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Social-Ecological Systems Meta-Analysis Database: Variables

Variable TypeCategorical
Variable Component TypeGovernance System
Variable KindComponent
ThemeInstitutions (learn about themes)
QuestionIn practice, what is the main management goal of the MPA?
Select OptionsBiodiversity conservation, Fisheries improvement, Species of conservation concern, Protection of migratory species, Exclusion of a specific threat, Social goals, Other
ImportanceOn paper MPAs have multiple goals, but in practice there tends to be one goal that receives more management attention.

A goal is a statement of what the MPA is ultimately trying to achieve. Although multiple goals may be formally stated (e.g. in the management plan), in terms of day-to-day management of the MPA, which goal receives the most attention/is the main focus of management?

  • Biodiversity conservation: protection of biodiversity, endemism, and/or unique features
  • Fisheries improvement: biomass enhancement
  • Species of conservation concern: including threatened and endangered species (IUCN category Vulnerable, or higher)
  • Protection of one or more migratory species
  • Exclusion of a specific threat: e.g., oil and gas
  • Social goals: e.g. preserving local traditions, and places considered sacred to local groups
SectorsMarine protected areas

Theory Usages

TheoryValue Used

Associated Studies

Study Citation

Component Usages

ComponentValue UsedExplanation
GBR Marine Park Act 1975-1999["Biodiversity conservation"]
GBR Marine Park Act 2004-current["Biodiversity conservation"]
Marine Areas for Responsible Fishing (AMPRs) Costa Rica["", "Fisheries improvement", "Social goals"]Community empowerment and inclusion in fisheries management, stabilize fish stocks. Development of alternative livelihoods such as aquaculture and tourism beyond fishing.
Wakatobi National Park 2008-current["Biodiversity conservation", "Other"]Reflects influence and agenda of conservation-focused NGOs (TNC/WWF). Also a large focus is economic development (through tourism) - focus of Wakatobi District Government, which reflects the need for local administrations to achieve greater financial self-sufficiency in the current era of decentralised government within Indonesia (Clifton 2013)
NWHI Monument Act 2006["Biodiversity conservation", "Species of conservation concern", "Protection of migratory species", "Exclusion of a specific threat", "Social goals"]
Raja Ampat Governance System["Biodiversity conservation", "Social goals"]Main aim of MPAs was to support local food security and traditional rights
Joint Sanctuary Management Governance System ["Biodiversity conservation", "Exclusion of a specific threat"]Exclude oil drilling, protect critical ecosystems
Svalbard Environmental Protection Act[""]The Reserves are designed to protect a large, continuous, and mainly undisturbed wilderness area with intact biotypes, ecosystems, and species (Sysselmannen på Svalbard 2013b ). They also aim to protect nesting sites for seabirds, walrus haul-outs, and polar bear habitat.
Seaflower MPA Act 2005["Biodiversity conservation", "Fisheries improvement", "Social goals"]MPA objectives include: 1) Preservation, recovery and long- term maintenance of species, biodiversity, ecosystems, and other natural values including special habitats; 2) Promotion of sound management practices to ensure long-term sustainable use of coastal and marine resources; 3) Equitable distribution of economic and social benefits to enhance local development; 4) Protection of the rights pertaining to historical use; and 5) Education to promote stewardship and community involvement in planning and management (Howard et al. 2005).
Galapagos Governance System 1998-current["Biodiversity conservation"]The park was also created to ensure the sustainable use of natural resources by local residents - and this is more of a focus in the 2nd management plan
Macquarie Island Marine Park Management Plan["Biodiversity conservation"]Biodiversity conservation is the main goal of this management plan; although it does include consideration of threat reduction and protection of migratory species.
GABMP (Commonwealth Waters) Plan of Management 2000 - 2005 and Management Plan 2005 - 2012["Species of conservation concern", "Protection of migratory species"]The MMPZ of the GABMP (CW) was implemented to protect important calving grounds of the Endangered southern right whale along with the Australian sea lion, which is listed as Vulnerable. In this zone vessel traffic is prohibited during southern right whale calving, from May 1 - October 31. Recreatioinal activities and commercial fishing is permitted in this zone during the remainder of the year but demersal trawling and mining activities (including exploration activities) are not. The BPZ of the GABMP (CW) was implemented to protect a sample of the unique benthic flora and fauna and sediments that are found in the GAB region. Even though this is an aim of the management plan, mining activities (including exploration activities) are permitted in this zone. The management plan for the GABMP (CW) indicates that activities in this zone will be considered on a case by case basis and stringent conditions will be imposed, by which companies must demonstrate that their activities will not compromise or threaten the conservation values being protected in the GABMP (CW). Currently there are 5 exploration acreages located around or in the BPZ of the GABMP (CW) and drilling of exploration wells is planned to start in 2017. This may impact the biodiversity of the benthic flora and fauna and acoustic disturbance generated from seismic exploration may impact cetaceans in the GABMP (CW).
Heard and McDonald Islands Marine Reserve Management Plan["Biodiversity conservation"]The MPA proposal (2005) defines the main purposes of the MPA to: 1) protect conservation values of Heard Island and McDonald Islands, the territorial sea and the adjacent Exclusive Economic Zone (HIMI EEZ) including: the World Heritage and cultural values of the Territory of Heard Island and McDonald Islands; the unique features of the benthic and pelagic environments; representative portions of the different marine habitat types; and marine areas used by land-based marine predators for local foraging activities. 2) provide an effective conservation framework which will contribute to the integrated and ecologically sustainable management of the HIMI region as a whole; 3) provide a scientific reference area for the study of ecosystem function within the HIMI region; and 4) add representative examples of the HIMI EEZ to the National Representative System of Marine Protected Areas.
Heard Island and McDonald Islands Fishery Management PlanNot Applicable
Cenderwasih governance system[]NP Mission: •Strengthen the management of the region to ensure the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystems •Strengthen protection, law enforcement and rehabilitation efforts preservation of biodiversity and ecosystem resources •Develop optimal utilization for the development of education, research, science, nature tourism and farming to support sustainable use for the improvement of the welfare of the community around the area. •Develop institutional systems and conservation partnerships in the management
Caeté-Taperaçú Extractive Reserve (RESEX) in Brazil["", "Biodiversity conservation", "Fisheries improvement", "Social goals"]
Self.organized rules and norms for SCUBA diving["", "Biodiversity conservation", "Social goals"]