Social Science

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Date Submitted: 09/13/2011 02:58 AM

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Project Design

Key Issues

Our review of coral reef management projects identified four areas as key issues in project design. These include:

• Participatory processes and partnering

• Capacity and infrastructure

• Funding and sustainability

• Project feasibility


External donor funded projects, through their preconceived goals, objectives and time frames, are often inclined to fail in part or at least to not be sustainable beyond their life (White et al. 2005). The dependence on external assistance creates both the potential for and the reality of non-sustainable ICM institutions and policies as projects are terminated and staff withdrawn. The majority of community-based coastal resource management projects are not maintained after the funding and external technical assistance end (White et al. 2005).

Despite difficulties in implementation of ICM projects, investments continue to increase. In the Philippines alone, it is estimated that from 1974 to 2000, US$230 million has been invested in coastal resource management. About 63% of this was from international donors, 36% from government appropriations and loan counterparts and 1% from local donors. Given these investments in ICM and related projects to improve the status and management of coastal resources, the question is often raised about how to make them more sustainable for the long-term improvement of social, economic and environmental parameters in coastal areas.

Problems in project design can lead to difficulties in implementation and sustainability of project. Thus, projects must be carefully designed to reach the desired outputs and outcomes. In order to overcome these threats and barriers, project design should meet the following three objectives:

1. Ensure the project goals are clearly articulated and understood by stakeholders.

2. Ensure that project is relevant and responsive to coral reef management issues.

3. Ensure project outcomes are achieved within the proposed funding...