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Article

Marine Protected Areas Management in the Mediterranean Sea—The Case of Croatia

1
Faculty of Marine and Environmental Sciences, University of Cadiz, 11510 Puerto Real, Spain
2
Department of Marine Studies, University of Split, 21000 Split, Croatia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Michael Wink and Charalampos Dimitriadis
Diversity 2022, 14(6), 448; https://doi.org/10.3390/d14060448
Received: 12 May 2022 / Revised: 30 May 2022 / Accepted: 31 May 2022 / Published: 2 June 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystems Management)
Marine protected areas (MPAs) are widely used tools to conserve marine ecosystems and their services. They are complex socio-ecological systems where human activities and nature interact. Croatia has 409 protected areas, of which 19 are coastal-marine. The aim of this paper is to analyze the management model of MPAs in Croatia and to identify their strengths and weaknesses. For this purpose, three MPAs have been chosen: Brijuni National Park, Telašćica Nature Park, and Pakleni Islands Significant Landscape. The methodology used assesses 26 specific indicators to analyze the status of 4 key factors: management body, planning subprocess, public participation, and implementation subprocess. The results of this evaluation are 5 possible scenarios: proactive (1), learning (2), interactive (3), centralized (4), and formal (5) management. The results show that Brijuni presents a proactive scenario (1), Telašćica an interactive scenario (3), and Pakleni Islands a centralized scenario (4). A series of measures are presented, which can improve the score. In general, MPA management in Croatia tends towards a proactive model, where the management body is its greatest strength. There is a shift from a top-down to a bottom-up approach, which implies a greater involvement of the population in decision-making. However, public participation is not yet fully consolidated. View Full-Text
Keywords: assessment; Croatia; management; marine protected area; public participation assessment; Croatia; management; marine protected area; public participation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Maestro, M.; Chica-Ruiz, J.A.; Popović Perković, Z.; Pérez-Cayeiro, M.L. Marine Protected Areas Management in the Mediterranean Sea—The Case of Croatia. Diversity 2022, 14, 448. https://doi.org/10.3390/d14060448

AMA Style

Maestro M, Chica-Ruiz JA, Popović Perković Z, Pérez-Cayeiro ML. Marine Protected Areas Management in the Mediterranean Sea—The Case of Croatia. Diversity. 2022; 14(6):448. https://doi.org/10.3390/d14060448

Chicago/Turabian Style

Maestro, María, Juan Adolfo Chica-Ruiz, Zvjezdana Popović Perković, and María Luisa Pérez-Cayeiro. 2022. "Marine Protected Areas Management in the Mediterranean Sea—The Case of Croatia" Diversity 14, no. 6: 448. https://doi.org/10.3390/d14060448

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