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Steepness defines the degree of dependence of average recruitment on spawning biomass. Quantitatively, steepness is the proportion of equilibrium unexploited recruitment produced by 20% of unexploited spawning stock size. A steepness value of 1.0 basically means that there is no relationship between spawning stock biomass and future recruitment, while a value of 0.2 means that there is a linear relationship between spawning stock and recruitment.

See also Stock recruitment relationship