The Network of Managers of Marine Protected Areas in the Mediterranean
The lack of coordination and common strategic policy regarding management issues in the Marine Protected Areas of the Mediterranean has led to the creation of a social scientific network i.e the Network of Marine Protected Areas in the Mediterranean Sea (MedPAN). This Network is a legally independent N.G.O., which has been first created in 1990 and was reactivated in 2008 in response to the demand of the Mediterranean MPA managers. The fifty three (53) MedPAN members (NMPZ is among the founding ones) and twenty seven (27) partners, representing 18 Mediterranean countries, share common initiatives across the Mediterranean Sea for an Ecological Network of MPAs and perform concrete actions in the framework of International (e.g. CBD - Rio 1992) and European (e.g. Barcelona Convention and its 1995 BD/SPA Protocole, ACCOBAMS – 1991, Natura 2000, Action Plan for Biodiversity, Marine Directive, CFP) Legislation and Policies in order to reinforce the management of existing MPAs based on a bottom up approach.
The MedPAN network has developed an MPA Database with different sets of information concerning geographical, hydromorphological, biological, ecological, sociological and economic characteristics of the MPAs in the Mediterranean. An important activity of the network is the production of different status reports concerning various issues of the MPAs, while there is a continuous support of the MPA managers through organization of Training Workshops, facilitation of exchanges, provision of small grants for monitoring issues in MPAs. Finally there is a significant role of the network on issues related to public awareness through its website (www.medpan.org, e-bulletin, etc), while a continuous exchange of knowledge with other ecological and conservation networks in all over the world is promoted.