The Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) is an intergovernmental organisation responsible for the management of tuna and tuna-like species in the Indian Ocean. The IOTC was established in 1993 under Article XIV of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) constitution.
The IOTC Secretariat’s Science team’s primary function is to assist the IOTC Scientific Committee and its working parties carry out four key science based functions and responsibilities. Briefly these include\: reviewing the status of the stocks and to gather, analyse and disseminate scientific information (including catch and effort statistics and other relevant data); supporting research and development activities in respect of the stocks and fisheries covered by the IOTC; and reviewing the economic and social aspects of the fisheries based on the stocks covered by the Agreement.
The IOTC Secretariat's Compliance team's primary function is to assist the IOTC Compliance Committee in its work to review and assess compliance by IOTC member countries in the implementation of the IOTC Conservation and Management Measures. The Compliance Section also provides support to members in the implementation of Monitoring, Control and Surveillance tools adopted by the Commission; and is responsible for maintaining several important elements of the IOTC website, e.g. Record of Authorized Vessels, Active Vessels List, IUU Vessels List, List of Designated Ports, and the IOTC Bigeye Tuna Statistical Document Programme.
Global Call Purpose
The purpose of the Global Call is to attract global talent for IOTC Consultant and Personal Services assignments as they become available. The Global call will create a roster of applicants from which candidates to deliver various science and compliance assignments will be selected.
The consultants will report to a Team Leader of the assignment and/or IOTC Executive Secretary.
Below is a list of areas that will be covered by the technical specialists roster\:
- Fisheries stock assessment, including data poor methods
- Indices of abundance, including methods of standardization
- Quantitative fisheries modelling
- Management strategy evaluation
- Qualitative assessment of fisheries indicators and datasets
- Ecological risk assessment
- Bycatch mitigation measures
- Ecosystem Based Fisheries Management
- Strategic design and planning
- Social and economic analyses
Compliance and fisheries management expert\:
- Fisheries monitoring, control and surveillance
- Fisheries policy and regulations
Below are the cross-cutting themes covered by the roster\:
- Fisheries science
- Fisheries management (including compliance)
- IT and IS Support
- Programming including creation of applications, databases and other IT requirements
- Information Management
- Capacity development
- Programme/Project Development, Management and Operations
- Monitoring and Evaluation
Tasks and responsibilities
Fisheries stock assessment, including data poor methods
- Utilize current methods applied in fisheries stock assessment science and the integration of scientific information in the provision of fisheries management advice.
- Perform stock assessments for IOTC species using appropriate models including integrated statistical catch-at-age models.
- Assemble and produce assessment input data such as catch-at-size and tag-recapture, evaluate the quality and limitations of input datasets.
- Generate visual summaries of stock assessment outputs through the use of Kobe phase plots and Kobe strategy matrices to assist the IOTC Working parties and Scientific Committee in formulating management advice to the commission.
- Evaluate model assumptions, quantify assessment uncertainties using robust statistical methods.
- Review and provide constructive criticism on all stock assessment papers and other analysis in support of stock assessments for IOTC science Working Parties.
- Provide technical support and expert advice to stock assessments conducted by the IOTC Working parties, plan and implement evaluations of the assessment model performance.
- Undertake research to improve current assessment mythology, develop methods to assess data-limited stocks based on data availability and quality for providing appropriate management advice.
- Lead and support capacity building initiatives agreed to by the IOTC and upon request by IOTC Contracting Parties, relevant to these duties and responsibilities.
Indices of abundance, including methods of standardization
- Develop CPUE standardizations and provide indices of abundance for selected IOTC species using GLM, GAM, and GLMM models.
- Review and improve current standardisation methods for the main IOTC species such as the use of cluster analyses or alternative methods for identifying targeting effect.
- Investigate data transformation methods in order to normalize residuals and alternative modelling approaches and to accommodate data with zero catches.
- Provide support to IOTC members requesting assistance in analyzing catch effort data for use in stock assessments.
Quantitative fisheries modelling
- Undertake the analysis of fishery dependent and independent datasets (catch effort, age and length composition, biological samples, tag-recapture data etc.) using a range of mathematical and statistics modelling techniques, to estimate the fishery impact on stock status of IOTC species.
- Develop analytical software and tools to support CPUE standardizations, stock assessment and population modelling of IOTC stocks using generic programming languages (e.g. C and R).
