Cod is an important species from commercial point of view for several different interest groups in a society. It is also important for the whole eco system in terms of the food web. For instance, healthy cod stocks reduce problems with eutrophication.
We will to conduct a large study about different interest groups´ preferences for improving situation for coastal cod stocks in Western Sweden. The different interest groups included in our study are policy makers, commercial fishers, recreational anglers, and common citizens. The method we use is choice experiment and we are asking all the respondents to answer both as private persons and as policy makers. By that way we can capture both the private and social preferences for the improvement of all the respondents.
This is of interest since many people have an attitude of distrust towards politicians and administrators (bureaucrats) responsible for public policy. This could be especially relevant for interest groups as commercial and recreational fishers. Part of this distrust could be related to uncertainty about whether administrators serve their own self-interest or act in the interest of the public. Another explanation for this distrust is that politicians and administrators are considered to be distanced from people in general, creating policies and making decisions that are not in line with the desires of citizens. (However, it can be argued that certain policies in fact should be paternalistic and to some extent ignore the preference of the general public). Overall, very little attention has so far been given to how the policy recommendations of those who work with policy and management of the environment relate to citizens, but also special interest groups´ preferences.
Theme 1: Individual behaviour, cooperation and trust.