Dynamic Ocean Management: Integrating Scientific and Technological Capacity with Law, Policy, and Management

Alistair J. Hobday, Sara M. Maxwell, Julia Forgie, Jan McDonald, Marta Darby, Katy Seto, Helen Bailey, Steven J. Bogard, Dana K. Briscoe, Daniel P. Costa, Larry B. Crowder, Daniel C. Dunn, Sabrina Fossette, Patrick N. Halpin, Jason R. Hartog, Elliott L. Hazen, Ben G. Lascelles, Rebecca L. Lewison, Gregory Poulos, Ann Powers

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The ocean is a dynamic environment with ocean currents and winds
    moving surface waters across large distances. Many animals that live in
    the ocean, particularly in offshore regions, are mobile in space and in time,
    as are most human users. Spatial management responses have typically
    partitioned the ocean into different regions with fixed management
    boundaries. In some regions a particular activity may be forbidden, in
    another it may be permitted but regulated, and in others it may be allowed
    without any regulation. In contrast, dynamic ocean management (DOM)
    changes in space and time in response to the shifting nature of the ocean
    and its users. DOM techniques have been applied in a limited number of
    situations around the world—notably for fisheries—to regulate or restrict
    the capture of a particular marine species. DOM requires scientific,
    technological, management, legal, and policy capacity across a range of
    elements. The article outlines seven of these elements and describes
    requirements and challenges for their implementation. Specifically, the
    elements considered are: (1) tools and data collection, (2) data upload and
    management, (3) data processing, (4) data delivery, (5) decision-making,
    (6) implementation, and (7) enforcement. Not all elements may be required
    and not all management, policy, and legal issues will be relevant to all
    applications. However, these elements represent major considerations in the
    application of DOM. Overall, we find that the scientific and technological
    capacity for DOM is strong but there are a range of underutilized policy
    applications. We give examples of how these policies could be expanded to
    provide for a broader application of dynamic ocean management. There are
    distinct regional variations in the capacity to implement these elements
    whether on a voluntary or compulsory basis. To use DOM effectively, the
    science and technology required for DOM needs to be better integrated with
    the enabling policy.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)125-165
    Number of pages41
    JournalStanford Environmental Law Journal
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2014


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