The Reef Resilience Network offers intensive, in-person training opportunities for coral reef managers and practitioners through Learning Exchanges and Resilience Trainings. Learning Exchanges are designed to support the transfer of knowledge between coral reef managers from different locations. Past events have included in-person workshops, presentations at conferences, and site exchanges. If you have an idea for a potential Learning Exchange, please contact us. The map below shows locations of recent learning exchanges.
map of learning exchanges

Red indicates the location of coral reefs. Sources: ESRI, GEBCO, NOAA, National Geographic, DeLorme, NAVTEQ,, and other contributors

Read more about these learning exchanges below:


March 16-18 — American Samoa

In partnership with NOAA Coral, The Nature Conservancy’s Reef Resilience Network held a three-day Strategic Communications Workshop March 16-18 to help marine conservation and education professionals from 8 agencies in American Samoa approach their work strategically. Participants learned key components of strategic communications, and applied these concepts to develop communications plans for climate change preparation projects in American Samoa. Based on participants’ needs, training was also provided in media relations with opportunity for practical application of these skills. Read the report.

November 2015 — Mahe, Seychelles

In cooperation with NOAA's International MPA Capacity Building Program and the Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association, we hosted a hands-on training for MPA managers and practitioners in the Western Indian Ocean region on tools to address climate change and enhance resilience within their MPAs. Thirty participants from ten countries in the region attended this week-long on marine spatial planning, coastal processes with implications for management, and basic marine and coastal monitoring protocols, including hands-on training to monitor sea urchin density, structural complexity of the benthos, fish identification and sizing, and beach profiling. The Seychelles National Park Authority provided locations for workshop field activities and case studies. Discussion amongst workshop participants is continuing via the WIO Network Forum discussion group.

Group for Website

August 2015 — Miami, Florida

A four-day learning exchange was held August 11-14, in partnership with the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute, to help marine conservation professionals approach their outreach and communications work strategically. Participants learned key components of strategic communications, and applied these concepts to create their own communications plan. Facilitators worked with participants prior to the event to identify a marine communication project to develop during the learning exchange. Based on participants’ needs, training was also provided in media relations, interviews, and social marketing, with opportunity for practical application of these skills. Read the report.

April 2015 — O‘ahu & Maui, Hawai‘i

Four participants from The Bahamas National Trust and the Abaco Association for Flying Fishing Guides visited Hawai‘i to learn about community-based management initiatives across the state, with emphasis on the State of Hawai‘i's Makai Watch Program – an innovative program engaging communities in the management of their nearshore marine resources by building voluntary compliance through outreach and the reporting of violations to state authorities. Participants took part in a series of meetings with the coordinators and volunteers for the Makai Watch program, as well as with other programs in support of marine conservation in Hawai‘i implemented in collaboration with the Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources, with NGOs, and community-based organizations. “On this visit we saw first-hand how other conservation managers address similar issues,” said Mr. David Knowles, Director of Parks for The Bahamas National Trust. “Sharing in the lessons learned by the Pacific region is invaluable as we step up to the challenges of protected areas management in The Bahamas.” The learning exchange was hosted in partnership with the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute and was organized in conjunction with the Pacific Islands Marine Protected Areas Community. Read the report.

March 2015 — Honolulu, Hawai‘i

A four-day writing workshop was held for Pacific Island coral reef managers from Hawaiʻi, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa who received mentorship from Peter Kareiva and team of reviewers to improve writing skills and finalize a journal publication for submission. Read about participants' research on fish and octopus. Read the report.

September 2014 — Maui, Hawaii

Fourteen practitioners from Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and Yap participated in a Strategic Communications Learning Exchange on communications, working with the media, and facilitation, focusing on the application to a current project. Read the report.

Guam LX Group LX Photo

March 2014 — Guam

Thirty managers participated in the Adapting to Changing Climate Workshop on the use of new tools that provide community members and stakeholders with an understanding of climate change and adaptation strategies. Caribbean managers provided feedback on modification of the tool for the Caribbean. Read the report.

NYC speakers

April 2013 — New York City

This learning exchange took place at the American Natural History Museum Island Resilience Symposium. The Reef Resilience Program sponsored and supported 6 presenters at the symposium.

Mexico writing workshop

December 2012 — Mexico

During this Writing Workshop for Caribbean Coral Reef Managers, 14 managers and practitioners from around the region worked with writing experts to write and edit publishable journal and media articles.

Hawaii (top), Palau (bottom)

June 2011 — Hawaii; February 2012 — Palau

This learning exchange took place in Hawaii and Palau. During the two trips between the islands, 62 managers, practitioners, and community members learned about management systems in each location.

International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Mgmt learning exchange

December 2011 — Guadeloupe

Part of the 4th International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Management Symposium (ITMEMS), this learning exchange included 58 individuals. The Reef Resilience program participated as conference leaders and dedicated a day of the conference to resilience concepts, with trainings.

Ft Lauderdale Florida conference

2011 — Florida

This was the 2nd Reef Resilience Conference: Planning for Resilience, with 242 participants. It included a 2-day workshop, with a presentation of viewpoints of the fishing/diving industry. Also, it included the International Reef Resilience practitioners workshop.

IMCC Canada

May 2011 — British Columbia

This learning exchange consisted of two parts: First was a pre-International Marine Conservation Congress (IMCC) workshop with 24 participants that focused on solving problems around MPA network design and implementation. This was followed by a half-day symposium during the conference with 120 attendees. This symposium included a presentation of resilience science and application of advances to management decisions.

Caribbean learning exchange held in Florida

June 2010 — Florida

This learning exchange focused on developing bleaching response plans and included 14 coral reef managers from Florida, the Caribbean, and Australia.

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