Fishers - strategies and choices: feasibility study

This social research publication explores what influences the decision making of Scottish fishers. It presents findings from twelve interviews with fishers. The main findings are focused on the social, economic, governance, and environmental drivers in fishers’ decision making.

Annex 6: Pilot study plan

How interviews were conducted (e.g. recorded/noted, face to face/phone)?

People were offered their preferred method of meeting, either in-person, online or by phone. All respondents asked to use WhatsApp video as their preferred method. All conversations were recorded using the voice memos facility. The interviews were at a time convenient to the respondent which varied from day time to evening interviews.

Who was taking interviews?

The interviews were carried a researcher employed by Aquatera using the interviews guide to have a structured discussion with the fishers.

How were interviews analysed?

A combination of background data and qualitative data was obtained from interviews. For background data, information on years of experience in the fishing industry (only 6 respondents answered), catching sector, target species, vessel size, fishing duration and range of gear types used was analysed and graphically presented in bar charts in the main text of the report, highlighting the difference between capture sectors. The analysis of the qualitative data was carried out using thematic analysis. Thematic analysis is a qualitative method that involves identifying patterns in qualitative data. Interview transcripts were manually coded to identify common themes and patterns in fishers’ responses. The coded data was then interrogated to identify key trends based on the frequency and importance assigned by fishers. The codes were then collated and sorted into key themes. These themes were reviewed to ensure they were accurate and representative of the interview transcripts. Each theme is presented in the main body of the report alongside explanation of their importance and influence on fishers’ decisions. These descriptions are supported by representative quotes to illustrate the themes.

Anonymity of research participants.

Only information that cannot identify individual people is resented in the report. For example, there are two tables in the report that mention which gear participants use and where they are located. These two types of information are not cross-linked to make sure that participant anonymity is protected.

How were interviews carried out? What methodological choices were made?

The interviews were conducted using the interview guide to ensure consistency of questions. Interviewer strived to carry out interviews in informal conversation style to allow fishers explore topics that were interested to them. The level of detail given in the answers varied. Interviewer encouraged research participants to elaborate on their responses. Interviews were recorded to ensure accuracy of the reporting. In general fishers were very pleased to participate and expressed interest in participating should this pilot research result in a full-scale study.



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