Marine fishery is a complex commercial activity. It is not exclusively subject to biota and abiota impacts, but also to different biotechnological, technical, economic, legislative and other factors that have to be taken into consideration regarding sustainable exploit of renewable marine resources. Fishes and other marine organisms, as objects of catch, are the main concern of Marine Fishery. These renewable marine resources could be very soon impoverished and devastated as result of over catch and catch of immature individuals. Fishery development is conditioned by biomass size intended for catch and allowed level of its exploit, while the development of aquaculture is conditioned predominantly by adequacy of area for fish (shell) farming.
Because of all the above stated, for realisation of sustainable exploit and protection of the renewable marine resources through catch activities, farming, preservation, processing and fish (and other sea organisms) market, it is necessary to educate personnel needed for successful performance of marine fishery. The trained personnel should study at University of Split, Graduate Study of Marine Fishery, which is the only graduate study specialized in education of personnel according to maritime orientation of the Republic of Croatia.
Main purpose of Marine Fishery study is a systematic education of personnel for work in area of fishery, which includes a wide range of biological investigations from diversity of marine organisms to their distribution, characteristics, mutual relations and interactions with marine environment. Further on, special attention is paid to fishery problematic issues such as fishery biology, exploitation, and protection of renewable marine resources, use of fishing gears, vessels, fishery ports, fish and other organisms’ farming, technology of fish processing, fish market and commercial organisation of marine fishery. Students graduating at this study are rare not only in the Republic of Croatia, but in the Europe as well. The possibilities of their employment are wide: in the State Administration offices, Biros, Town and District Administration bodies in charge of fishery problems, Chamber of Trade, inspection authorities, companies engaged in fish catch, farming, processing and fish market. There are also possibilities of working in scientific or scientific - educational institutions.
A need for such specialised personnel will strongly emerge with organising of Coastal Guards and consequently with joining of Croatia to the European Union. The fact that the studies, which educate specialised personnel in Marine Fishery are rare in the Europe, points out to high purpose-serving of such studies regarding the labour market needs.
Marine Fishery as theoretical and applied science includes recent problems in the field of sea biology, use of fishing gears, sustainable exploit and protection of marine living organisms, fishing vessels, fishing ports, aquaculture, fish processing technology, preservation of sea food products, fish market, maritime- fishery laws, economy and organisation of sea fishery.
Marine Fishery studies include obliged and optional subjects mainly from biotechnology, natural and biomedical sciences.
While preparing the degree programme of Marine Fisheries we have analysed similar studies in the world and compared it to our study programme. Due to fact that there are not many of these university programmes in the whole world, we have analysed the programs that were available to us, such as: two Fishery Studies in Poland, 1) Faculty of Marine Fishery and Food technology of Agricultural Academy in Sczecin, (Wydzial Rybolowstwa Morskiego i Technologii Zywnosci Akademii Rolniczej Sczcecin) and 2) Marine Fishery Faculty, University of “Varmia and Mazuri” in Olsztyn (Wzdyal Rybolowstwa i Ochrony Srodowiska Uniwersytetu Warmia i Mazury, Olsztyn). We have also analysed the following study programs: Department of Fisheries and Marine Biology, University of Bergen, Norway; International Centre for Aquaculture, Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures, Auburn University, Alabama, U.S.A. and School of Ocean Science, University of Bangor, Wales, U.K.