- Employ a variety of analytical and programming techniques to study the spatial and temporal dynamics of exploited IOTC species including commercial and bycatch species, and to investigate the wider ecosystem impact of fishing.
Management strategy evaluation
- Collaborate in the development of operating models that simulates population and fishery dynamics for Management Strategy Evaluation (MSE) of IOTC stocks.
- Use MSE to conduct simulations and evaluate candidate Management Procedures (MPs) that meet target management objectives for the primary IOTC stocks.
- Communicate MSE results and provide management advice to the IOTC Scientific Committee and subsidiary bodies, TCMP and/or Commission as required.
- Develop software to meet the evolving needs of operating model conditioning and projection requirements for the MSE.
- Lead and participate in the capacity building activities on Management Strategy Evaluation.
Qualitative assessment of fisheries indicators and datasets
- Review the procedures used for the collection and processing of fisheries data from fleets operating in the Indian Ocean, in the context of the IOTC core datasets.
- Provide a qualitative assessment of the data collected, data sources, and data validation and processing (including stratification, and substitution methods where data is missing for sample strata).
Ecological risk assessment
- Collate available data from a range of sources as necessary.
- Lead the production of a Level 2 Ecological Risk Assessment for bycatch species caught in fisheries under the IOTC mandate.
- Undertake a Productivity-Sensitivity Analysis (PSA), Sustainability Assessment for Fishing Effects (SAFE) or other appropriate analyses.
- Identify particular areas of concern, to the extent possible, including but not limited to i.) prioritization of most vulnerable species by fishing gear, ii.) identification of major sources of mortality, iii.) identification of critical areas and seasons.
- Identify major sources of uncertainty and provide recommendations on the data required (by gear/fleet) to undertake more quantitative methods of assessment.
Bycatch mitigation measures
- Lead and participate in training activities on best practice bycatch handling and release methods
- Develop guidelines for best practice release methods for gear types and species for which advice is currently lacking
- Produce training materials for fishers and observers on best practice bycatch handling and release methods
- Develop an experimental research framework for the analysis of the effectiveness of bycatch mitigation measures in Indian Ocean fisheries
Social and economic analyses
- Collate available statistical information for the construction of indicators by country
- Develop appropriate social and economic indicators for the Indian Ocean tuna fisheries
- Establish reference points for the evaluation of indicators
- Conduct stakeholder surveys to evaluate the instructiveness of indicators
Ecosystem Based fisheries Management
- Lead capacity building activities related to improving understanding of EBFM
- Develop a framework for the operationalisation of EBFM in tuna fisheries
- Develop Ecosystem indicators to be used in Ecosystem assessments
- Development of an ecosystem report card to monitor, summarise and communicate ecosystem impacts by tuna fisheries
Compliance and fisheries management expert
Fisheries monitoring, control and surveillance
- Provide assistance to IOTC Members on the implementation of IOTC Resolutions related to monitoring, control and surveillance.
- Design and conduct training course related to the implementation of monitoring, control and surveillance tools adopted by the Members.
- Conduct research and analysis activities and studies in the field of monitoring, control and surveillance to assist the IOTC Members and improve the IOTC monitoring, control and surveillance scheme.
- Utilizes best practices in fisheries MCS and fisheries policy and regulations.
- Implement programmes of work involving the development of approaches, evidence based strategies, and related tools, methodologies and the supporting system/database, monitoring and reporting frameworks.
- Conduct research and analysis activities and studies in the field of catch documentation scheme to assist the IOTC Members and improve the management of the tuna fisheries.
- Conduct research and analysis activities and studies in the field of vessel monitoring system to assist the IOTC Members and improve the management of the tuna fisheries.
- Conduct research and analysis activities and studies in the field of IUU fishing.
Fisheries policy and regulations
- Provide assistance to IOTC Members to transpose international instruments and IOTC Resolutions into domestic legislation.
- Provide technical and policy advice to IOTC Member countries in the development and implementation of their programmes (may include missions to IOTC member countries).
- Conduct and designs research and analysis activities to support the development of technical standards, international instruments, innovation, technical reports, publications and/or on-going programme development as well as the provision of technical and/or policy advisory services.
- Lead, coordinates, and/or participates in committees, project teams, and working groups, and/or provides technical leadership/secretariat services on technical networks and/or international technical policy and standard setting bodies.