Lunchtime Talk: What Affects the Harvest in the Sitka Subsistence Herring Fishery?

Sitka Sound in Southeast Alaska is home to one of the state’s largest commercially viable stocks of Pacific herring, which are harvested for their roe (eggs) in the spring, just before they spawn. There is also a subsistence herring fishery in Sitka Sound, with subsistence users collecting the roe after the herring spawn. In recent years, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has increased the commercial guideline harvest level—and conflict between commercial and subsistence fishermen has also increased. James Shewmake, a research professional at ISER, earned his master's in natural resource management for his research on the subsistence herring fishery in Sitka Sound. He found that the size of the subsistence harvest depends not only on how many people participate, but also on other measures of participants’ effort and on harvesting opportunities.
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Lunchtime Talk: Economic Development in the Norwegian Arctic

The Barents region is a sprawling area of international cooperation that includes the northernmost parts of Sweden, Norway, and Finland, as well as Northwest Russia. It was created under an agreement among those countries in the early 1990s. Thomas Nilsen is the editor of BarentsObserver.com, an online public affairs and news site operated by the Norwegian Barents Secretariat, which promotes cooperation among Barents member countries, particularly cooperation between Norway and Russia. At ISER, Mr. Nilsen talked about a range of topics, including Arctic oil and gas drilling in Norwegian waters, transportation of oil in Norwegian and Russian Arctic waters, potential routes across the Arctic as sea ice melts, and the Norwegian government’s High North policies and strategies for promoting economic and social development in the Arctic. Mr. Nilsen's visit to the United States was sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program.
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Lunchtime Talk: The Seafood Market in Spain: Traditions and New Trends

Jose Polanco, a professor of marketing and economics at the University of Cantabria, in Santander, Spain, is an expert on European seafood retailers and consumers and the Spanish seafood market. He talked about how the Spanish seafood market combines both old traditions—such as consumer fish markets—with new trends, such as growing supermarket sales of frozen fish and rapidly growing imports of farmed pangasius and other whitefish. Download the presentation (PDF, 1.57MB).
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2014 Alaska Construction Spending Forecast

Spending for construction in Alaska—including both public and private spending—will be about $9.2 billion in 2014, up 18% from spending in 2013. Increased spending by the oil and gas industry will account for most of the growth in private spending, and a larger Department of Defense budget will lead growth in public spending. State-funded projects will also be a major part of construction spending, with a number of projects that were funded in recent large state capital budgets starting or continuing in 2014.

These are among the findings of a new forecast by Scott Goldsmith, professor emeritus of economics at ISER, funded by Northrim Bank and prepared for the Associated General Contractors of Alaska. To read the forecast, click here (PDF, 1.2MB).…

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