Co-creating an Information Management Strategy for the Western Indian Ocean through a Multi-stakeholder Working Group

Nairobi Convention
Published: 07 November 2023
Last edited: 07 November 2023
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The Information Management Strategy (IMS) for the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) aims to promote marine environmental knowledge sharing and effective governance. Initiated at the 10th Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention in 2021, it's a participatory, multi-stakeholder approach, involving governments, NGOs, private sector, academia, and others.

The IMS seeks to raise public awareness about the ocean's importance and facilitate data sharing for informed decision-making. It establishes a Multi-stakeholder Working Group (MSWG) with regional representation to guide its development. Stakeholder engagements, dialogues, and technical guidance are key components.

This strategy recognizes the region's unique challenges and the need for multi-sectoral collaboration in managing the marine environment. It's a significant step towards creating a more ocean-literate public and informed ocean governance in the Western Indian Ocean.


East and South Africa
Scale of implementation
Coastal forest
Coral reef
Deep sea
Marine and coastal ecosystems
Open sea
Rocky reef / Rocky shore
Salt marsh
Seamount / Ocean ridge
Access and benefit sharing
Biodiversity mainstreaming
Coastal and marine spatial management
Connectivity / transboundary conservation
Ecosystem services
Erosion prevention
Fisheries and aquaculture
Forest Management
Gender mainstreaming
Genetic diversity
Habitat fragmentation and degradation
Legal & policy frameworks
Local actors
Marine litter
Protected and conserved areas governance
Protected and conserved areas management planning
Renewable energies
Science and research
Species management
Sustainable livelihoods
Waste management
Wastewater treatment
Increasing temperatures
Land and Forest degradation
Loss of Biodiversity
Ocean warming and acidification
Sea level rise
Storm surges
Tropical cyclones / Typhoons
Conflicting uses / cumulative impacts
Ecosystem loss
Pollution (incl. eutrophication and litter)
Unsustainable harvesting incl. Overfishing
Lack of food security
Lack of public and decision maker’s awareness
Lack of technical capacity
Poor monitoring and enforcement
Poor governance and participation
Unemployment / poverty
Sustainable development goals
SDG 1 – No poverty
SDG 2 – Zero hunger
SDG 5 – Gender equality
SDG 10 – Reduced inequalities
SDG 11 – Sustainable cities and communities
SDG 12 – Responsible consumption and production
SDG 13 – Climate action
SDG 14 – Life below water
SDG 16 – Peace, justice and strong institutions
SDG 17 – Partnerships for the goals
Aichi targets
Target 1: Awareness of biodiversity increased
Target 2: Biodiversity values integrated
Target 4: Sustainable production and consumption
Target 5: Habitat loss halved or reduced
Target 6: Sustainable management of aquatic living resources
Target 7: Sustainable agriculture, aquaculture and forestry
Target 8: Pollution reduced
Target 10: Ecosystems vulnerable to climate change
Target 11: Protected and conserved areas
Target 12: Reducing risk of extinction
Target 13: Safeguarding genetic diversity
Target 14: Ecosystem services
Target 15: Ecosystem restoration and resilience
Target 16: Access to and sharing benefits from genetic resources
Target 17: Biodiversity strategies and action plans
Target 18: Traditional knowledge
Target 19: Sharing information and knowledge
Target 20: Mobilizing resources from all sources


Somalia | Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, South Africa, Madagascar, Comoros, France (Réunion), Mauritius, Seychelles
South Africa


  • Feeding science into policy-making is required to ensure informed and sustainable approaches are taken to manage marine and coastal resources.

  • Data and information often exist but must be sufficiently shared across sectors, regions and institutions.

  • Identifying and engaging appropriate and a critical mass of stakeholders sufficient to constitute the Multi-stakeholder Working Group.


  • Contracting parties of the Nairobi Convention
  • People of the WIO dependent on marine and coastal ecosystems
  • Co-development participants
  • Private sector/NGOs for blue growth
  • Coastal/marine organizations

How do the building blocks interact?

See the below image for an overview of the process architecture. Please note that the IMS MSWG is convened by the Nairobi Convention (NC) at the heart of the process with other organisations (incl. GIZ, CLI, ZMT) assisting the NC in developing the strategy.


  • A draft Information Management Strategy has been developed and circulated. A final version will be presented to the Focal Points of the Nairobi Convention for possible consideration at the upcoming Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention in early 2024.

  • The IMS Multi-stakeholder Working Group engaged with regional stakeholders through Technical Dialogues on key topics identified as priorities for the Strategy, e.g. Ocean Accounting and Marine Spatial Planning.

  • The IMS Multi-stakeholder Working Group held exchanges with stakeholders involved in developing the Regional Ocean Governance Strategy for the WIO, ensuring regular communication and understanding of synergies and complementarities.

  • The Collective Leadership Institute conducted training and information sessions for members of the IMS MSWG, introducing CLI’s two core methodologies (The Collective Leadership Compass and the Dialogic Change Model). These helped participants better understand their respective stakeholder systems and enhance their individual and collective leadership capacities.

  • A regional consensus and ownership of the IMS development process assures mainstreaming of the IMS into national planning processes.

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Agnes Mukami Nairobi Convention