Knowledge exchange and policy influence in a marine resource governance network

Weiss, Kristen, Hamann, Mark, Kinney, Michael, and Marsh, Helene (2012) Knowledge exchange and policy influence in a marine resource governance network. Global Environmental Change, 22 (1). pp. 178-188.

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Few case studies have considered the impact of network structure on the resilience of complex resource management systems that operate over large spatial scales. To help fill this knowledge gap our study examined two types of relational ties-knowledge exchange and policy influence-within a marine wildlife co-management network in Northern Australia. We conducted interviews and follow-up surveys with key-informant stakeholders in dugong and marine turtle management and used these data to perform social network analysis for the dugong and turtle co-management network. The network structure of this marine governance system supports extensive cross-scale information flow, but with a disproportionate amount of top-down policy influence compared with knowledge accumulation, an arrangement that may hinder evidence-based decision making. We developed a typological 'map' of stakeholder roles in the network to characterize each stakeholder's contribution of knowledge and ability to influence policy, helping to identify gaps or overlaps in network linkages. Improving communication links between knowledge producers and policy makers is important for evidence based decision making throughout the management network, while addressing overlapping management roles and functions should help decrease conflict in the system. These improvements would increase social-ecological resilience in the management network by providing better protection for marine species while meeting the needs of diverse stakeholders.

Item ID: 22595
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0959-3780
Keywords: natural resource management, social networks, social-ecological resilience, co-management, cross-scale, resource governance, marine wildlife
Date Deposited: 01 Aug 2012 09:27
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960802 Coastal and Estuarine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 100%
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