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Partnerships for enhanced engagement in research (PEER) SCIENCE
Cycle 1 (2011 Deadline)

Enhancements of research for adaptation of wetlands in Indonesia to projected impacts of sea level rise  

PI: Frida Sidik, Institute for Marine Research and Observation, Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries
U.S. Partner: Ilka Feller, Smithsonian Institution
Project Dates: October 2012 - May 2015
Evidence to Action Supplement: August 2018 - August 2019

Project Overview

Mangroves are key ecosystems that provide vital services to protect the coasts and fishery resources in Indonesia. Mangroves are the primary coastal barrier in which a range of processes occur that are important to adapting to sea level rise. Indonesia’s mangroves are threatened by sea level rise that could cause coastal wetland change and thus increased coastal flooding that will affect those living in coastal areas. Despite the importance of this ecosystem and the fact that Indonesia has the world's largest areas of mangroves, understanding of mangrove responses to sea level rise in this region is lacking.

This project aims to establish a greater understanding of wetland adaptation to sea level rise in Indonesia and to improve the capacity of Indonesian researchers in the monitoring of coastal systems. A mangrove monitoring station will be established to gather information on wetland stability, and the station could serve as a model for the creation of similar marine monitoring sites in other parts of Indonesia. The project also involves data collection and model development to increase knowledge of how mangrove wetlands will respond to sea level changes in Indonesia. The collaborative work of Indonesian-U.S. researchers will promote training and technical expertise development for Indonesian researchers, to be facilitated by the U.S. counterpart with the goal of strengthening Indonesian capacity regarding marine resource adaptation to climate change. Results of this study will be disseminated to the Indonesian scientific and academic communities, as well as to marine resource management officials, who may use the study to gain perspectives on broader implications of climate change and possible policy responses.
Summary of Recent Activities
In the spring of 2018, Dr. Sidik and her colleagues were awarded a PEER Evidence to Action (EtoA) supplement. This new funding support will allow them to produce guidelines and provide information on mangrove adaptation to sea level rise that will enhance the understanding of mangrove ecosystems in Indonesia. The guidelines and materials will be available for academics, coastal managers, and NGOs. In order to disseminate their guidelines and associated information, the team will convene workshops, open lectures, and discussions that will enhance the capacity building of researchers, practitioners, and academics on mangrove research and monitoring. The activities should also build awareness among policy makers and coastal managers regarding the importance of mangroves to mitigate climate change and their adaptation to climate change.  

Due to administrative delays within her institution, it took almost eight months for Dr. Sidik to obtain the necessary permissions to receive the EtoA supplement she was awarded. While waiting, she and her team did all they could to lay the groundwork for the supplemental activities by building a website, attending meetings on mangroves and other climate change issues to gather information and input, and drafting portions of their planned book. They also undertook several other side activities designed to enhance the broader impacts of their PEER project, including providing business plan development and other capacity building assistance for a local small enterprise to utilize mangrove in producing batik and handicrafts. Their work got under way in earnest in August 2018 when their grant funds could finally be released. They completed their mangrove guidebook, Panduan Mangrove Estuari Perancak (Perancak Estuary Mangrove Guidance), that same month as a way of sharing their research results with the broader community of end-users. The book was launched during the Laut Nusantara (Indonesia Sea) ceremonies at their institute’s Bali office. In addition, they have also created and launched their website MangroveNet, which is run by the creative team and IT division of their institute and can be accessed at

Because their PEER EtoA supplement project involves both gathering the input of key stakeholders and disseminating findings and recommendations to them, Dr. Sidik and her team are working closely with several government agencies and NGOs. They have discussed their proposed initiative for science-based mangrove restoration and management with the World Research Institute and the Nature Conservancy. In addition, they have collaborated with CIFOR and the Indonesian Ministry of Environment and Forestry on publications and science outreach. Dr. Sidik and her colleagues will hold their first workshop on the project November 1-2, 2018, with the participation of two national research agencies and seven NGOs. The aim of this workshop is to build networks among mangrove practitioners and researchers and gather inputs for developing policy recommendations regarding mangrove- and climate change-related issues. A working paper based on focus group discussions by mangrove researchers and practitioners will be produced to document the workshop outcomes. The PI and her team will subsequently share the paper and solicit feedback by means of meetings with relevant institutions and open lectures at state universities. They plan a second workshop in early December to introduce their monitoring station and other research output to governmental institutions.

1-152 Mangrove Video Shoot
The team shoots a documentary to raise awareness of mangrove conservation (Photo courtesy Frida Sidik).

Indonesia Partnership Photo 3
Nuryani Widagti makes a presentation at an international workshop on
the carbon cycle and climate change in Bali (Photo courtesy Frida Sidik).

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