This was created in partnership with Environment for Development .
We develop a decision making model based on constraints that are typically encountered in fisheries management when setting the total allowable quota. The model allows us to assess the differences in outcomes when the decision is made by different management institutions under uncertain conditions. We consider social preferences under uncertain stock conditions and measure the social expected costs raised by different institutions. We take into account stakeholder participation and we include the notion of “legitimacy cost” as the actions stakeholders may take when they do not recognize decisions made by the authority as the right decisions. 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. We also discuss what aspects should be considered when designing stakeholder and scientific boards in the total allowable catch (TAC) setting process.