MADAM, Concept and Reality
MADAM was designed by the Centre for Tropical Marine Ecology (ZMT) in Bremen to establish a German research focus on “Ecology of Tropical Coastal Regions” aiming at improving the scientific basis for the protection and utilization of tropical coastal ecosystems. It was based on partnership with scientific institutions in Brazil. The development of the MADAM Project as a wide scope and long-term approach in environmental research was an early response of Brazil and Germany to worldwide disintegration of natural fragile ecosystems in the tropics. It was developed in the light of the Rio Declaration, Agenda 21, of the United Nations Conference for Environment and Development 1992, which promoted a worldwide policy for sustainable development and cooperation and drew attention to the ecological functions of threatened ecosystems like the mangroves. MADAM started in 1995 as a bilateral integrated long-term research project on mangrove dynamics and management. Financial support ended after 10 years in 2005, but the successful scientific cooperation is still ongoing.