Martha Piper Fund Project (2011)

Funded by the UBC Martha Piper Research Fund, this project aimed to improve how the human dimensions of fisheries are evaluated in fisheries. In addition, all sustainability fields in Rapfish were updated. 

The project resulted in a peer-reviewed paper:

Pitcher, T.J., Lam. M., Ainsworth, C., Martindale, A., Nakamura, K., Perry, R.I. and Ward, T. (2013) Improvements to the ‘Rapfish’ rapid evaluation technique for fisheries: integrating ecological and human dimensions. J. Fish Biol. 83: 865-889. 

Principal Project Achievements

  • Multidisciplinary, international team from academia, government, industry, NGOs, and UN consultants improved the human dimensions aspects of the Rapfish technique for assessing sustainability of fisheries, leaving the revised technique ready for test data.
  • Social, Economic, Institutional and Ethical evaluation fields address the semi-quantitative assessment of the status of the human dimensions of fisheries.
  • The new Institutional evaluation field includes a section covering Legality and adopts an innovative but intuitive nested structure.
  • Substantial revisions to Social and Economic evaluation fields address key features of sustainability more effectively.
  • Revisions improve the Ecological and Technological evaluation fields of Rapfish.
  • Established this public website ( provides full background information and ongoing updates of the technique.
  • Link that performs Rapfish data analysis for any user, (awaiting final implementation)
  • MPRF Project leads to four oral papers and six academic publications, a Major Thematic Grant proposal to the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies, an NSF proposal, and a research contract (under negotiation) with a consortium of NGOs for Rapfish analyses.

The full text of the Final Report on this project may be downloaded below.

Tony Pitcher,
Oct 4, 2011, 3:54 PM