Research Topic

Drivers of Mangrove Forest Change and its Effects on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services

About this Research Topic

Human wellbeing in the coastal tropics and subtropics is linked to the ecosystem services provided by systems such as mangroves. Thus, the fate of mangrove forests impacts the health and wellness of those communities. There are strong arguments globally, nationally, and locally for conserving and restoring mangroves. Among these include mitigating climate change, protecting coasts, and provisioning fisheries. However, with approximately 70% of mangrove forests lost or degraded to date globally, remaining mangroves and the services they provide risk being eradicated from many locations. As coastal forests, mangroves often ‘fall through the gaps’ due to terrestrial- and marine-focused policies that ignore or subject them to unaligned legal mandates and complex customary governance. In many nations, coastal development, agriculture, and aquaculture have been prioritized over mangrove condition and persistence, with far-reaching impacts on coastal communities from the loss of mangrove ecosystem services. There are, however, recent causes for hope as annual mangrove loss is declining, and multinational, cross-sectoral groups such as the Global Mangrove Alliance are championing large-scale, science-driven mangrove protection, sustainable management, and restoration.

This Research Topic will highlight research related to biophysical, socio-economic, and political drivers (e.g. governance conditions, management structures, and policies) that result in mangrove forest loss, persistence, or gain. In addition, articles that explore how mangrove forest change alters biodiversity, the provision of ecosystem services, communities, economies, and climate risk will be encouraged, in order to address drivers of change (e.g. through policy, practice or management) and promote mangrove conservation and restoration.

Robust scientific evaluation and understanding of the links between enabling conditions – both positive and negative – and impacts on local communities, governments, and other stakeholders can provide essential insights into whether mangrove conservation or restoration programs will be successful. To this end, we encourage submissions spanning scales from local to global, including conservation and restoration case studies, regional or global data synthesis, apposite opinion or calls for action articles, and policy briefs to guide managers and decision-makers.

This Research Topic calls for original research papers, critical reviews and assessments, opinion articles, and policy briefs among others, including, but not limited to, the following topics under the broad umbrella of drivers of mangrove change:

• Scaling-up mangrove conservation and restoration efforts.
• Integration of meaningful policies and their outcomes.
• Assessment of global case studies for ecosystem services, economic valuation, ecological biodiversity, and policy impacts of mangrove loss/gain.
• Innovative approaches and incentives.


Keywords: Conservation Responses, Sustainable Management, Deforestation, Restoration, Natural Regeneration


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Human wellbeing in the coastal tropics and subtropics is linked to the ecosystem services provided by systems such as mangroves. Thus, the fate of mangrove forests impacts the health and wellness of those communities. There are strong arguments globally, nationally, and locally for conserving and restoring mangroves. Among these include mitigating climate change, protecting coasts, and provisioning fisheries. However, with approximately 70% of mangrove forests lost or degraded to date globally, remaining mangroves and the services they provide risk being eradicated from many locations. As coastal forests, mangroves often ‘fall through the gaps’ due to terrestrial- and marine-focused policies that ignore or subject them to unaligned legal mandates and complex customary governance. In many nations, coastal development, agriculture, and aquaculture have been prioritized over mangrove condition and persistence, with far-reaching impacts on coastal communities from the loss of mangrove ecosystem services. There are, however, recent causes for hope as annual mangrove loss is declining, and multinational, cross-sectoral groups such as the Global Mangrove Alliance are championing large-scale, science-driven mangrove protection, sustainable management, and restoration.

This Research Topic will highlight research related to biophysical, socio-economic, and political drivers (e.g. governance conditions, management structures, and policies) that result in mangrove forest loss, persistence, or gain. In addition, articles that explore how mangrove forest change alters biodiversity, the provision of ecosystem services, communities, economies, and climate risk will be encouraged, in order to address drivers of change (e.g. through policy, practice or management) and promote mangrove conservation and restoration.

Robust scientific evaluation and understanding of the links between enabling conditions – both positive and negative – and impacts on local communities, governments, and other stakeholders can provide essential insights into whether mangrove conservation or restoration programs will be successful. To this end, we encourage submissions spanning scales from local to global, including conservation and restoration case studies, regional or global data synthesis, apposite opinion or calls for action articles, and policy briefs to guide managers and decision-makers.

This Research Topic calls for original research papers, critical reviews and assessments, opinion articles, and policy briefs among others, including, but not limited to, the following topics under the broad umbrella of drivers of mangrove change:

• Scaling-up mangrove conservation and restoration efforts.
• Integration of meaningful policies and their outcomes.
• Assessment of global case studies for ecosystem services, economic valuation, ecological biodiversity, and policy impacts of mangrove loss/gain.
• Innovative approaches and incentives.


Keywords: Conservation Responses, Sustainable Management, Deforestation, Restoration, Natural Regeneration


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

29 January 2021 Abstract
30 June 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

29 January 2021 Abstract
30 June 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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