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Capacity Building

by Portal Web Editor last modified Jan 10, 2013 12:09 PM

Themes in Coastal Habitats: Capacity Building




Inadequate capacity to practice integrated coastal management (ICM) and to design and implement strategies that lead to more sustainable forms of coastal development is the primary factor limiting progress in ICM. This weakness is apparent in both developed and developing nations. Building partner capacity is therefore central to the work of the Coastal Resources Management Program (CRMP).



A CRMP staff member trains local teachers for exploring the Blongko marine sanctuary in North Sulawesi, Indonesia.

Capacity building requires more than human development through education and training -- it requires institutional development and development of enabling frameworks. The gap in institutional capacity is a primary reason for CRMP's incremental approach to making good ICM practices an operational reality in the nations where we operate. A central goal of all CRMP activities is to build and strengthen the capacity of individuals and institutions to successfully lead, catalyze and support coastal management efforts.

CRMP's primary approach to building human capacity is through "learning by doing." In-country work is largely implemented by host country nationals through in-country staff, consultants, working groups and other partners who, working with CRMP staff and consultants, undertake project activities and develop products that advance the country's ICM initiatives. In-country ICM practitioner capacity is also strengthened by building national, regional and international networks of ICM practitioners that actively share experience through annual retreats, e-mail listservers, newsletters (e.g.,  InterCoast, Pwani Yetu)[91a], and project journals. Multi-partner workshops and conferences are occasionally convened to address special topics.

CRMP also builds capacity through education and training. In 1995, CRMP convened a conference in Rhode Island entitled Educating Coastal Managers. This conference identified and described approaches to building human capacity and defined the knowledge, skills and attitudes most critical for managers engaged in ICM. CRMP conducts several types of training -- international short courses, regional courses and in-country courses for coastal management practitioners, government officials and decisionmakers, universities, local communities and other stakeholders. Over the course of the last 16 years, CRMP has helped raise the skills of men and women from 68 countries worldwide. The bi-annual Summer Institute in Coastal Management has been ongoing since 1992, and regional training programs with local universities have been offered in Thailand, Ecuador and the Philippines. The curriculum varies with participant needs, is experiential in approach, and draws heavily from CRMP's field repertoire of experience. Many of the individuals trained in the Summer Institute now play an important role in ICM national and local programs around the globe.




[CHECK PHOTO] Participants in the bi-annual Summer Institute in Coastal Management at the University of Rhode Island


The recently completed Learning & Performing course implemented in the Western Indian Ocean region piloted a module-based approach to short-term training. The regional course was conducted in partnership with the Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA). Through this work, a self-assessment tool to assess individual capacity in coastal management was developed. The tool is organized around four areas of competence -- technical competence, professional skills, management skills, and knowledge of ICM tools and approaches.

CRMP also works to raise knowledge, awareness and support for ICM with major stakeholder groups. It does this through active media programs both in key countries and in the U.S.




RESOURCES:Capacity Building



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