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2023 Spring Internship: Energy Resiliency for U.S. Commercial Fishing Fleet

National Working Waterfront Network and Urban Harbors Institute UMASS Boston
Job Field:
Job Type:
Seasonal, Temporary, Internship
Location Detail:
Job Description:

Gap Analysis and Policy Recommendations to Support Voluntary Emissions Reductions in the U.S. Commercial Fishing Fleet

- Shining Sea Fisheries Consulting LLC This project in coordination with the Fishery Friendly Climate Action campaign and Shining Sea Fisheries Consulting LLC focuses on energy resilience for the United State commercial fishing fleet. Diesel, the main fuel used for fishing vessels, is becoming more expensive due to global events and its emissions contribute to climate change. Exploring ways to reduce vessel diesel usage through energy conservation, efficient equipment, and alternative fuels can aid the commercial fishing fleet in energy efficiency and global efforts to combat climate change. Due to variations in fishing activity patterns, vessel size and configuration, and local cultural, economic, and regulatory conditions, there is no “one size fits all” solution that will work for the entire U.S. fishing fleet. To ensure solutions are feasible, flexible, and innovative requires leadership by the fishing industry and a more thorough knowledge of the issues, challenges, and opportunities for existing incentives programs.

Objective: The intern will assist in completing a gap analysis that will help answer the following questions: What kinds of emissions reduction innovations are most appropriate and of greatest interest to U.S. fishers, and how do they vary by fleet and geographical location? What barriers currently prevent broader deployment of these strategies, and what tools are needed to remove or overcome these barriers? What gaps exist in state and federal policy support for fishing fleet emissions reduction innovations, and how could new and expanded programs help fill these gaps and support innovation at scale? The intern duties include:

1. Work closely with project partners to design and conduct two sets of semi-structured interviews a. The first will target administrators of existing state/federal emissions reduction program; and will be designed to establish historical and baseline conditions of each program and explore issues/challenges with providing resources to fishermen for emissions reduction projects. b. The second will target members of the commercial fishing industry, and will be deployed via social media, fisheries associations, the Fishery Friendly Climate Action network*, and on-the-ground port visits. This questionnaire will focus on obtaining feedback regarding state and federal incentives programs; and input from the fleet on actions to reduce emissions and what program changes are needed to overcome barriers.

2. Analyze results from both sets of interviews

3. Produce a public-facing deliverable of their own choosing, such as a podcast, explainer video, or story map, which will be disseminated on the Fishery Friendly Climate Action website and Facebook page.

The intern will gain valuable experience designing and conducting semi-structured interviews, interview transcription coding, analyzing survey data, writing technical reports, and applied research work with stakeholders. This internship would be a valuable opportunity for a diversity of students: engineers interested in policy can explore programs that can make or break implementation of new technologies; social scientists can hone their skills and work within this difficult-to-access field; applied scientists studying oceans or fisheries can learn valuable methods in stakeholder engagement and make connections with the communities they will serve. All work for this internship can be done remotely. Depending on the intern’s location there may be opportunities to conduct in-person work, however this is not a requirement. A scope of work will be developed in collaboration with the intern, the host organization, and the student’s faculty advisor.

*The Fishery Friendly Climate Action campaign serves and engages commercial fishermen, fisheries associations, and seafood businesses from the Northeast, West Coast, and Alaska. Its mission is to provide these entities with tools, networking, access, and knowledge to advocate for robust climate solutions that work for U.S. fisheries and not at their expense.


All interns must possess excellent verbal and written communication skills, strong organizational and time management skills, ability to work effectively in both independent and team-based work environments, interest in community building and engagement, interest/experience with problem-solving oriented and applied research tools, willingness to learn from diverse audiences.


The National Working Waterfront Network (NWWN) and the Urban Harbors Institute (UHI) are pleased to announce an internship opportunity for a graduate student from an academic institution in the United States during the winter/spring of 2023. The internship will be coordinated and funded by the NWWN through a grant provided by the Walton Family Foundation. The student will be paid directly through the University of Massachusetts Boston. The internship project will be focused on applied research that advances the resiliency of commercial fishing communities in the context of working waterfronts. This internship will provide students with an opportunity to address the real-world needs of commercial fishing communities and work directly with a commercial fishing industry partner within a specific working waterfront region.

The intern will be compensated at the rate of $25/hour up to $3,000.
How to Apply:

Please submit the following materials to apply for a Spring 2023 NWWN Applied Research Internship: a) Resume (1-2 pages), b) Cover Letter/State of Interest (1 page), and c) Recommendation letter from your faculty advisor. Please combine all required materials into a single Microsoft Word document or PDF file.

Submission and Due Date Please send all application materials as an email attachment to Shannon Hogan, by 6 pm, Eastern Time on January 31, 2023. Write “2023 NWWN Internship Application” in the email subject line

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