Training Fishery Managers in a Changing Academic Environment: People, Politics, and Psd

Wednesday, September 11, 2013: 10:20 AM
Fulton (Statehouse Convention Center)
Daniel A. Isermann , College of Natural Resources, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Stevens Point, WI
Historically, many academic institutions trained future fishery management biologists while conducting research that addressed important management issues for resource agencies.  In several cases, this symbiotic relationship has diminished, resulting in fewer graduates that have completed training traditionally required of management biologists.  This transition is logical to some degree, because the current job market could not support the number of graduates historically produced by these institutions, but these classically-trained students remain in high demand. The research climate at many larger universities requires that simple questions regarding management be integrated into a larger ecological framework which increases the range and magnitude of grant monies that can be brought to campus. As such, smaller academic institutions may be better suited to continue the traditional training of fishery management biologists because of less pressure on faculty to publish or acquire specified levels of extramural funding. Many of these smaller institutions have few fisheries faculty and can greatly benefit from collaboration with researchers at larger institutions. Maintaining programs that provide traditional training for management biologists will require support and commitment from resource agencies and university administrators. Additionally, creative collaboration will become increasingly important because of changes in funding opportunities and the complexity of agency questions.