Ocean Career: OAI Economist

Ocean Associates Inc. (OAI) is seeking applicants for a full-time Economist position to support the NOAA/NMFS Office of International Affairs, Trade, and Commerce (IATC).

OAI is a Virginia corporation established in 2003 that provides consulting and technical services to the U.S. government, non-governmental organizations, international organizations, and the private sector. We specialize in scientific program and project management, strategic planning, professional and technical services, stakeholder engagement, supporting government contracts.


The IATC intends to augment its economic analysis capabilities to inform regulatory actions and policymaking to implement the Port State Measures Agreement, the Seafood Import Monitoring Program, the Seafood Inspection Program, and other office priorities. IATC is primarily seeking support from an economist with qualifications and experience in economic analysis for the purpose of regulatory impact review, impacts on small businesses, and related rule making requirements. Secondarily, IATC is seeking economic analysis expertise, as needed, related to analyzing trends in fish trade, U.S. seafood competitiveness, and illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing and estimating the costs and benefits of related regulatory actions. OIA is seeking applicants with a minimum of 3 years of experience providing economic analysis in the areas of expertise listed above primarily focused on regulatory economic analysis; particular experience in analyzing seafood trade, seafood competitiveness, or IUU fishing is desirable.

IATC engages other countries bilaterally and through various multilateral international fisheries organizations to promote sustainable management of global fisheries resources in a manner consistent with U.S. domestic fisheries policy and competitiveness for U.S. fishermen and seafood producers. IATC has a broad mission in the areas of policy, regulation, seafood safety, and trade. Many IATC priorities relate to combating IUU fishing, which significantly undermines U.S. and global efforts to sustainably manage fisheries and conserve marine resources.


Research the volume and value of U.S. imports of seafood products that may be produced by IUU fishing activity and from fisheries with excessive bycatch of protected resources. Evaluate the impacts of regulatory programs that implement record keeping and reporting requirements for supply chain traceability. Assess the supply chain responses to import restrictions imposed on specific foreign fisheries including price effects and substitution costs. Evaluate the long-term benefits of reducing the global impacts of IUU fishing, eliminating forced labor, and conserving biodiversity. Estimate the economic costs final rule of forced labor in the global seafood supply chain and the impact of trade restrictions on abusive labor practices. Analyze seafood markets, trade flows, and commerce to inform analyses related to trade monitoring and policy activities and the operations of the Seafood Inspection Program.


  • Revisions as needed for Regulatory Impact Review and Regulatory Flexibility Analysis of Port State Measures Agreement
  • Regulatory Impact Review and Regulatory Flexibility Analysis of Seafood Import Monitoring Program proposed rule and final rule
  • Regulatory Impact Review and Regulatory Flexibility Analysis of Seafood Inspection Program regulations update
  • Identification of the industrial classification sectors for workers affected by IATC rules addressing issues in seafood inspection and fish trade, including a summary of prevailing wage rates to be used in the analysis of time and cost burdens imposed on affected stakeholders.
  • Summary of published research on estimating the magnitude of IUU fishing and associated social costs. Recommendations for analytical approaches to estimate IUU fishing and the benefits of rules that counter IUU fishing.
  • Summary of published research on estimating the prevalence of forced labor in the fishing industry and supply chain, and the associated social costs of unfair labor practices. Recommendations for analytical approaches to estimate the benefits of rules that counter forced labor in the fishing industry.
  • Research and recommendations for estimating the costs of IATC reporting and record keeping requirements for entities engaged in the seafood supply chain.
  • Market analysis on the seafood industry to support trade and commerce priorities and the operations of the Seafood Inspection Program.

Learn more about this opportunity and how to apply.

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