Governance and Legal Frameworks

Summary of the sixteenth Meeting of The United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea: 6-10 April 2015

Diz D, Jonas H, Miller A. Summary of the sixteenth Meeting of The United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea: 6-10 April 2015 Chasek P. [Internet]. 2015 ;25(95). Available from: http://www.iisd.ca/oceans/icp16/
Freely available?: 
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Type: Newsletter

The sixteenth meeting of the United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (Consultative Process or ICP-16) convened from 6-10 April 2015 at UN Headquarters in New York. The meeting brought together representatives from governments, intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and academic institutions to examine this year’s topic: “oceans and sustainable development: integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development, namely, environmental, social and economic.”  

On Monday and Thursday, there was a general exchange of views in plenary. On Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning, delegates heard panel presentations and engaged in discussion on the first segment, “the environmental, social and economic dimensions of oceans and progress made in integrating the three dimensions, including an overview of activities and initiatives promoting their integration.” On Tuesday afternoon and all day Wednesday, delegates engaged with the second segment on: “opportunities for, and challenges to, the enhanced integration of the three dimensions of sustainable development in relation to oceans.”

On Thursday, delegates convened in plenary to discuss: inter-agency cooperation and coordination; process for the selection of topics and panelists so as to facilitate the work of the General Assembly; and issues that could benefit from attention in the future work of the General Assembly on oceans and the law of the sea. The Co-Chairs, Amb. Don MacKay (New Zealand) and Amb. Gustavo Meza-Cuadra (Peru), distributed a Co-Chairs’ summary of discussions on Friday morning. After all the paragraphs of the report had been reviewed, Co-Chair Meza-Cuadra gaveled the meeting to a close at 1:03 pm.

Protected Area Governance and Management

Worboys GL, Lockwood M, Kothari A, Feary S, Pulsford I eds. Protected Area Governance and Management. Canberra: ANU Press; 2015. Available from: http://press.anu.edu.au?p=312491
Freely available?: 
Yes
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No
Type: Report

Protected Area Governance and Management presents a compendium of original text, case studies and examples from across the world, by drawing on the literature, and on the knowledge and experience of those involved in protected areas. The book synthesises current knowledge and cutting-edge thinking from the diverse branches of practice and learning relevant to protected area governance and management. It is intended as an investment in the skills and competencies of people and consequently, the effective governance and management of protected areas for which they are responsible, now and into the future.

The global success of the protected area concept lies in its shared vision to protect natural and cultural heritage for the long term, and organisations such as International Union for the Conservation of Nature are a unifying force in this regard. Nonetheless, protected areas are a socio-political phenomenon and the ways that nations understand, govern and manage them is always open to contest and debate. The book aims to enlighten, educate and above all to challenge readers to think deeply about protected areas—their future and their past, as well as their present.

The book has been compiled by 169 authors and deals with all aspects of protected area governance and management. It provides information to support capacity development training of protected area field officers, managers in charge and executive level managers.

Institutional challenges for effective governance of consumptive wildlife tourism: case studies of marine angling tourism in Iceland and Norway

Solstrand M-V. Institutional challenges for effective governance of consumptive wildlife tourism: case studies of marine angling tourism in Iceland and Norway. Maritime Studies [Internet]. 2015 ;14(1). Available from: http://www.maritimestudiesjournal.com/content/14/1/4
Freely available?: 
Yes
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Type: Journal Article

Good governance of consumptive wildlife tourism, a complex socio-ecological system, requires finding the right balance between natural resource and tourism management. Fishing takes the lead globally as the most popular product offering within consumptive wildlife tourism, and both Iceland and Norway offer a marine angling tourism product. The two countries offer similar pristine Arctic fjord topography and similar fish species; but the management strategies are very different. Iceland’s management strategy for marine angling tourism prioritizes ecosystem-based management of the fish as a living resource, and requires a full accounting of all statistics related to marine angling tourists’ activities. Norway’s strategy relies on estimates of key statistics such as total seasonal catch, and the regulations put the burden of accountability primarily on the tourists. Using data from a multiple case study analysis of marine angling tourism in Iceland and Norway, the differences in governance inter-dynamics are examined using a theoretical model developed to analyse a complex socio-ecological system as an institution. This paper analyses how the differing management strategies influence institutional function, conflict creation and mitigation. Special focus is placed on the impacts of non-compliance by the tourists. This study demonstrates how such a model can serve as a tool to perform an analysis of a socio-ecological system in order to better understand institutional inter-dynamics, thereby assisting in the creation of a more effective governance strategy.

