In Norway, the number of fatalities among fishers in the small-scale fleet (SSF) is about five times larger than in the larger coastal vessels and nearly 20 times larger than in the deep sea fishing vessels. The main reason for fatalities involves drowning after vessel disasters, but man-overboard events and drowning in port are also relevant causes. Although there is a need to re-enforce the “safety culture” in this segment, there is a scope to utilize latest developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and service-design thinking with the ambition of creating a safer and healthier environment in the Norwegian jigging fleet, of lowering its ecological footprint, and improving the product quality and economic return to the fishery and coastal society. AFO-JIGG will explore this along two integrated lines of investigation. One line will perform a work (boat and human) and product (fish) flow analysis, to evaluate what operations can be optimized from a human and fish welfare perspective, and what operations can be autonomised or optimized to ensure delivery of a high quality product in a sustainable way. The other line of research will look at the competences of the present work force, skills required in the future and the acceptance by fishers and society at large of the new technology. Automatisation of certain tasks, including navigation and fish handling, may raise legal and ethical issues that must be taken into consideration at early stages of development. AFO-JIGG integrates interdisciplinary insight from environmental, technological, social, and ethical perspectives. The emphasis on the SSF of northern Norway attempts to mitigate the general lack of R,D&I in this sector and builds on the consensual political support for this fleet. At a time when the maritime industry is facing a technological revolution with the introduction of autonomous vessels and services, there is a window of opportunity to improve and modernize conditions in the jigging fleet.
Project leader: Melania Borit
Institution: FAKULTET FOR BIOVITENSKAP, FISKERI OG ØKONOMI