Capacity building for local coastal managers: a participatory approach for Integrated Coastal and Marine Zones Management in Uruguay

Published in Revista de Gestão Costeira Integrada, v. 13(4):445-456

Echevarría, L., Gómez, A., Piriz, C., Quintas, C., Tejera, R. and Conde, D.

Publication year 2013
  • Centro de Manejo Costero Integrado del Cono Sur. Espacio Interdisciplinario Universidad de la Republica. Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Programa ECOPLATA. Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Centro de Manejo Costero Integrado del Cono Sur Centro Universitario Regional Este Espacio Interdisciplinario Universidad de la Republica. Montevideo, Uruguay


IAI Program


IAI Project CRN3038


In this paper we present a capacity building experience for local coastal managers in Uruguay which was designed to promote interactions between relevant institutions and stakeholders. The objective was to increase local stakeholders&rsquo knowledge of coastal zone problems and of the implications of adaptive, integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) for informed decision making. The course, which was offered to stakeholders at different levels of the governance network, was designed to increase the capacity of participants to understand the reality of Uruguay´s coastal zone, meet development challenges, evaluate the need for action to prevent or remedy these challenges, as well as to achieve changes in attitude which are necessary for sustainable communities. Through participating in the course, stakeholders gained the capacity to promote interactions between state interests, government and their own communities since they live in connection with the occupations and dynamism of the zone. ICZM training is the basis for natural resource protection and for improving the quality of life of coastal dwellers. Not only did technicians and local leaders receive training, a regional network of local knowledge and experience in comprehensive ICZM was also created, which has the potential to capitalize on the natural resources found in each area. In addition, the course generated continued commitment to coastal areas management and networking, and promoted new synergies. The link between local managers and academia which was created during this shared educational experience is of fundamental importance for advancing ICZM in Uruguay.