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This is a multi-fleet, multispecies, bio-economic simulation and optimisation model to evaluate, management strategies. This model can be used to simulate different spatial management plans and, to analyse the influence of future development of wind farms and Natura 2000 sites. Species and fisheries of focus are the mixed flatfish fisheries targeting plaice and sole and the fisheries for brown, shrimp.

Dec 13
Application in MSP: 
Unknown effect
Type of Issue: 
Coexistence of uses
Type of practice: 
Stage of MSP cycle: 
Vision and aims
Analyse spatial aspects
Cross-border / trans-national aspect: 
Coherence with other processes: 
Common Fisheries Policy
Habitats and Birds Directive

Questions this practice may help answer

  • How would different spatial management options and prices impact fisheries revenues at segment resolution?
  • How do the Natura 2000 sites affect the European fisheries?
  • Does the economic crisis impact the European fishing sector?

  • Will fishing still be a viable economic activity in the future? 

Implementation Context

This tool has been presented and tested in the context of the COEXIST project, which ran from 2010 to 2013. It provides a comprehensive assessment of the conflicts and synergies between fisheries, aquaculture and other activities in the coastal zone in six COEXIST case study areas.

The FISHRENT tool is evaluated in the “Guidance of Better Integration of Aquaculture, Fisheries, and other Activities in the Coastal Zone” and is presented in the Deliverable D3.3 “Coastal fisheries fleet model - FishRent” of the COEXIST project. 

Aspects / Objectives

The aim of the FISHRENT tool is to simulate fisherman behaviour and to predict future costs and earning in the fishing fleets. It allows COEXIST partners to use the adapted FishRent model to facilitate policy making. 


The FISHRENT tool is a multi- fleet, multispecies, bio-economic simulation and optimisation model to evaluate management strategies. It simulates values of biological and economic variables and shows explicitly the consequences of different policy decisions like for example: spatial closure and/or price variations (fuel, fish). The model generates basic economic indicators like gross value added, net profits. The model generates also a variety of other outputs, e.g. size of stocks and fleets, production, costs, catches and landings. The model is currently in development in several EU projects including COEXIST and VECTORS.

The model comprises six modules, each focussing on a different aspect of the functioning of the fisheries system: biology (stocks), economy (costs, earnings and profits), policy (TACs, effort and access fees), behaviour (investments), prices (fish and fuel) and an interface linking the modules together. Input, calculation and output are clearly separated. The model produces a standard set of graphics, which provide a quick insight into the results of any model run 

Main Outputs / Results

Once the model has run, the Result tabs provide a set of figures produced automatically on the website.
The website gives access to the set of pictures as result

 The graphs produced allow the exploration of a set of time series of basic indicators:

-  Biomass of each species for each scenario
-  Stock productivity (or growth) of each species for each scenario
-  TAC or sustainable catch of each species for each scenario
-  Landings of each species for each scenario
-  Revenue of each fleet segment for each scenario
-  Gross value added of each fleet segment for each scenario
-  Profit of each fleet segment for each scenario
-  Effort of each fleet segment for each scenario
-  Number of vessels in each fleet segment for each scenario 


The Guidance of Better Integration of Aquaculture, Fisheries, and other Activities in the Coastal Zone and the Deliverable 3.3 both present the FishRent  spatial management tool and this introduction to and evaluation of this tool is therefore highly transferable. Thanks to this document, each stakeholder is able to judge if this tool could be relevant in his specific case.

Contact Person

Heleen Bartelings



Responsible Entity


Costs / Funding Source

Costs: unknown

Funding Source: European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7 2007-2013)