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The Outlaw Ocean: Policy Practicum and Report

Introduction

Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing is a complex, systemic issue with impacts that resonate through global supply chains and can particularly harm those most vulnerable: the workers on fishing vessels. The millions of tons of fish stolen each year result in a huge loss to the economies of coastal nations and a threat to food security for the billion people who depend on fish for protein. Additionally, vessels that fish illegally often engage in labor abuses, including everything from substandard working conditions to modern slavery, prompting a human rights crisis.

Global seafood companies are mobilizing to remove illegal fishing practices from their supply chains. Similarly, labor rights organizations are investigating advanced technology tools and mechanisms that can enable them to eliminate labor abuses and forced labor on fishing vessels. Both actors face daunting challenges.

About the Course

The Outlaw Ocean Policy Practicum was born out of COS's work with the Friends of Ocean Action and the World Economic Forum on issues of illegal fishing and labor abuses in the seafood industry. Hosted by the COS and the Stanford Law School (SLS), Law & Policy Lab, this collaborative course represents an investment by COS and SLS in developing future ocean leaders. It brings together students from across Stanford University’s graduate and undergraduate programs to apply their multidisciplinary expertise in law, policy, ocean science, and management in a ten-week research experience.

The Outlaw Ocean Policy Practicum has been taught in Spring 2020 and Fall 2020. Both iterations of the course partnered with clients who work at different stages within and adjacent to seafood supply chains. The clients during the Spring 2020 course were Global Fishing Watch, COS, and the Stanford Center for Human Rights and International Justice. The clients in Fall 2020 were Global Fishing Watch and the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation.

Read about The Outlaw Ocean course in Spring 2020 >
Read about The Outlaw Ocean course in Fall 2020 >

About the Report

The Outlaw Ocean Report is the culminating product of each iteration of The Outlaw Ocean course. The papers contained in the reports  are the product of the students' work conducting background research, analyzing legal documents and international agreements, and interviewing a variety of experts  and actors who approach these issues from many different perspectives. The report and its contents will serve as an important tool and resource for the clients of The Outlaw Ocean course, as well as for future iterations of the policy practicum.

Read the news story on  the first Outlaw Ocean Report >
Read the news story on the second Outlaw Ocean Report >

 

     

 

Report Contents

The Outlaw Ocean Report: An Exploration of Policy Solutions to Address Illegal Fishing and Forced Labor in the Seafood Industry || Spring 2020

Full Report

The Outlaw Ocean: An Exploration of Policy Solutions to Address Illegal Fishing and Forced Labor in the Seafood Industry

Report by Section

Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing

Forced Labor

​Supplemental Research

Appendices

The Outlaw Ocean Report: Business and Technology Solutions that Address Illegal Fishing and Labor Abuses in Seafood Supply Chains || Fall 2020

Full Report

The Outlaw Ocean: Business and Technology Solutions that Address Illegal Fishing and Labor Abuses in Seafood Supply Chains

Report by Section

Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing: A Risk Assessment Tool

Labor Abuses in Seafood Supply Chains

Appendices

More Information

Learn more about our work addressing illegal fishing and labor abuses in the seafood industry >