The Fishing Industry Request Scientific Support

The fishing industry have been responding to the Fisheries Industry Science Partnership (FISP) Network with their ideas for research projects that fulfil the criteria of Defra’s £10 million Fisheries Industry Science Partnership (FISP) scheme. The Network, on behalf of the industry, is now asking for the scientific community’s support to help develop these ideas further.   

The FISP scheme was set up to fund fisheries and aquaculture research that is collaborative across stakeholder groups (industry, government and academia). The FISP scheme and FISP Network both recognise that industry, academia and government all have unique contributions to make to fisheries research, and that closer partnerships will increase capacity to close key knowledge gaps required for fisheries management.  

In response to the FISP scheme, a coalition of three charities developed the FISP Network with the objective to support the voice of the industry and grow partnership working. By coordinating and disseminating information between industry and academia, the Network hopes to identify studies that are a priority for the fishing industry but that also meet the research needs of government and address major issues that are pertinent to fisheries management objectives.

The FISP scheme is scheduled to open during the week of 28th February 2022.

For further information on the projects proposed by industry and to learn how you might support the development of these scientific studies, please contact the Fishing Animateurs.

What is the FISP grant scheme?

The Fisheries Industry Science Partnership (FISP) scheme seeks to:

  • improve data collection, particularly for data limited species;
  • enhance knowledge of technical measures including fishing gear selectivity, and/or;
  • build a better understanding of the ecosystem benefits and environmental impacts of aquaculture.

Projects can apply for funding to develop a research study (i.e., Part A of the FISP scheme) or fully developed scientific proposals can apply under Part B of the FISP scheme. Grants of up to £20,000 are available to develop research proposals. Contracts of up to £300,000 are available to carry out a full research project.

More information about the FISP scheme can be found on the government website:

What does the Network do?

The FISP Network is a competitive process managed by Defra. The FISP Network does not have any influence over the grants awarded or any formal relationship with Defra, The Marine Management Organisation or any other body. The purpose of the FISP Network is to support the voice of the industry and grow partnership working. We are comprised of:

The Fishing Animateurs identify and collate industry-driven ideas, connect industry with academic institutes, and help to write grant application bids.

Fishing into the Future can help to develop the ideas further by supporting stakeholder relationships and facilitating knowledge sharing between industry, science and government.

The Fishmongers’ Company’s Fisheries Charitable Trust offers matched-funding for bids nurtured through the FISP network and approved under the FISP scheme. 

Who are the FISP Network?

The Fishing Animateurs

The Fishing Animateurs help the fishing industry through the government grant system. Their service is free of charge and is aimed primarily at supporting the small-scale coastal fleet. 

Lead Contact: Imogen Smith-Devey, Fishing Animateur 

Imogen has been an animateur for the small-scale fishing fleet since 2020. In this time, she has supported hundreds of industry members gain access to funding. She believes in industry-led action and can help bring projects to life. 

Fishmongers’ Company’ Fisheries’ Charitable Trust (FCFCT)

The Company’s Fisheries Charitable Trust supports a wide range of projects, grants and convening to build and safeguard a prosperous and sustainable fishing and aquaculture industry. The Company’s Fish & Fisheries Team work in collaboration with industry, government, academia, non-governmental and third sector organisations, while engaging across the breadth of the UK fisheries sector. 

Lead Contact: Alison Freeman, Programme Manager 

Alison Freeman manages the Company’s inshore fisheries programmes. She helped to set up the Company’s COVID-19 ‘Rapid Response Grant Programme’ and the Master Fishmonger Standard. She advocates community-led, regional fisheries management through a number of developing initiatives. 

Fishing into the Future

Fishing into the Future is a UK-wide charity that was set-up and is guided by fishermen. They support people in the fishing industry to engage with fisheries science, management and sustainable business practices. They bring fishermen, scientists and fisheries managers together to share knowledge, strengthen relationships and build confidence in order to achieve effective dialogue, collaboration and mutual understanding. 

Lead Contact: Emma Plotnek, Executive Director 

Emma Plotnek joined Fishing into the Future in September 2020 after spending almost a decade working in the Chilean fishing sector. Since joining FITF, Emma has been working to understand the needs of industry and improve knowledge sharing between industry government, and the scientific community. 

Who should I contact?

For further information or to tell us about your idea and/or study, please contact the Fishing Animateurs on:

Call: 01736 362782 or 07534580450 to leave a message about your project idea. 
Text: 07534580450 with your name, project theme and size of vessel.
Email: [email protected]