Our Recent Engagements

Seatone’s work spans more than a dozen countries and has generated broad and lasting impacts, including:

  • Effective protected area capacity building, management and performance evaluation
  • Successful marine protected area boundary expansion in US waters
  • Progressive fishery management legislation and management plans
  • Sustainable tourism statues evolved from voluntary environmental performance standards
  • Widespread reduction in anchor damage to Caribbean and Pacific coral reef ecosystems
  • Pioneering multi-stakeholder partnerships in several countries and regions
  • Capacity and skills development among emerging Caribbean conservation leaders

Learn about some of our most recent engagements and download workshop summaries, reports and practical tools embedded in the project descriptions below.

Jamaica Fish Sanctuary Network Capacity Assessment and Training

The Nature Conservancy - Jamaica Program

Seatone is currently assisting The Nature Conservancy in conducting a rapid capacity assessment and management effectiveness evaluation of Jamaica's burgeoning fish sanctuary network. The assessment will be followed by a tailored training course that addresses needs and interests of the management organizations charged with building and managing sites across the network. The combined effort of the assessment and associated training is expected to help strengthen management capacity and effectiveness across the network, foster peer-to-peer learning, enhance local benefits and help the government of Jamaica advance toward ambitious goals outlined in the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Caribbean Challenge Initiative. 

Development of a Paper on Climate Change Impacts to Mangroves in Caribbean SIDS

Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Seatone conducted a literature review peer reviewed science and subsequently prepared the paper Impacts of Climate Change on Mangrove Ecosystems in the Coastal and Marine Environments of Caribbean Small Island Developing States for the United Kingdom Commonwealth Heads of Government. The effort is part of a collaborative led by the Commonwealth Marine Economies Program (CMEP). The collaborative brings together United Kingdom marine institutes, national governments of commonwealth small island developing states (SIDS) and regional organizations, to help support maritime development in SIDS. Climate change is a strategic priority for CMEP and one of its first key outputs is the Caribbean climate change report card.

Facilitation of a Workshop on Offshore Aquaculture in the Southern California Bight (Part 2/2016)

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Aquarium of the Pacific

Building on the summer 2015 aquaculture workshop (described below), Seatone provided planning and facilitation support to a diverse array of stakeholders—including permitting agencies, conservation non-profits, scientists and other government authorities—who gathered to explore the AquaModel as a potential decision-support tool that may improve the permitting review process for offshore aquaculture in the Southern California Bight (SCB). The second day of the event, designed specifically for agencies with permitting authority or other interests in offshore aquaculture in the region, explored current levels of regulatory confidence held by permitting agencies. Read the final workshop series report that is expected to inform ongoing collaboration and potential development of offshore aquaculture development in the SCB. 

Planning and Facilitation of a National Workshop on Artificial Reefs in US Waters

NOAA Fisheries and Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission 

Seatone supported NOAA Fisheries, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission and a steering committee of academic experts and practitioners to design and facilitate a national workshop on artificial reefs in US waters. The workshop brought together planners, resource managers, scientists and fishermen from around the country to assess the current state of science and determine the effectiveness and efficacy of artificial reefs as a fishery management planning tool. Seatone conducted a pre-workshop survey of participant views and perspectives, and then utilized results with the steering committee to design the workshop agenda, identify guest speakers and then facilitate all elements of the two-day workshop in the Washington D.C. area. Seatone also researched state programs and current artificial reef science, and then prepared a participant workbook as a resource tool for all attendees. Read the workshop summary prepared by Seatone to see the range of outputs generated from this national event. 

