Position Description

Economist
Location Miami, FL
Req # 6150
# of openings 1
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ECS is seeking a Economist to work in our Miami, FL office.  

Job Description:

  • The Department of Commerce (DOC), National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC) has a requirement for an economist with expertise/experience in natural resource allocation/mechanism design to support the Social Science Research Group (SSRG).  The SSRG conducts applied socioeconomic and cultural research on the use and management of living marine resources managed under federal jurisdiction from North Carolina to Texas and in the U.S. Caribbean and managed by the three Fishery Management Councils (FMCs) in the Southeast Region.   
  • The Fishery Management Councils (FMCs) have been evaluating the allocation of allowable catch among many different stakeholders. The primary stakeholders are the commercial and recreational fisheries. However, there are also allocations between for-hire and private anglers and among states in the recreational sector. To date, the allocations between the commercial and recreational sectors have been administratively determined by the FMCs.
  • Some allocations are controversial and the FMCs do not have the complete information to accurately weigh the benefits and costs of the different allocation levels. Consequently, there is a growing need for research into economics of allocation in the commercial and recreational sectors.
  • There is a special need for research into incentive-based allocation and fishery management mechanisms. Incentive-based allocation could include, for example, auctions to allocate quota or systems whereby the recreational sector could participate in existing markets for commercial quota or vice versa. There are also potential gains from the use of lotteries or fees to assign quota in the recreational sector.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
The SEFSC conducts multidisciplinary research to inform natural resource management in the Southeast U.S., including the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean and South Atlantic. The SEFSC science is used by NOAA, Regional Fishery Management Councils, Interstate and International Fishery Commissions, and other Federal, state and local agencies to make informed management decisions to protect and conserve the living marine resources in the Southeastern U.S. and Atlantic high seas. The research of the SSRG:

  • Interprets available fisheries information from an economic and cultural perspective;
  • Designs data collection programs to support socioeconomic research;
  • Develops models and estimates relationships to evaluate the economic effects of fishery policies;
  • Evaluates the sociocultural effects of fishery policies on anglers and fishing communities;
  • Provides research results and policy advice to fishery management councils; and
  • Supplies social sciences support for other NOAA Fisheries’ programs.

OBJECTIVE
Obtain technical support in the economics of fishery allocations. In particular, the SEFSC would like to design and test incentive-based policies for the management of marine fisheries resources. The SEFSC seeks to explore the creation of a marketplace for fishing quota with rules and infrastructure that can lead to efficient quota transfers. The marketplace should promote participation, reduce gaming, and disseminate information in a way that improves liquidity, efficiency, and equity.  The project will implement one or more field experiments to demonstrate the feasibility of and test different marketplace designs

ACTIVITIES/DELIVERABLES

  • Assemble and review the relevant literature and report on the applicability to fishery allocation issues.
  • Develop a set of potential incentive-based fishery management policies, including, but not limited to auctions, fees, and marketplace design.  
  • Working closely with NOAA and Council staff, coordinate efforts to:
    • Select at least one incentive-based allocation policy to test in a field experiment.
    • Design a field experiment, including data collection requirements, to demonstrate and evaluate the selected incentive-based allocation policy or policies.
    • Ensure the plan satisfies legal and regulatory requirements for implementation.
    • Implement and monitor the field experiment and provide periodic written reports of the progress and issues.
    • Write-up the results of the field experiment in a report that clearly shows the methods and results.
    • Present the results to fisheries managers from NOAA and relevant FMC.
    • Publish results in peer reviewed journal or as a NOAA Technical Memorandum.

TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

  • Occasional short duration

Required Skills:

  • PhD in Economics
  • Ability to apply economic theory to different problems or domains.  
  • The ideal candidate will have education and experience in mechanism and/or market design, including, but not limited to, game theory, experimental economics, computer science, and operations research.
  • Experience with fisheries or other natural resource allocation problems is a plus.
  • Excellent organizational skills, the ability to work in a fast-paced program with multiple concurrent tasks and short deadlines.  
  • Strong written communication and analytical skills.

ECS is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate or allow discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, age, national origin, citizenship, disability, veteran status or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law. ECS promotes affirmative action for minorities, women, disabled persons, and veterans.

ECS is a leading mid-sized provider of technology services to the United States Federal Government. We are focused on people, values and purpose. Every day, our 2300+ employees focus on providing their technical talent to support the Federal Agencies and Departments of the US Government to serve, protect and defend the American People.

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