The Networks Twinning of the Ocean Governance project is laying the groundwork for establishing a prominent presence at the upcoming IMPAC5 Congress. In all, the Twinning partners have submitted 3 proposals together for the organisation of Knowledge Sharing sessions. Another great example of the positive collaboration that has been established between us.

The 3 proposals presented were the following: “Long-Term Sustainability: Networks of MPA Managers Making the Difference”; “Resilient MPA Networks: Networks of MPA Managers Making the Difference”; and “MPA Management Effectiveness: Networks of Marine Protected Areas Managers Making the Difference”. On these proposals, Ms. Puri Canals, coordinator of the twinning and of the Ocean Governance Project itself, noted: “we really pushed to show the diversity of institutions and geographic origins that composes our twinning”.

The sessions proposed by the twinning project primarily aim to explore innovation and transformational change. Specifically, the session on ‘Long-term Sustainability’ will focus closely on sharing experiences of maintaining institutional financial coordination among and within the networks, as well as the need to consider long-term financing plans. The session aims at providing an opportunity to disseminate resources which would support planning for sustainability.

The second session, ‘Resilient MPA Networks’, will focus on the need to incorporate elements of resilience into the planning of MPA networks. We talk here about climate change, restoring damaged and degraded ecosystems, and implementing management strategies to build more resilient ecosystems. Participants will learn about successful solutions, and share information on the materials and resources used.

The final session, ’MPA Management Effectiveness’ will look at the targets established in CBD (such as 30×30) and the UN SDGs. We will explore how having an MPA is not sufficient to ensure an improvement in the protection of habitats and species living in these sites: these areas need effective management, budget, and enough resources to ensure success. In this session we will also work on the monitoring of progress, and the assessment methodologies shared among the MPA networks.

IMPAC5 will take place on 2-8 September 2021, and the agenda (and, by extension, whether our proposals have been selected) will be tentatively known during Spring 2022. This event will also represent an opportunity for many of us to finally meet in person after 2 years, and to join other parallel meetings where we will discuss further possible exchanges.

We hope we can all meet there for these 3 sessions and many more!