Situational Analysis and Training for the 2015 Mesoamerican Reef Leadership Program Cohort, Central America

Fondo Mexicano para la Conservación de la Naturaleza

Seatone, working in partnership with the World Resources Institute (WRI), assisted the Mesoamerican Reef Leadership Program (MAR-L) in design and execution of its 2015 training series, which focused on conservation and economic valuation of mangroves. The MAR-L offers training and project incubation opportunities to emerging conservation leaders from all relevant sectors, including non-profit organizations, government, the private sector and academic institutions. Seatone and WRI prepared A Situational Analysis of Mangroves in the Mesoamerican Reef System to help guide the program. The analysis informed a series of trainings for Program Fellows that focused on resource governance, economic valuation of mangrove ecosystems, facilitative leadership, stakeholder engagement, consensus building and organizational development for long-term conservation success. Seatone mentored Fellows throughout the training series as they designed conservation initiatives or economic valuation studies that aim to advance mangrove protection, conservation and restoration across the region.

Facilitation of the NOAA Fisheries/State Directors Meetings (2014 and 2016)

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commissions

In his capacity as a senior mediator for the Sacramento State University Center for Collaborative Policy, Rich Wilson supported a steering committee of leaders from NOAA Fisheries, the nation's Interstate Marine Fisheries Commissions (Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific), and select state marine resource agency directors to develop the agenda and subsequently facilitate the 2014 and 2016 NOAA Fisheries/State Directors meetings. Rich helped all meeting participants -- including the full NOAA Fisheries Leadership Team and fisheries management leaders from around the nation -- to forge consensus agreements that strengthen communication and collaboration on the federal budgeting process; regional strategic and climate change action planning; Endangered Species Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act issues, joint enforcement and implementation of the National Recreational Fishing Policy.

Process Design/Facilitation of Technical and Advisory Committee Meetings of the Santa Rosa Plain Basin Advisory Panel

Sonoma County Water Agency

In his capacity as a senior mediator with the Sacramento State University Center for Collaborative Policy, Rich provided facilitation support services for technical and advisory panel meetings of the Santa Rosa Plain Basin Advisory Panel. The Panel is a stakeholder driven collaborative that developed and is currently advising on implementation of a groundwater management plan for the Santa Rosa Plain groundwater basin in northern California. Panel members include Sonoma County Water Agency staff; water planners from four cities in the jurisdictional area; environmental groups; construction and homeowner associations; and private well owners. Rich played a critical role over four years in helping the group consider and integrate scientific information, manage conflicts and divergent points of view, and ultimately build broad-based support for the first ever groundwater management in the area. View the Santa Rosa Plain Watershed Groundwater Management Plan to see the results of this multi-year collaborative effort.

Facilitation of a Workshop on Offshore Aquaculture in the Southern California Bight (Part 1/2015)

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Aquarium of the Pacific

Seatone worked with a consortium of government agencies, scientists, non-profits and private sector interests to plan and then lead facilitation of a multi-day workshop focused on the potential of offshore aquaculture development in the Southern California Bight. The workshop explored the nexus of science and policy surrounding aquaculture, and how regulatory agencies can achieve confidence in reviewing, permitting and monitoring projects off the southern California coast. Participants learned about the state of aquaculture science, recent advances in technology, and industry desires to develop pilot projects in the region. Early prioritization of potential environmental impacts helped participants focus later conversations on how best to address identified concerns and ensure growth of an economically and environmentally sustainable industry. Consensus agreements achieved at the culmination of the workshop included 1) support for the strategic goals outlined in the National Strategic Plan for Federal Aquaculture Research and 2) advancement of the California-based interagency working group via increased stakeholder collaboration and problem solving to support sustainable development of aquaculture. Read the workshop report to learn about key findings and consensus based recommendations that are driving next steps for aquaculture development in California.

