Resource User Perceptions of Marine Governance and Coral Reef Management in the Bay Islands, Honduras
AuthorsTurner, R,; Fitzsimmons, C,; Forster, J,; Mahon, R,; Peterson, A,; Stead, S.
Caribbean people rely heavily on coral reefs, which contribute billions of dollars each year through tourism, fisheries and the provision of coastal defence. Coral reefs are being damaged by activities such as unsustainable fishing and pollution, and face an uncertain future with global climate change. Effective management of reefs is critical for the economies of many Caribbean countries and the well-being of reef resource users. Implementing marine resource management to promote coral reef ecosystem health requires an understanding of the governance systems that influence the success or failure of particular reef management tools. The Future of Reefs in a Changing Environment (FORCE) project investigates the relationship between governance arrangements and the success of reef management, and the implications of this relationship for both reef-dependent livelihoods and reef ecological health. The FORCE project is conducting social science research across five countries in the Caribbean, and the results from Honduras are presented. Interviews with community members, marine managers and policy makers were conducted in three communities in the Bay Islands to investigate perceptions of marine governance and reef health, and the constraints to implementing marine management measures. Results will be used to formulate recommendations for coral reef managers and policy makers regarding the management practices that they can choose to implement within the governance constraints in operation for their particular situation.