Fish and fisheries in space and time

Navn på bevillingshaver

Nis Sand Jacobsen


Technical University of Denmark


DKK 1,116,092




Reintegration Fellowships


The world’s oceans are changing due to human impacts such as climate change and fisheries. These changes have profound effects on the abundance and spatial distribution of exploited marine species (e.g., Atlantic cod and herring). The project seeks to investigate how we can improve the fisheries management of fish stocks by considering their spatial distribution, how they interact with each other, and how climate change will affect them. In a future with increasing temperatures, fish are likely to modify their distribution, as they seek towards areas with more favorable living conditions. The project aims to investigate how spatial distribution influences predator-prey relationships, fisheries, and the management of exploited marine species.


Fisheries are commercially and culturally important, but fish populations need to be carefully managed in order to avoid overexploitation. Currently, fisheries management often ignores interactions between species, and does not take into account the potential complications of spatial structure for ecology and the fisheries themselves. The project aims to improve fisheries management by quantifying uncertainty related to future environmental changes, as well as providing a framework to help us better understand the interplay between fisheries and marine spatial ecology, eventually leading to more sustainable fisheries.


A challenge when working with fish stocks is that we cannot see them, and they continuously move around the ocean. A solution to investigate how fish stocks respond to global change is to construct mathematical models that imitate the biological dynamics of the fish populations, i.e., growth, reproduction, natural mortality, and fisheries. For this project, I will construct state of the art ecosystem models that take into account spatial dynamics and interactions between species, and couple them with models currently used in fisheries management. This coupling of models (called management strategy evaluation) creates a framework to test the robustness, precision and uncertainty of fisheries management in a changing future.

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