Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
Fishing boat by the seashore
Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay /

Fisheries and Food Security

To sustainably feed 9.6 billion people, overfished stocks must be rebuilt, and the production and environmental performance of aquaculture must be increased. 

Toward this end, the Ocean and Coastal Policy Program works with tropical governments to identify policies to help rebuild or maintain marine fisheries so that they can contribute more food and jobs to help end hunger and poverty. Currently, the program is working with the Duke Marine Lab, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, and WorldFish to conduct a global assessment of the contributions of small-scale fisheries to sustainable development, entitled Illuminating Hidden Harvests. Additionally, as science-to-policy advisory facility the program is working with the Pacific Catalyst consortium to assist decision makers in countries in the western and central Pacific Ocean to sustainably govern the use of tuna resources. Finally, the Program housed the Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum, a program that provided policy-neutral support to U.S. federal fisheries managers from 2008–2018. Archived resources are available at



Oceans@Duke is a multidisciplinary community of Duke’s scholars working on challenges to sustainable use of the oceans.

Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum

The Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum (2008-2018) provided policy-neutral support to strengthen the federal fisheries management process. It provided expert convening, facilitation, and research services on a wide range of fisheries science and management topics.

Applying GEMS with the NOAA Restoration Center

Increasingly, restoration funders and practitioners are paying attention to how coastal restoration projects affect people and communities.The GEMS project identified metrics for social and economic outcomes of coastal restoration, including employment, local economy, recreation, food provision, and mental health benefits. We are now working to apply the GEMS methods for assessing fishing and related outcomes to support restoration decisions made by NOAA’s Damage Assessment Remediation and Restoration (DARRP).