Katharina Jantzen 2009-08
Report of GLOMAR PhD student Katharina Jantzen about her research stay at the Old Dominion University in Norflok, Virginia, USA, from 23. August - 19 September 2009
The 12th North Atlantic Fisheries History Conference organized by the North Atlantic Fisheries History Association (NAFHA) took place in Norfolk VA, USA, at the Old Dominion University (ODU) from August 19th to 22nd 2009. Thanks to the financial support of GLOMAR I had the opportunity to take part in this conference and to work at the History Department of Old Dominion University afterwards from mid August 2009 until mid September 2009.
This year’s NAFHA conference had been another highlight in the history of NAFHA. Scholars from nine different countries on both sides of the North Atlantic Ocean participated in the conference, discussing highly relevant topics concerning the history of the North Atlantic fisheries, such as changes in politics, resource management, and cultural aspects. Seven separated sessions were related to the special theme of the conference: Fisheries Management in a Historical Perspective. Researchers at all levels – graduate students to senior scientists – and all disciplines with special focus to maritime history were able to exchange opinions and to establish new cooperative research projects. My contribution to the conference was a talk entitled ‘The evolution of incentive-based quota management in North Atlantic cod fisheries’. This talk was embedded in session I: The ‘science’ of fisheries management. There I had the opportunity to discuss my results with leading scholars in maritime history and science, e.g. Sidney Holt, David Starkey, Bjørn-Petter Finstad and Jahn Petter Johnson. Besides scientific exchange with researchers dealing with fisheries past and present worldwide, the program included social events where the participants had the chance to interact at a more personal level. We visited the United States Coast Guard and the Mariners’ Museum where several presentations pointed out their importance and linkages to fisheries research. Participating in this conference has enlarged and tightened my personal network of fisheries historians. Discussions with internationally known scholars have provided new ideas and motivation for my own research.
After this marvelous conference, I worked at the Department of History at Old Dominion University as a visiting researcher for one month. ODU offers more than 23,000 students over 70 bachelor’s, 60 master’s, and 36 doctoral degree programs. The university has a beautiful campus and provides modern technical equipment for all students and faculty members. The tremendous library provides access to all important journals I needed for doing research.
The Department of History is one of ODU’s excellent faculties and one of the very few departments in the US focusing on maritime history. The main reason for my research stay at this department was to meet my main supervisor, Ingo Heidbrink, who has left Germany in January 2008 to work as a maritime historian and expert in the history of fishing conflicts in the North Atlantic at the Department of History. Having a thesis committee meeting in Norfolk was a fruitful experience. We discussed the progress of my work and, at the same time, I had the opportunity to learn about a foreign institute’s system.
During my research stay, I also got the possibility to get in contact with other scholars working maritime related, both, in the historic and economic field. Faculty researchers of ODU have created a Consortium for Maritime Research (CMR). This consortium intends to pool researchers working on issues concerning the maritime. I met Maura Hametz, the head of CMR, discussing maritime research from the view of a historian. Additionally, I talked to economist Wayne Talley and learned about his outstanding education program providing world quality maritime, ports and logistics management education of the Maritime Institute. Additionally, I got to know PhD students from the Graduate Program in International Studies (GPIS), directed by Regina Karp. I got insights into the framework of an American graduate program, based on different rules and funding systems, and met interesting people from all over the world.
Attending the NAFHA conference and spending my research stay at the Old Dominion University was very interesting and valuable for my own work and future development. I recommend everyone to do a research stay abroad.