Design and Pilot Launch of the CaMPAM Mentorship Program for Marine Protected Area Managers, Wider Caribbean

United Nations Environment Program – Caribbean Environment Program (UNEP-CEP)

Seatone supported UNEP-CEP and the Caribbean Marine Protected Area Managers Network and Forum (CaMPAM) through design, coordination and pilot launch of a Mentorship Program for Caribbean Marine Protected Area Managers. Seatone helped recruit senior level Caribbean resource managers and conservation practitioners, and then facilitated a one-week workshop with these mentors to collaboratively design the program framework, medium term strategy and pilot launch implementation plan. Several regional conservation leaders offered additional input to the program framework during a strategic planning session at the 66th annual meeting of Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute. Seatone then coordinated initial launch of the program in 2014, which resulted in the successful matching of three mentor/mentee pairs who went on to jointly develop mentoring agreements and initiate activities that are enhancing mentee professional competency and associated organizational development. Read the Mentorship Program Concept that Seatone developed for UNEP-CEP to learn more about the program.

Design/Facilitation of a National Protected Area Network Management Effectiveness Evaluation, The Bahamas

Bahamas Environment, Science and Technology Commission

Seatone assisted the Bahamas Environment, Science and Technology Commission, Bahamas National Trust, Department of Marine Resources and The Nature Conservancy in conducting a management effectiveness evaluation for the Bahamas protected area network. The Seatone team reviewed the 2009 baseline performance assessment of Bahamas sites and developed a comparative analysis approach for 2009-2014 based on nearly two hundred indicators across the six elements of the World Commission on Protected Areas evaluation framework. Seatone then designed and facilitated a three-day workshop that enabled senior and mid-level protected area staff to evaluate management performance changes over a five year period; better understand challenges and opportunities; identify and prioritize projects; and develop action plans to build capacity and improve management across the network. Seatone subsequently prepared a detailed analysis of current management performance and generated recommendations that the Bahamas National Trust and Department of Marine Resources are using to enhance management effectiveness, organizational development, staff competencies and stakeholder engagement. View the 2014 Bahamas Protected Area Network Management Effectiveness Evaluation to learn more about the results of this effort and the recommendations put forward to guide protected area management across the Bahamas. 

Process Design and Facilitation Support for Development of a Spiny Lobster Fishery Management Plan, California (USA)

California Department of Fish and Wildlife

In his capacity as a senior mediator for the Sacramento State University Center for Collaborative Policy, Rich Wilson assisted the California Department of Fish and Wildlife with collaborative process design and facilitation of a multi-stakeholder advisory committee that informed development of a California spiny lobster (Panulirus interruptus) fishery management plan. Rich led a team of 3 staff persons who conducted a situational analysis, facilitated advisory committee meetings and helped the group negotiate and forge consensus recommendations, including a commercial trap limit, allocation policy statement and multiple recreational management measures. The California Fish and Game Commission adopted the FMP in April, 2016 and the new regulations go into effect during the 2017/2018 lobster season. View the California spiny lobster fishery management plan that grew from the spiny lobster advisory committee neogiations.

Development of the IUCN Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Program Capacity Building Plan, Insular Caribbean

International Union for Conservation of Nature

Seatone designed and proposed an optimal capacity building plan for the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Program (BIOPAMA) in the Insular Caribbean. The comprehensive plan, adapted by senior BIOPAMA staff, is currently guiding IUCN's efforts to catalyze protected area capacity development and staff training at multiple sites in the Insular Caribbean. Seatone conducted desktop research, interviewed several regional partners and worked closely with IUCN staff to prepare the plan. The plan includes a programmatic framework and associated activities, workplan, evaluation protocols and two-year budget. Early implementation is promoting competency, collaboration and conservation impact in the Insular Caribbean that is expected to evolve beyond the initial two-year programmatic effort.

Training in Marine Protected Area Planning, Biophysical Monitoring and Assessment of Management Effectiveness, The Bahamas

Bahamas Environment, Science and Technology Commission

Seatone supported the Bahamas Environment, Science and Technology Commission through design and facilitation of a one-week training to build the capacity of non-governmental organizations and community groups across the Bahamas to provide skilled assistance to marine resource management agencies in the design, implementation and effective management of the Bahamas marine protected area network. Participants learned and conducted interactive exercises on an array of topics, including IUCN protected area categorization, Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation, biophysical monitoring and management effectiveness evaluation. Stakeholders from different islands identified threats to coastal ecosystems, designed local conservation projects and developed proposals to secure financing. Participants have since utilized workshop outcomes to start non-profit conservation organizations, collaborate with the Bahamas National Trust on design of local protected area networks, and develop mooring buoy programs to mark protected area boundaries.

