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Web Ecology An open-access peer-reviewed journal
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Volume 8, issue 1
Web Ecol., 8, 1–13, 2008
© Author(s) 2008. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Web Ecol., 8, 1–13, 2008
© Author(s) 2008. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  13 Mar 2008

13 Mar 2008

What do we call Adaptive Management? A general characterization from a global sample

T. Espigares, N. Zafra-Calvo, and M. Á. Rodríguez T. Espigares et al.
  • Dept. of Ecology, Univ. of Alcalá, 28871, Alcalá de Henares, Spain

Abstract. This study presents a characterisation of the implementation of Adaptive Management (AM) from the analysis of 35 projects around the world. Our results reveal that AM projects are usually aimed at ecosystem management, conservation and restoration. Also, they mainly act upon forest or epicontinental water ecosystems and their goal is generally species exploitation and in most cases these projects act at a local scale. From a methodological point of view, most AM cases use an active approach and monitoring programs and were at the phase of problem identification. We found differences in the implementation of AM between developed and developing countries that were present in our samples in the following way: AM projects in developed countries were typically carried out by state agencies, and focused on solving problems concerning epicontinental waters and the public use of ecosystems. They had the support of national funds and used modelling techniques. In contrast, the AM projects from developing countries were mainly aimed at the conservation of natural protected areas and at the mitigation of environmental impacts derived from mining activities. The financial support of these projects was frequently provided by international organizations, and the use of modelling techniques was uncommon. For a better exploitation of all the possibilities of AM, we suggest the use of criteria to be customized to the specific needs of the socio-economic reality of every country and to monitor the results at a global scale to continuously improve this practice.

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