The FRDC has an ongoing commitment to supporting the development of people across fishing and aquaculture. As the needs and demands of fishers and aquaculturists evolve, so will the need to invest in building capability and capacity to ensure their resilience and preparedness. The FRDC recognises that capacity will not always be equal among sectors, and will make sure it has an up-to-date understanding of each sector’s needs so it can target investment in the future.
Building capacity will be an area of increased focus over the life this R&D Plan. The FRDC will explore ways to invest in and manage adoption of R&D for stakeholders across fishing and aquaculture to:
- promote a globally oriented outlook,
- encourage a culture of transparency,
- support collaboration across sectors,
- provide skills and mindsets necessary to respond to this uncertain world.
Informed by stakeholder input, FRDC investments will focus on the skills required for success in a changing world. these are likely to include:
- digital and technological proficiency (e.g. the ability to use decision-support tools to increase profits, reduce costs and enhance environmental outcomes; R&D Plan Outcome 1),
- leadership and managing change (e.g. the willingness to implement best practice in workplace safety and culture, technology adoption, environmental stewardship and animal welfare; R&D Plan Outcomes 1, 2, 3),
- conflict resolution (e.g. the expertise to engage with opposing sides on resource access and allocation issues; R&D Plan Outcome 4),
- effective communication (e.g. the ability to convey clearly the integrity and transparency of supply chains, refine sector research and management needs, and tell the stories of seafood; R&D Plan Outcome 5).
- biosecurity (e.g. the capacity to take a proactive role in detecting, and managing biosecurity risks as part of day-to-day activities; R&D Plan Outcomes 1, 2, 5),
- environmental stewardship (e.g. the ability to identify, develop and adopt practices and technologies that sustain and enhance stocks and ecosystems; R&D Plan Outcomes 1, 2, 5).
Another priority of this R&D Plan is to increase the capacity of Australia’s fisheries research to benefit from collaboration.
THE FUTURE: Digital solutions to build capability
The world is ever-changing and those who will thrive are constantly upgrading their skills, knowledge and networks. Events including COVID-19 have changed the way people connect and organise themselves when they want to learn how to operate at greater scales, engage larger audiences and increase their impact. Online tools have the potential to expand existing approaches to build capability and capacity throughout fishing and aquaculture across Australia’s vast expanse.