Strategic Planning for Boundary Expansion of the Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries, USA

NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries and SeaWeb

Seatone, working in partnership with SeaWeb, designed and facilitated a strategic planning workshop for the Advisory Councils of the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries. The Advisory Councils identified, discussed and prioritized issues related to the boundary expansion and environmental review process for each sanctuary. Seatone utilized a pre-workshop stakeholder assessment to design the workshop agenda and facilitation plan. Stakeholder collaboration at the workshop focused on science needs and assessments, alternative energy and aquaculture. Workshop outputs informed sanctuary public scoping efforts to identify issues of concern and develop a draft environmental impact statement for the proposed boundary expansions. NOAA has since revised each sanctuary management plan and published a final environmental impact statement. The expansions encompass the nutrient rich upwelling zone that occurs off Point Arena and flows south into the original sanctuary boundaries.

Development and Dissemination of Issue Briefs on Marine Protected Area Management, Wider Caribbean

Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife

Under the Caribbean Challenge, the government of Italy, through its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, funded a UNEP-CEP project to strengthen capacity for MPA management across a selection of Caribbean countries. Seatone, working closely with the CaMPAM Coordinator and UNEP’s Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW RAC), identified and synthesized best practices for protected area management, and subsequently crafted issue briefs as a practical tool for managers, fisheries officers and conservation practitioners in the Caribbean and beyond. Seatone researched and authored issue briefs on marine resource governance, sustainable finance and stakeholder engagement. The full set of issue briefs are downloadable on the SPAW RAC website.

Development of Optimal Governance Structures for Marine Resource Management, Montserrat and Anguilla

Fauna and Flora International

Working in support of the Fauna and Flora International (FFI) Caribbean Program, Seatone coordinated with senior FFI staff and government resource management agencies in Montserrat and Anguilla to conduct a situational assessment of institutional capacity limitations, and then strategically plan for enhanced governance and resource management, with a particular focus on marine protected areas. Following an analysis of results from the situational assessment, Seatone designed and facilitated a marine resource governance workshop for both countries that enabled resource managers, non-profit conservation organizations, communities and the private sector to articulate desired governance principles and set specific marine resource management goals.

Stakeholder Assessment, Visioning and Strategic Planning to Advance Sustainable Tourism Practices in the Soufriere Marine Management Area, Saint Lucia

Soufriere Marine Management Association

Seatone conducted a stakeholder assessment for the Soufriere Marine Management Association (SMMA), with a particular focus on marine tourism business practices, resource user conflicts and opportunities for collaboration throughout west side protected areas in St. Lucia. Seatone then worked with protected area staff and SMMA Board members to design and facilitate a sustainable marine tourism workshop. The workshop focused on an analysis of stakeholder assessment results, followed by strategic visioning and planning exercises with high-level government officials, park managers and industry stakeholders. Represented interest groups included the Ministry of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries; the Division of Maritime Affairs; the Saint Lucia Bureau of Standards; the Department of Fisheries; the Marigot Bay marina; The Soufriere Development Foundation; and several marine tour operators. Seatone integrated assessment and workshop results to craft recommendations for the SMMA on future stakeholder engagement, collaboration and conflict management.

