The EfD Sustainable Management of Coastal Marine Resources (CMaR) Collaborative Program is now in its second phase that will continue until 2024. Lead by EfD Central America, this collaborative team contributes to the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14, which is dedicated to life under water and aims to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas, and marine resources for sustainable development.

The second phase of the CMaR Program (2021-2024) focuses on a socio-ecological perspective on coastal areas, strengthened south-south collaboration, and impactful research to encourage policies benefiting the most vulnerable people in coastal communities. The CMaR Program involves researchers from different countries and regions – Chile, China, Central America, India, South Africa, Tanzania, and Vietnam.

The first phase of CMaR

During 2018-2020, the collaborative program supported the in-depth analysis of plastic pollution, which has gained growing attention over the last years and particularly its effect on marine wildlife, economic activity, and human health.

The collaborative program developed an impact pathway framework to trace the flow of plastics through the socio-ecological system, identifying the role of specific policy instruments in achieving behavioral changes to reduce marine plastic waste. We produced a toolbox for finding a policy that is suitable for different countries. We used the impact pathway and toolbox to make country-specific recommendations that reflect the reality in each of the selected countries.  

We also studied fisheries management via a low-cost rapid data collection method called fisheries performance indicators (FPI). Results from this work confirmed that open access and poor governance are fundamental problems to sustainable fisheries. More importantly, our results also indicate that restricting free entry can improve fisheries from ecological, economic, and social perspectives. The developed world’s focus on institutions and rights-based catch share programs to improve fisheries is a cumbersome and slow process that is not within near reach for many developing countries.  

A second phase to develop further research

In this second phase, we undertake research to support evidence-based decision-making to reduce the complex problem of plastic pollution.

The problem of plastic pollution in the ocean needs to be tackled on land and is related both to excessive plastic inputs into consumption, and, most importantly for developing countries, to inadequate management of solid waste in general.

The lack of insufficient information on plastic waste is an aspect we are approaching, including information on the welfare implications of plastic pollution on vulnerable groups of society that depend on small-scale fishing, and small-scale tourism. The inclusion of the gender perspective is imperative.

Besides waste management, we work on three other relevant topics:

  • Two-way welfare effects of coastal human-environment interaction, namely the effect of human activity on the environment and the welfare losses associated with environmental degradation with particular attention to gender effects and poverty.
  • Assessing policies, programs, and instruments to achieve more sustainable coastal social and ecological sytems (SES) in villages in the development world.
  • Empowering stakeholders to take action.

We focus on a narrower geographical dimension, having coastal regions at the heart of the problem.

It is relevant to highlight how the South-South collaboration fostered by the program has served as a mechanism to validate and improve our ideas and develop interdisciplinary approaches to multi-faceted problems from researchers with great experience.

For further information, please contact the analytical coordination team: 

Updated: 13 October 2021