Human Dimensions of Large Marine Protected Areas
This project is being undertaken with collaborators at Colorado State University, Duke University, and the University of Guelph. We are broadly interested in the human dimensions of large marine protected areas (LMPAs): an emerging trend in oceans conservation. The social, cultural, political, and economic impacts of LMPAs are understudied and often overlooked, given the remote offshore spaces these protected areas generally encompass. However, rather than "unpeopled" offshore spaces, we are showing that human uses, values, institutions, and other sociopolitical dimensions are critical components of LMPAs, their development, and their success.
The project examines five case studies of existing, emerging, or stalled LMPA initiatives: a stalled attempt to designate an LMPA in Bermuda (Bermuda Blue Halo Initiative); an LMPA proposal in Rapa Nui (Easter Island, Chile); a recently declared LMPA in Palau (Palau National Marine Sanctuary); an LMPAs in Kiribati (the Phoenix Islands Protected Area); and an LMPA in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands and Guam (the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument).
My work has focused on the case of Palau as well as our cross-case analyses.
Publications on LMPAs
Gruby, RL, Fairbanks, L, Acton, L, Artis, E, Campbell, LM, Gray, NJ, Mitchell, L, Zigler, SBJ, Wilson, K. 2017. Conceptualizing social outcomes of large marine protected areas. Coastal Management. 45 (6): 416-435. [Open Access Link]
See our article in The Conversation summarizing and discussing some of our work. For more information, including video interviews with some of our informants, visit our project website! (exit to humansandlargempas.com)