North Carolina Sea Grant

August 5, 2016 |


John Fear, 919-515-9104,

Posted Aug. 5, 2016


Anna Birkenbach is evaluating the link between catch share management and ex vessel prices. Graphic by Anna Birkenbach

Anna Birkenbach is a 2016 recipient of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant Office and NOAA Fisheries joint fellowship. She is a doctoral student in environmental policy at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

Birkenbach evaluates how management of catch shares, or quotas, affects fishing season lengths and ex-vessel prices in U.S. fisheries. Her advisor is Martin Smith, an environmental economist at Duke.

This two-year fellowship in marine resource economics will enable her to answer a new set of questions arising from her initial research, issues that require a more sophisticated approach and finer-scale data on fishing activity.

“As a NMFS fellow, I will explore how catch shares influence microlevel decision making on the water — including decisions on targeting, timing and interspecies substitutions — using the Northeast Multispecies Sector Program,” Birkenbach says, referring to a management area that includes New England and the Mid-Atlantic.

“This research aims to inform ongoing discussions about the role of catch shares in fisheries management, as well as possible means of fine-tuning these policies to maximize the value generated from the resources and balance the goals of ecological and economic sustainability.”

Birkenbach holds a master’s degree in applied economics, and master’s and bachelor’s degrees in public policy, all from Duke.

For more about this fellowship and to apply, go to and select NMFS/SG Fellowship.


North Carolina Sea Grant: Your link to research and resources for a healthier coast

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