Analysis and visualization of VMS and EU logbook data using the VMS Tools R Package

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General information

The objective of the course is to provide instruction in the use of the VMS tools software package for the simultaneous analysis of VMS and logbook data. Emphasis will be placed on exploring the spatial distribution of fisheries, and the behaviour of fishers at sea.

Students will be guided through the entire process of obtaining  and cleaning VMS and logbook data, making plots & tables, shapefiles and combining the datasets to enable more advanced analyses such as dispatching the landings at higher spatio-temporal resolutions (than is available in the logbook data), calculating indicators (e.g. area of seabed fished) and linking VMS and logbook data to other spatial data in order to calculate potential impact of area closures on fishing fleets. Instruction will also be given in how to use VMS tools to work with uncertainty in VMS analyses.

Learning outcome:

By the end of the course, the participants will be able to:

  • Clean VMS and Logbook data
  • Analyse fishing behaviour and apply gridding methods to map fishing activity
  • Link VMS and logbook data and dispatch landings to the ping scale of VMS
  • Calculate the economic impact of area closures
  • Calculate indicators relevant for the MSFD, including uncertainty in the indicators
  • Link VMS data to habitat maps and other spatial datasets.
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Venue: International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES)
Copenhagen, Denmark

ICES Secretariat
H. C. Andersens Boulevard 44-46
DK 1553 Copenhagen V, Denmark
Tel: +45 3338 6700 · Fax: +45 3393 4215 ·


Click here to apply:


750 Euros for ICES member country affiliated participants.

1.250 Euros for non-member country affiliated participants.


The course will be targeted at those with already some experience of VMS and logbook data, their analysis and mapping.  Computer programming experience will be helpful and some knowledge of R is essential.  We believe that the course would also benefit those currently analysing VMS data using GIS, since the combination of VMS tools and GIS can improve standardisation of analytical protocols.

Application Procedure:

Please use the on-line registration form

Application Deadline: 7 April 2015


Academic level: Master, PhD, Lifelong Learning
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