Fish, farms, and shared futures: Defining public perceptions of land-based aquaculture to support sustainable decision-making

Lead PI: Laura Rickard

Co-PI: Dr. Bridie McGreavy, Dr. Branden Johnson

Abstract:The main objectives of this project were:

Objective 1: Understand how support for, and/or opposition to, the present and/or planned siting of land-based recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) facilities is represented in public discourse in various spatially distributed U.S. communities. Methods included conducting in-depth interviews with key stakeholders (N= 71) in a four such communities.

Objective 2: Understand how individuals’ cognitive, emotional, and social linkages to specific places, as well as their beliefs about the nature of these places and the naturalness of RAS facilities and operations, may motivate acceptance of and/or opposition to RAS facility siting. The key method was conducting a mail survey (N = 523) in three of the case study communities to obtain quantitative estimates of key study variables (e.g., sense of place, perceived naturalness of aquaculture, support for RAS facility siting).

Objective 3: Understand how an expanded notion of trust may explain individuals’ acceptance of, and/or opposition to, RAS facility siting. This objective also relied on the mail survey to examine, in the context of RAS: (1) a multi-criteria measurement of trust; (2) the applicability of the trust, confidence, and cooperation (TCC) model in a novel context.

Project Website:

Project Dates: 9/1/2019 – 8/31/2022

Project Funding: NOAA