Achieving comprehensive integrated ocean management requires normative, applied, and empirical integration

Publication Name

One Earth


Our oceans, and the communities that rely on them, are facing diverse, interconnected, and cumulative threats, such as large-scale industrialization, climate change, and pollution. Integrated ocean management (IOM) is a governance approach that is designed to address these threats in a coordinated way while ensuring equitable distribution of resources and a reduction in conflict between invested parties. There are, however, a confusing and often competing array of different approaches to IOM, which can inhibit the success of its application and undermine sustainability efforts. Here, we propose an NAE (normative, applied, and empirical) conceptual model and demonstrate the utility of this approach as a tool through which to categorize the many different IOM frameworks. In doing so, we identify that most IOM frameworks provide for insufficient integration across one or more focus areas. By identifying these gaps, we provide a means through which future ocean governance can support more comprehensive integration.

Open Access Status

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Funding Sponsor

University of Wollongong



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