Training in Marine Protected Area Management for Caribbean Managers, Wider Caribbean

United Nations Environment Program – Caribbean Environment Program

Seatone worked closely with UNEP-CEP and the CaMPAM Coordinator to design the two-week 2011 CaMPAM Training of Trainers Course on Marine Protected Area Management, hosted at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve in Belize. Course attendees included twenty protected area managers and fisheries officers from seven Carribean Challenge countries in the Eastern Caribbean. Seatone designed the course objectives and agenda, recruited instructors and Belizean guest lecturers, and led sessions on participatory planning, facilitation basics and conflict management. The multi-disciplinary team of trainers and lecturers taught sessions on a comprehensive array of marine protected area management topics, with a strong emphasis on lessons learned from the Belize experience. Subsequent to the workshop Seatone provided oversight and technical assistance for local capacity building initiatives led by course graduates in seven Eastern Caribbean countries, with support from the CaMPAM small grants program. Shortly after the Belize-based course Seatone designed and led the participatory planning module at the Training of Trainers course in Guadeloupe for French and Dutch protected area managers.

Design, Facilitation and Policy Recommendations based on a Social Viability Assessment of Cruise Ship Tourism in Southern Belize

The Belize Tourism Board

In response to a controversial cruise development proposal the Belize Tourism Board contracted Seatone to conduct, as a third-party neutral facilitator, A Social Viability Assessment of Cruise Tourism in Southern Belize. Seatone conducted confidential situation assessment interviews with key interest groups and facilitated a series of public meetings in communities throughout the region. Due to broad scale opposition to the project, Seatone prepared a report for the government that recommended against approval, yet also included alternatives for improving public and private sector collaboration to advance sustainable tourism and conservation of the region’s natural assets. Release of the report led to cancellation of the cruise development project and fostered improved relations between government and civil society groups, notably through development of the tour operator quality assurance/training program.

Design and Facilitation of a National Belize Tour Operator Performance Assessment and Quality Assurance Training Program

Belize Tourism Board

Seatone collaborated with the Belize Tourism Board to facilitate a national-level tour operator performance assessment and design a sustainable tourism training-of-trainers course for select industry leaders. Seatone initially developed fifty-nine performance indicators to collect, aggregate and analyze baseline data on tour quality, cultural and environmental performance, and safety from a broad set of Belizean tour operators and tour types. Assessment results informed development of training modules that addressed performance gaps and promoted sustainable practices and Caribbean Community (CARICOM) tourism standards. Seatone subsequently led two training-of-trainers courses for select industry leaders in order to enhance capacity development and training opportunities across Belize.

Strategic Planning for Lionfish Control in the Wider Caribbean

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Comisión Nacional de Areas Naturales Protegidas, and Reef Environmental Education Foundation

Seatone, working in support of a client consortium, designed and facilitated the first-ever lionfish strategy workshop for the Wider Caribbean. The workshop included forty-five resource managers, fisheries officers and conservation practitioners from sixteen Caribbean countries. Seatone led collaborative planning of a best management practices framework for lionfish control in the Wider Caribbean. Shortly thereafter, workshop outputs informed development, publication and widespread distribution of the hands-on manual Invasive Lionfish: A Guide to Control and Management.

Charter Development for the Environmental Research of Belize

Environmental Research Institute of Belize

Seatone assisted senior staff and Board members of the Environmental Research Institute of Belize in the development of a charter (governance structure) for the organization’s steering committee. Seatone conducted situation assessment interviews with Board members to establish guiding principles for collaboration, identify convergent and divergent perspectives on key operational issues, and secure feedback on decision-making protocols. Seatone subsequently facilitated a strategic planning meeting with the Board that enabled refinement and consensus approval of a new charter.

  • Evaluating protected area performance in the Bahamas
  • Expanding protected area boundaries in California
  • Enhancing protected area effectiveness in the Bahamas
  • Evaluating resource governance options in Anguilla
  • 2015 Mesoamerican Reef Leadership Program Fellows

Seatone Core Service Areas

  • Conservation program development, implementation and evaluation
  • Protected area design, management and performance evaluation
  • Fisheries management, aquaculture and sustainable seafood
  • Situational assessments, feasibility studies and strategic planning
  • Facilitation, conflict management and consensus building
  • Standards development and sustainable business guidelines/best practices
  • Trainings and workshops
  • Mentoring and professional coaching