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About the MPA Action Agenda

Established in 2013, the MPA Action Agenda (MPA AA) (hosted by WWF Netherlands) was created as a way to effectively invest major efforts into expanding MPAs as well as build capacity to better manage MPAs around the globe. The overall goal of this multi-year initiative is to increase the robustness of the global oceans and thereby the continuity of ocean productivity and biodiversity, which are both crucial for the availability of seafood and jobs for millions of people as well as for the survival of ocean wildlife.

See "our work" for more detailed information on the main successes achieved in and the main objectives for of the MPA Action Agenda. 

Do you want to support the MPA Action Agenda in it's mission to expand MPAs worldwide, and manage them more effectively? Please do get in touch with us via Your contribution is greatly appreciated!


Conservation of our oceans globally, including all life in it, for the benefit of healthy marine ecosystems, sustainable livelihoods and for food security of communities worldwide.


Healthy oceans for a healthy planet and the people who depend on it, through partnerships, especially the MPA Action Group, promoting the use of area based measures such as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and Locally Managed Marine Areas (LMMAs) to empower communities to conserve marine biodiversity and sustainable development of coastal communities to achieve the CBD’s Aichi Target 11 and SDG14.


Only about 5% of the world’s oceans are protected, and the vast majority of existing marine parks and reserves are either poorly or not managed. And yet, from maintaining sources of food to helping protect shorelines, and from protecting biodiversity to providing income and jobs, MPAs can achieve so much. Healthy oceans are essential both all life on the planet as well as for the people living on the planet so we need to protect the oceans.


The MPA Action Agenda makes a unique and valuable combination of working on ocean protection and awareness for the topic on different levels globally with a variety of partners: from getting commitment on the highest political level to on the ground support in the establishment and management on the ground and creating awareness for ocean protection among the everyday person. Strong partnerships exists on all levels and different approaches in protection of marine areas are used to the strength of the group.


Better ocean protection is achieved through different ways by the MPA Action Agenda; providing technical and financial capacity to accelerate effectiveness of MPAs and LMMAs, fostering shared learning between MPA and LMMA managers, producing online training modules based on best practices, documenting and communicating the contribution of these MPAs and LMMAs toward the achievement of sustainable development as well as communicating to the wider global community on the importance of MPAs and LMMAs to coastal communities and the everyday person.


Our core team

Malou van Kempen

Malou van Kempen started as an intern at WWF Netherlands in 2016. She continued her career at WWF and is currently the Programme Officer of the MPA Action Agenda. The push projects, knowledge sharing and Ocean Witness are part of her portfolio. Malou holds an MSc in Leisure, Tourism and Environment from Wageningen University and Research.

Carol Phua

Carol Phua (Manager, MPA Action Agenda) has been with WWF for 12 years, and in that time she has initiated, set up and managed national, regional and global programmes. She started her WWF career at the European Policy Office working on European marine and fisheries policy, and then moved back to the Netherlands to join WWF Netherlands where she led development of  the WWF Sharks & Rays Initiative. While with WWF-NL she was seconded to WWF Malaysia as Head of Marine and set up the WWF Malaysia Marine Programme. She is also the lead author and editor of the Living Blue Planet Report and the co-author of the Dutch Good Fish Guide. Carol has a Bachelor of Applied Sciences (Hons) in Natural Systems & Wildlife Management from the University of Queensland and Master of Science in Fisheries & Aquaculture from Wageningen University.