A new Implementation and Governance Plan for the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN) has been drawn up, utilising recommendations from a GCRMN meeting held in Townsville, Australia, on 23rd May 2017, and built up through extensive consultations through 2018 with ICRI and GCRMN members. Two GCRMN working group meetings (April 2018 and September 2018) focused on ensuring the Implementation and Governance Plan will meet the needs of GCRMN participants and ICRI members, and the final plan was adopted during the 33rd General Meeting of ICRI, 5-7 December 2018 in Monaco (it is available for download here).
The plan establishes new operational practices for the GCRMN, including strengthening the role and importance of the regions in coordinating and organising the aggregation and reporting of data, outlining procedures for ensuring data quality in the provision of key indicators from varied but comparable methods, and governance of the GCRMN under the umbrella through a Steering Committee including members of ICRI and chaired by a host institution.
The first host institution for the new Implementation and Governance Plan is the Australian Institute of Marine Science, as part of Australia’s commitment to the ICRI Secretariat in 2019-2020 alongside co-chairs Monaco and Indonesia.
A separate Technical Guidance addressing details of monitoring data, quality and methods was also prepared as a ‘living document’ to accompany the Implementation and Governance Plan. This Technical Guidance will be updated and improved through consultation with GCRMN regions and participants over time.