Scale mismatches in socio-­‐ecological systems: Implementing marine reserve networks in the Philippines

posted Apr 3, 2017, 1:09 AM by Abigail Melendres   [ updated Apr 3, 2017, 1:09 AM ]
Vera Horigue, PhD
James Cook University

Scholars and development groups have advocated for the establishment of marine reserve networks, because they are known and, in some cases, empirically proven to provide greater ecological, social and economic benefits compared to individual reserves. However, as in the case of individual reserves, marine reserve networks have to be well-designed and well-managed in order to provide more benefits. Still, implementing  optimal marine reserve network designs is much more difficult in certain governance contexts, because ecological and governance  scales are rarely congruent. Institutional arrangements that can and address scale mismatches between ecological and social systems will then be required, to provide for implementation of marine reserve networks that can span multiple governance units, or be scaled up to higher governance levels.

In this seminar, I will discuss how scale  mismatches and the varying scales of planning and management can influence effectiveness of marine reserves. Specifically in this talk, I will discuss:

a.) What is a "a scale mismatch"? And, why is it important to consider  when planning and establishing  marine reserve networks?
b.) What are the options available to resolve scale mismatches in order to implement marine reserve networks?

c).) What are the current practices in the Philippines, and the challenges experienced in relation to design and network governance?

Various approaches and collaborative efforts are required in order to diagnose and resolve scale mismatches. This includes combining modelling and empirical research, and collaborations across different disciplines (i.e. biological, physical and social sciences).