Steps toward a shared governance response for achieving Good Environmental Status in the Mediterranean Sea

Cinnirella S, Sardà R, de Vivero JLuis Suár, Brennan R, Barausse A, Icely J, Luisetti T, March D, Murciano C, Newton A, et al. Steps toward a shared governance response for achieving Good Environmental Status in the Mediterranean Sea. Ecology and Society [Internet]. 2014 ;19(4). Available from: http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol19/iss4/art47/
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Type: Journal Article

The Mediterranean region is of fundamental importance to Europe given its strategic position. The responsibility for its overall ecosystem integrity is shared by European Union Member States (EU-MS) and other Mediterranean countries. A juxtaposition of overlapping governance instruments occurred recently in the region, with the implementation of both the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) for EU-MS and the Ecosystem Approach Strategy (ECAP) for all Mediterranean countries, including EU-MS. Both MSFD and ECAP are structured around vision-driven processes to achieve Good Environmental Status and a Healthy Environment, respectively. These processes have clear ecosystem-based, integrated policy objectives to guarantee the preservation and integrity of Mediterranean marine ecosystem goods and services. However, adoption of these instruments, especially those related to the new EU-MS directives on marine policy, could result in a governance gap in addition to the well-known economic gap between the EU and the non-EU political blocs. We identify two complementary requirements for effective implementation of both MSFD and ECAP that could work together to reduce this gap, to ensure a better alignment between MSFD and ECAP and better planning for stakeholder engagement. These are key issues for the future success of these instruments in a Mediterranean region where discrepancies between societal and ecological objectives may pose a challenge to these processes.

Report on the Implementation of the National Ocean Policy

Anon. Report on the Implementation of the National Ocean Policy. Washington, D.C.: The White House; 2015 p. 95. Available from: https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2015/03/27/highlighting-our-national-ocean-policy
Freely available?: 
Yes
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Type: Report

Since President Obama created America’s first National Ocean Policy in 2010, Federal agencies have made tremendous progress to meet its objectives – working every day with communities across the Nation and stakeholders on the ground to improve the health of our oceans, support our economy, bolster safety and security, and better understand how our activities impact the ocean.

Today, we are releasing the first Report on the Implementation of the National Ocean Policy, which highlights the progress we’ve made since we released an action plan last year. From supporting the ocean economy to ensuring the security of our ports and waterways, and from improving coastal and ocean resilience to providing local communities with tools to plan for a better future, we’ve made tremendous strides in undertaking our role as responsible stewards of this Nation’s great oceans.

Among the activities described are a host of steps to promote sustainable energy development and aquaculture practices—including ensuring that permitting processes for these activities are efficient and streamlined as possible; advancing research and monitoring activities to help protect people and communities from harmful algal blooms;  developing data-driven tools to map the extent of sea-ice and to assist emergency responders and environmental resources managers in dealing with incidents in the Arctic region that may harm the environment; and issuing step-by-step guidance to help coastal communities asses vulnerabilities and develop plans to cope with the impacts of climate change, extreme weather, and ocean acidification.

Our oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes provide us with rich cultural, recreational, and commercial opportunities.  Collectively, these treasured waters support tens of millions of jobs and contribute trillions of dollars a year to the national economy. The actions underway across Federal agencies and in collaboration with states, regions, and communities will ensure that our oceans resources remain safe and healthy, and that our ocean economy continues to thrive for the benefit of all Americans.

Australia's Oceans Policy: Past, present and future

Vince J, Smith ADM, Sainsbury KJ, Cresswell IDavid, Smith DC, Haward M. Australia's Oceans Policy: Past, present and future. Marine Policy [Internet]. 2015 ;57:1 - 8. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308597X15000494
Freely available?: 
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Type: Journal Article

Australia has a large and diverse marine jurisdiction. A federal division of responsibilities matched with complex intergovernmental arrangements shapes management of this jurisdiction. This paper first outlines Australia׳s ocean governance arrangements and then reviews attempts to establish a national Australian Oceans Policy in the late 1990s. Notwithstanding attempts to implement an integrated policy framework across jurisdictions and sectors this ambitious policy framework has not met its original aspirations. However some new approaches have been introduced into a range of ocean sectors. The paper explores twenty plus years of oceans policy development and implementation and identifies key future challenges in implementing national oceans policy.

