news INITIATIVE: Strong human networks for effective Marine Protected Areas in the Mediterranean website

MedPAN, Port-Cros National Park, Brijuni National Park, Zakynthos National Park, Portofino MPA, Torre del Cerrano MPA, Torre Guaceto MPA, Strunjan Park, INCA, Marilles Foundation


When they are effectively managed, Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are
one of the most effective tools for the conservation of marine
biodiversity. But to perform, Mediterranean MPAs need more human
capacity, skills and financial resources. Over the years, MPA
practionners have come to realise that working together would help
address some of the challenges they face and MPA managers networks such
as MedPAN have emerged and developed. The MPA NETWORKS project intends
to boost this dynamics with the strengthening of MPA managers networks
at all levels in the Mediterranean. The expected result? MPAs are
empowered to serve their purpose and deliver the results that will
benefit nature and sustain our livelihoods.

The MPA NETWORKS project will focus on providing sustainable
solutions to challenges requiring an approach that goes beyond MPA
boundaries. These challenges include the global question of management
effectiveness, and more specifically the management of Small Scale
Fisheries in MPAs, the conservation of mobile species and the
development of sustainable financing mechanisms for MPAs.

Several types of activities will be led from November 2019 to April
2022 with a cross-cutting approach to use and apply methodologies and
tools developed during previous projects (Programme Med and others).
This scaling up will be supported by networks of actors sharing the same
interests at different levels (thematic groups, national or
supra-national alliances, Mediterranean cooperation):

  • Nine pilot projects in 7 countries will be designed and implemented to address aspects of the challenges described above.
  • Lessons learned and tools to support management will be shared among the Mediterranean community of MPA managers. 
  • These
    experiences will also feed a permanent Mediterranean training programme
    that was recently developed and that will be further matured in
    relations to the themes of the MPA NETWORKS project. 
  • Specific networking activities between MPAs will as well be organised for direct peer-to peer support. 
  • On
    a wider level, national or supranational networks of MPA Managers will
    be supported to build strong alliances of sites sharing similar
  • To build synergies, cooperation between networks will also be set-up, in the Mediterranean and beyond. 
  • The
    3rd edition of the Mediterranean MPA Forum will be organised in 2020.
    This process, that takes place every 4 years, will craft the post 2020
    roadmap for MPA efficiency. 
  • An experience sharing workshop for
    MPA managers will also be organised in 2021 to explore the challenges of
    management effectiveness. 
  • And finally, the joined forces of
    these networks will give rise to a coordinated MPA voice with shared
    recommendations to support pro-MPA policy-making at international,
    Mediterranean and national levels.

Geographical coverage
  • Mediterranean (widespread)
Intended Users
  • Administrations/Authorities
  • Organisations/Associations
  • Policy-makers/managers/planners
  • Researchers and scientists
Source of funding
  • EU Funds
  • Public funding
  • Private funding
  • Biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Education/training networks & jobs
  • Fisheries/Marine resources
  • Public private funding
  • Scientific research / technologies / innovation
  • Spatial planning/areas management
Country of project partners
  • Albania
  • Croatia (Hrvatska)
  • France
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Slovenia
  • Spain