Commercial fisheries and aquaculture activities with insufficient levels of social support can negatively affect industry member well-being and contribute to restricted resource access. More & appropriate engagement is needed to improve stakeholder and community trust & support, both with those affected by industry activity, and with those who affect industry activity (i.e. decision-makers and influencers).
This project addresses the need to ensure that the range of engagement activities and strategies undertaken by organisations and operators within fisheries and aquaculture are effective at:
- building relationships and trustworthiness;
- understanding concerns and needs arising from industry activity; and
- influencing preferences and decisions.
Limited evaluation has been undertaken regarding the effectiveness of engagement strategies and activities in meeting predefined goals. Similarly, limited opportunities exist to transfer knowledge between industry organisations of successful and future engagement practice; or to support improved return on investment of engagement strategies.
The NSW Fishing Industry has a need to improve relationships and trustworthiness with key stakeholders, and to achieve specific outcomes for PFA members, which include; improve social license by industry taking the lead on its own imagery, and an increase in the consumption and variety of NSW seafood.
In addition, there is limited feedback on whether communication strategies about to embark on will be effective at achieving the PFA’s desired outcomes, and there is information to help develop long term engagement strategies and direct limited resources to the most effective activities.
Therefore, there is a need to select a range of community engagement strategies and activities, and evaluate these against predefined goals. Engagement successes need to be extended to other industry organisations,
and if appropriate, decision support materials to be developed to extend knowledge adoption of the findings and materials.