Wednesday, June 18, 2008

SEM-Pasifika Training Program -- Majuro

From May 4-9, a SEM-Pasifika (socio-economic monitoring) training program began in Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands. Eighteen trainees attended from around the region including American Samoa, Hawaii, Kosrae, Pohnpei, Chuuk, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and Yap. Also attending, were representatives from various Marshall Islands resource agencies and local community members from Arno atoll.

The objectives of the week-long training were to: 1) provide the participants with background, purposes and methodological procedures of socioeconomic monitoring based on SEM-Pasifika Guidelines, 2) build capacity of the participants to use SEM-Pasifika guidelines, and 3) initiate socioeconomic assessment and monitoring /work plans /for 8 Pacific Island jurisdictions.



To fulfill these objectives this training program was designed to be carried out in three phases. The first phase (the RMI training) was aimed at introducing and practicing socio-economic tools and techniques. Participants were asked to attend the training with information from a specific site that had a complete or draft management plan. They used information from their site management plan to carry out socio-economic assessment preparatory activities (e.g. identify goals, objectives, information needs, and indicators) and develop a work plan to complete an assessment. For the field exercise, the RMI team provided workshop participants with information about the management goals from the Arno atoll management plan. The workshop group used this information to carry out a focus group, and develop, pre-test, and analyze a survey to capture baseline information and assess management effectiveness of Arno, Arno MPAs.

Specific outputs of the workshop include:
  • a pre-tested draft survey to be used by the Marshall Islands team to carry out socio-economic assessments in Arno and other atolls.

  • 8 workplans that include next steps and time-lines for completing social assessments at jurisdictional sits.

  • draft preparatory activities completed by each jurisdiction including socio-economic assessment goals, objectives, informationneeds, indicators, stakeholder identification, and communications planning

  • an agreement to pick 2-3 regional socio-economic indicators that all groups will try and incorporate into local assessments and monitor over time.
For the second phase of the SEM-Pasifika training program, off-site technical advice will be provided to further guide development of surveys, and seed funding will be provided to implement site assessments in all jurisdictions.




Finally, on-site technical support will be provided to help trainees analyze survey data and communicate and apply results into management planning. Workshop attendees agreed to share assessment reports and lessoned learned about their sites to support further learning in the region. Outcomes of this training will support development and adaptive management of on-site management activities.


Additionally, the training outputs will provide socio-economic information to conservation efforts and measures of success that contribute to the goals of the Micronesia Challenge.
This training is sponsored and facilitated through a partnership between NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program - SocMon, the Micronesians in Island Conservation (MIC), the Pacific Islands Marine Protected Area Community (PIMPAC), and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP.)

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