Selected and managed effectively, regional networks of marine protected areas (MPAs) have the potential to be important strategies for conserving representative samples of global biodiversity and migratory species, and for the development of trans-national experience in resource management and conservation. This paper reviews current and proposed regional networks of MPAs, and describes the process of establishing an MPA network in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden Region as a case study. Critical to the success of this network will be the implementation of a common, regionally agreed management framework, and the development of the necessary technical capacity and expertise in the planning and management of MPAs (currently lacking in several countries represented in the Network). This case study addresses the regional management framework, the mechanisms proposed to coordinate management of the participating MPAs, the mechanisms for strengthening regional capacity, and the potential constraints to achieving the objectives and goals of the network.
Ocean and Coastal Management Vol. 46, Issue 8, p. 741-761