Adaptive management of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and World Heritage Area provide an example of the development of an adaptive system of science-based coastal management. The direct focus of management and clearest jurisdictional authority concerns the area seaward of the low water mark on the coast. However management depends on engagement with people in and beyond coastal areas who use, or whose activities and behaviours have impacts on the Great Barrier Reef region. Section 7 (1) (b) of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act 1975 establishes as a function of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority 'to carry out, by itself or in co-operation with other institutions and persons, and to arrange for any other institutions or persons to carry out, research and investigations relevant to the Marine Park'. Experience of implementation over 35 years reflects a dynamic approach to collection and use of an increasing breadth of information. This has involved development of multidisciplinary research, community consultation and engagement, monitoring, review and periodic systematic revision to reflect experience and new information (Lawrence et al. 2002; Kenchington and Day 2011).