A Guide to Evaluating Marine Spatial Plans

Welcome to the web pages on Evaluating Marine Spatial Plans developed through a partnership among UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC), Green Fire Productions, and OpenChannels. These pages briefly summarize the key points made in the 2014 UNESCO guide to Evaluating Marine Spatial Plans, whose full-length PDF version is available here or via the OpenChannels Literature Library. For more information on UNESCO’s marine spatial planning program, click here.

The publication of the guide and the development of this website are intended to help the marine community develop plans that achieve their goals. This involves building plans with outcomes that are measurable, including specification of SMART objectives, related management actions, indicators and targets. These elements must be built early into the marine spatial planning (MSP) process, not as an afterthought.

Over the past decade, nearly 100 marine plans have been developed in over 40 countries worldwide. In 10 of these countries the plans have been approved, and a few have already been adapted based on results of a first round of MSP. The new UNESCO guide is based on good practice of performance monitoring and evaluation from these early results of MSP. It also draws from experience gained in other marine and terrestrial planning and management.

The developers of these web pages hope that marine planners around the world — who together are building the rapidly evolving field of MSP — will benefit from the ideas about performance monitoring and evaluation outlined in the following pages.

These web pages were made possible through grants to the three partners from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

Continue reading Welcome and Introduction