Trends of the Large Marine Ecosystem assessment and management approach as reflected in the literature
The advancement and expansion of a scientific field depends on its ability to organize its findings and establish a basis in the professional literature. In late 2015, a review was undertaken to examine the body of literature regarding the Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) of the world. Trends in the literature were studied to explore this approach as a means for implementing ecosystem-based management of coastal and marine resources, with the objective of providing guidance for filling gaps in the scientific literature supporting this concept. Since 1995, there has been an increase in the number of peer-reviewed, scientific journal articles related to the LME approach, termed “LME articles.” Based on this review, we observed that between 1983 and early 2016, 392 LME journal articles were published. In the examined literature, there is a strong focus on fisheries and fisheries-related considerations and concerns, with 59% of the most relevant journal articles focused on fish or fisheries. Future publications should draw on the experience of past and current LME projects to inform and provide tools for future projects to address the socioeconomic aspects of implementing ecosystem-based management. This review also highlights a connection between investments in LME projects by the Global Environment Facility and the amount of corresponding publications regarding the supported LMEs.