Symposium Information

This symposium will bring together international fishery scientists, managers, and stakeholders to share insights into the current status and future prospects on ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM). After achieving general international consensus on the need for EBFM in the 1990s, to what extent is it being successfully implemented? This symposium builds on the 16th Lowell Wakefield Fisheries Symposium, "Ecosystem Approaches for Fisheries Management," held in 1998, as well as international symposia held in France, Iceland, and Norway in the last decade.

Executive Summary

The 26th Lowell Wakefield Fisheries Symposium was convened at the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage, AK, during November 8-11, 2010. The topic of this year's symposium was Ecosystems 2010: Global Progress on Ecosystem-based Fisheries Management. In attendance were 108 participants from 19 countries. This successful symposium was hosted by Alaska Sea Grant with funding provided by 12 regional, national, and international cosponsors. The Steering Committee of 9 scientists was chaired by SFOS Fisheries Professor Gordon Kruse.

Oral presentations and posters were presented along four main themes: progress on regional applications, new analytical tools and evaluation of ecosystem indicators, human dimensions, and case studies and practical solutions. Keynote and invited speakers highlighted the international emphasis of this symposium with presentations by scientists from Thailand, Korea, Japan, Australia, Namibia, Norway, and Atlantic Canada.

The symposium achieved a general consensus on ecosystem-based fisheries management, also known as an ecosystem approach to fisheries. There was a convergence on broad ecosystem management objectives, principles, approaches, tools, and involvement of stakeholders. A clear consensus also emerged on the need to conduct risk assessments to set priorities. In general, the greatest risk identified for many of the regions of the world is the lack of effective governance. Rectifying this central problem is a prerequisite for any form of sound fishery management. Other common struggles include the difficulty to obtain clear operational objectives from policy makers and the need to develop practical approaches that can be implemented in developing countries with limited fiscal resources. In well developed countries, ecosystem models have been constructed to improve understanding of ecosystem dynamics in many regions, but it remains unclear whether these models are capable of providing explicit management advice, such as prescription of biological reference points and total allowable catches.

Accepted papers presented at the symposium will be published in a peer-reviewed, edited book. For additional information, contact Gordon Kruse (


Since the 1990s, fisheries managers have been advised to broaden their scope of awareness beyond single-species considerations owing to

As a result, fisheries management has been shifting toward an ecosystem-based fisheries management, also called an ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF). EAF strives to balance diverse societal objectives by taking into account the knowledge and uncertainties of biotic, abiotic, and human components of ecosystems and their interactions and applying an integrated approach to fisheries within ecologically meaningful boundaries.

Considerable progress has been made by organizations such as FAO, ICES, and PICES, to develop the framework, rationale, and international consensus toward ecosystem approaches. Efforts have been directed toward developing new modeling tools and ecosystem indicators that can be used for implementation. Yet some substantial challenges remain, including the need to develop operational objectives, requirements for more empirical information and associated increased costs of implementation, and practical matters of implementing the ecosystem approach by institutions that have failed to successfully implement single-species management.

For these reasons, it is timely to undertake a comprehensive review of EBFM, including new advancements and ongoing obstacles, case studies of implementation including successes and failures, progress toward operational objectives, new institutional arrangements, practical eco-region definitions, new analytical tools, and pragmatic approaches under cost constraints.


The goals of Ecosystems 2010 are twofold. First, we seek to evaluate global progress toward ecosystem-based fisheries management, by reviewing regional case studies, development of new analytical tools and practical approaches toward future progress. Second, given this evaluation, we seek to offer explicit, practical advice for progress in EBFM implementation.


Oral presentations and posters addressing the Ecosystems 2010 symposium theme will be presented on the following topics:

Download the abstract book [PDF; 865 KB] for further details on the presentations.

The program will be updated as necessary until the time of the meeting. The program includes presentations by researchers from Norway, India, Thailand, Argentina, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Taiwan, Iran, Brazil, Sweden, South Africa, Canada, Australia, and the United States.

The official language of the symposium is English. Participants needing interpretation or translation services should provide their own, and notify the symposium coordinator.

Invited Speakers

The following experts will give invited talks at the symposium.

Symposium keynote speaker
Session 1: Progress on regional applications of ecosystem-based management
Session 2: New analytical tools
Session 3: Human dimensions of ecosystem-based fisheries management
Session 4: Case studies and practical solutions


Alaska Sea Grant will publish a peer-reviewed proceedings, including full papers based on oral and poster presentations, soon after the symposium. Members of the steering committee will serve as editors for the symposium proceedings. Full manuscripts are due by November 11, 2010; see manuscript guidelines [PDF; 182 KB] for information on how to prepare submissions. Please submit electronic copy to Sue Keller.

Location and Facilities

All meeting sessions will be held at the Hotel Captain Cook in downtown Anchorage. The Captain Cook offers very nice accommodations with wireless Internet in meeting and guest rooms. Guest amenities include a café, fine dining, business center, health club, swimming pool, and whirlpool. Most guest rooms have great views of mountains or Cook Inlet.

Guest rooms will be available at the special meeting rate of $99/night single or double occupancy plus 12% bed tax. Be sure to make your reservations directly with the hotel by October 8, 2010. This rate extends three days prior to and three days after the meeting dates. To secure the rate, register online and use the group code "seagrant". Or call the Captain Cook reservation number and mention the Alaska Sea Grant group and the dates of the meeting, November 8-11, 2010.

Hotel Captain Cook
939 W. 5th Ave.
Anchorage, AK 99501
1-800-843-1950 toll free or 907-276-6000

Visitor Information

For information on sightseeing opportunities and attractions, please see the following:


The registration fee for the symposium is $275.00 US ($200 student) if paid on or before October 8, 2010. The late registration fee will be $325.00 ($250 student) after October 8. The fee covers continental breakfast and break refreshments daily, catered receptions on November 8 and 9, symposium materials, and published proceedings. You are urged to register and pay your fees in advance so that adequate materials are available.

If you have any questions or need further information, please see the contact information at the bottom of this page.

Steering Committee


Symposium sponsors

Additional sponsors

Symposium Contact Information

Alaska Sea Grant College Program
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Phone: 907-474-6703 • Fax: 907-474-6285