Social Capital in the NE Ground Fish Industry: Request for Supplemental Funding

We hypothesize that the success of sectors may be influenced by the ability of sector
members to work together, trust one another, and socialize together. It is also hypothesized that
successful sectors will build norms and networks that enable collective action over time. The
value of these relationships is commonly referred to in social and economic literature as social
capital. Similarly, it is proposed that part of the success of non-sector fishermen is due to the
degree of social capital inherent in their social networks. There has been no evaluation of the
baseline level of social capital in the New England commercial ground fish industry or of the
proposed sectors. The research team assembled for this project has designed and is in the process
of conducting a survey that will collect the baseline information necessary to measure the social
capital of sectors and of non-sector fishermen. This project provides funding for analysis of data
from the social capital survey. Levels of social capital for sectors and the common pool will be
evaluated based on responses to the survey which is collecting information on various
characteristics and attitudes of fishermen and on the strength of the relationships between
fishermen.