Common-property fishing is a classic example of the tragedy of the commons. Driven by competition, rational fishermen are forced to overfish to maintain marketplace viability. This shortsighted strategy will lead to the depletion of the common resource pool, and ultimately the destruction of the local fishing industry. In this paper, we present a dynamic differential system of a finite-resource fishing pool to model choices faced by average fishermen. We show that the situation mirrors a Prisonor’s Dilemma on the short- and long-terms, where overfishing is always the dominant Nash equilibrium strategy. Additionally, we use the model to analyze a multitude of policy measures to address the problem, and qualify their impact depending on how governments approach burden distribution.
"Overfishing: Economic Policies in Finite Resource Biological Pools,"
Undergraduate Economic Review: Vol. 9
, Article 9.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.iwu.edu/uer/vol9/iss1/9