NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Robert Deacon

2127 North Hall
Department of Economics
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9210

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

September 2010Overcoming the common pool problem through voluntary cooperation: the rise and fall of a fishery cooperative
with Dominic P. Parker, Christopher Costello: w16339
We analyze a seldom used, but highly promising form of rights-based management over common pool resources that involves the self-selection of heterogeneous fishermen into sectors. The fishery management regime assigns one portion of an overall catch quota to a voluntary cooperative, with the remainder exploited as a commons by those choosing to fish independently. Data from an Alaska commercial salmon fishery confirm our model's key predictions, that the co-op would facilitate the consolidation of fishing effort, coordination of harvest activities, sharing of information and provision of shared infrastructure. We estimate that the resulting rent gains were at least 25%. A lawsuit filed by two disgruntled independents led to the co-op's demise, an outcome also predicted by our model. Our an...

Published: Robert Deacon, Dominic Parker, and Christopher Costello. Reforming fisheries: lessons from a self-selected cooperative. Journal of Law and Economics , 56:83–125, 2013.

 
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