An integrated monitoring framework for the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Hedge, P., Molloy, F., Sweatman, H., Hayes, K.R., Dambacher, J.M. , Chandler, J., Bax, N., Gooch, M., Anthony, K., and Elliot, B. (2017) An integrated monitoring framework for the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Marine Policy, 77. pp. 90-96.

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Abstract

Monitoring provides important feedback on how social and environmental systems are tracking and whether or not human activities, including management activities, are having an impact. This paper describes an approach applied to develop an integrated monitoring framework to inform adaptive management of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, a complex, multi-jurisdictional, multi-sectoral marine system of international importance. It identifies the gaps and opportunities to integrate the existing long-term, short-term and compliance-related monitoring and reporting initiatives to provide the information for more effective and efficient (adaptive) management of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. And as importantly it aligns expectations among different agencies about how monitoring will inform management. Fifty two high priority values, processes and pressures for management were identified along with 65 existing monitoring programs. Developing the monitoring framework was useful in several ways. First it brought together scientists, policy-makers, managers, and other interested stakeholders with different agendas, philosophies and incentives and established a common purpose, lexicon and language for an integrated monitoring program. Second, it highlighted the importance and usefulness of qualitative conceptual models as a framework for focused discussion around a set of hypotheses with relevance for management. Third, the process started an important conversation about defining and setting a realistic number of monitoring priorities for management. Finally, it has provided direction for how to build on existing initiatives to develop an integrated monitoring program for a globally significant world heritage area.

Item ID: 46755
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1872-9460
Keywords: adaptive management; environmental monitoring; decision-making; coral reef; marine reserve
Funders: Australian Government
Projects and Grants: Sustainable Regional Development Program
Date Deposited: 13 Jan 2017 04:23
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050209 Natural Resource Management @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9606 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation > 960604 Environmental Management Systems @ 20%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 40%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960501 Ecosystem Assessment and Management at Regional or Larger Scales @ 40%
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