Natural resource and conservation practitioners are increasingly realizing the importance of having networks of locally managed marine areas (LMMAs). These are areas of ocean managed by local, coastal communities for the protection of fisheries, culture, and biodiversity and have proven effective in reducing local conflicts over fisheries, conserving marine biodiversity and improving catches. Globally, there are number of marine area networks each encompassing a diversity of approaches to coastal management and governance. What is common to LMMA’s, however, is the shared involvement of coastal communities in marine and fisheries management.
The LMMA Network is a is a group of practitioners involved in various community-based marine conservation projects around the globe who have joined together to learn how to improve their management efforts and spans the people and cultures of Southeast Asia, Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia and the Americas. One of the primary goals of the LMMA Network is to learn under what conditions using an LMMA strategy works, doesn’t work, and why.
We are working with the LMMA Network to better understand how learning networks evolve and adapt to changing knowledge and attitudes via adaptive policy-making. Jeremiah Osborne-Gowey, a PhD student working with Bruce Goldstein, is the primary lab member working with the LMMA Network. Vicki Goldstein, Executive Director of the Colorado Ocean Coalition, is an associate on this project.