Organizational drivers that strengthen adaptive capacity in the coastal zone of Australia

Dutra LXC, Bustamante RH, Sporne I, van Putten I, Dichmont CM, Ligtermoet E, Sheaves M, Deng RA. Organizational drivers that strengthen adaptive capacity in the coastal zone of Australia. Ocean & Coastal Management [Internet]. 2015 ;109:64 - 76. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S096456911500054X
Freely available?: 
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Type: Journal Article

Governance has long been identified as a crucial part of solving environmental problems. Effective governance supports and encourages adaptive capacity to maintain or improve the conditions of socio-ecological systems. As coastal zones are among the most vulnerable systems to climate change impacts (e.g. sea-level rise), the adaptive capacity of coastal communities to climate change threats will be critical. Human populations will respond both directly and indirectly to these threats and impacts; for instance by adapting resource use and practices (e.g. changing fish targets). In this paper, we apply definitions of resilience, adaptive capacity and vulnerability to the coastal zone socio-ecological system. We focus on organizations and management aspects of governance in coastal Australia. Our approach combines a literature review that highlights key organizational drivers that supports adaptive capacity with interview data from senior resource managers from organizations from across Australia to test the validity of such drivers. The key drivers related to organizational and management issues that are required to build and strengthen the adaptive capacity of Australian coastal communities are: (a) Leadership; (b) Clear responsibilities and flexible organizational framework; (c) Effective integration of knowledge and insights; (d) Learning approach to natural resource management; and (e) Human capacity and coordinated participation in decision-making. Our study showed that natural resource management organizations are clearly concerned about future changes and uncertainties and recognize the need for cooperation and good organizational drivers. However, integration of knowledge and long-term planning to deal with predicted changes in climate is largely lacking; and mismatches between management, organizational and ecosystem boundaries and processes also exist.

International Ocean Governance Policy Brief

Anon. International Ocean Governance Policy Brief. World Ocean Council; 2014 p. 21. Available from: http://www.oceancouncil.org/site/business_forum/index.php?page=report
Freely available?: 
Yes
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Report

There are a range of legal instruments, institutions, and organizations that collectively establish rules and policies for managing, conserving, and using the ocean. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) provides the overarching legal framework for ocean governance and management on a global scale, but there are a number of other important ocean governance-related institutions, instruments and processes.

This document provides a brief overview of those institutions and processes that are most relevant to multi-sectoral business and industry interests, with a particular emphasis on opportunities for industry to get involved in the policy-making process. It does not include policies, institutions, and processes that are primarily relevant to a single sector. After first reviewing key aspects of UNCLOS, this document discusses other key ocean policy and governance processes and bodies. A glossary of terms is provided at the end of the document (items defined in the glossary are indicated in bold within the text). For reference, Table 1 provides a more inclusive list of ocean governance instruments, processes, and institutions and indicates which of these are covered in detail in this document.

Institutions and Co-Management in East African Inland and Malawi Fisheries: A Critical Perspective

Nunan F, Hara M, Onyango P. Institutions and Co-Management in East African Inland and Malawi Fisheries: A Critical Perspective. World Development [Internet]. 2015 ;70:203 - 214. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305750X15000108
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Journal Article

Institutions matter within natural resource management. While there are many examples of analyses of the nature and influence of institutions within fisheries, there are fewer examples of how institutions inform the practice and outcomes of co-management. This article reports on analysis of institutions and fisheries co-management in East African and Malawi inland fisheries informed by Critical Institutionalism. It concludes that relations between fisheries departments and local co-management structures, and between local government/traditional authorities and local co-management structures, and social, power, and gender relations within and beyond fisheries communities, particularly impact on the practice and outcomes of co-management.

Governance structures and sustainability in Indian Ocean sea cucumber fisheries

Eriksson H, Conand C, Lovatelli A, Muthiga NA, Purcell SW. Governance structures and sustainability in Indian Ocean sea cucumber fisheries. Marine Policy [Internet]. 2015 ;56:16 - 22. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308597X15000305
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Journal Article

Good governance is paramount to the sustainability of fisheries, and inclusiveness of stakeholder groups has become the centerpiece in the ethos of managing small-scale fisheries. Understanding the effect of governance network structures on fishery sustainability can help guide governance to achieve desired outcomes. Data on resource users, fishing methods, governance networks and classifications of stock health were compiled for 17 sea cucumber fisheries in the Indian Ocean. The subjective influence of the actors and the complexity of governance networks on the health of wild stocks were analyzed. The fisheries differed widely in their resource users, fishing methods and governance networks. Little correspondence was found between the number of nodes in the governance networks and the health (exploitation status) of wild stocks. Government entities dominated the networks but neither their relative influence in the networks nor their proportionate contribution to the number of entities in the networks greatly affected stock health. These findings do not refute the benefits of inclusive governance, but rather suggest that multiple other factors (e.g. inadequate regulations, weak enforcement, high number of fishers) are also likely to play a role in influencing sea cucumber fishery sustainability. These factors must be tackled in tandem with good governance.

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