This article presents a decision-making model based on situations that are typically encountered in fisheries management when setting the total allowable quota. The model allows assessing the differences in outcomes when different management institutions make the decision under uncertain conditions. Social preferences are considered to measure the social expected costs raised by different institutions. Moreover, stakeholder participation and the notion of “legitimacy cost” are taken into account, the latter being defined as the cost of actions that stakeholders may take when they do not agree with decisions made by the management authority. Within this context, economic policy choices are discussed in terms of what type of institutions will generate a higher expected welfare depending on social preferences and legitimacy costs in specific contexts. Finally, this article also discusses what aspects should be considered when designing stakeholder and scientific boards in the TAC setting process.
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