research? Factors that could be considered include:
- feasibility and scientific relevance
- applicability to other fisheries or research areas and potential spin-offs and flow-on effects
- the likely timescale of the research
- the likely consequences for the resource if the research did not proceed
5) What are the benefits and costs of the project in terms of its major and minor outputs? Factors that could be considered include:
- the likely costs of the research
- the likely costs of not doing the research, e.g. over- or under-fishing of the resource, revenue or information lost, etc. if the research is not done
- the direct and indirect benefits, e.g. revenue or information gained, etc., of doing the research
- assessment of the trade-offs of paying for research now as against some time in the future
There are a number of services where the scope of the activities required cannot be specified in detail in advance. Work in the following services will be contracted by the Ministry on an ‘as and when needed’ basis during the 2004/05 financial year:
- stock assessment process
- scientific support for international fishing agreements
- technical input into policy advice
- socio-economic research
- traditional and customary fishing
RESEARCH DATA MANAGEMENT
Fisheries research data is owned by the Ministry on behalf of the Crown. Since 1 October 1997, the Ministry has contracted the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Ltd. (NIWA) to manage the research data. Contestability of this service may be considered in future years.
TENDERING OF PROJECTS
The research projects in this document forms the basis for the tender document.