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Reexamining the science of marine protected areas: linking knowledge to action

Marine protected areas (MPAs) are often implemented to conserve or restore species, fisheries, habitats, ecosystems, and ecological functions and services; buffer against the ecological effects of climate change; and alleviate poverty in coastal communities. Scientific research provides valuable insights into the social and ecological impacts of MPAs, as well as the factors that shape these impacts, providing useful guidance or “rules of thumb” for science-based MPA policy.