Progress so far

The Modelling and Decision Support Working Group has developed fundamental ecological, socio-economic and biophysical models.

Fundamental ecological models

Data from reefs worldwide has enabled revision of the parameters for the local ecological models and derived parameter ranges. Work is now proceeding with Working Group members in Mexico and Philippines to change the ranges for application to specific reef areas at the local scale, such as Banco Chinchorro (Mexico) and Bolinao (Philippines). For the deterministic local models, using University College London (UCL) computer clusters, parameter sweeps across the derived parameter ranges have tested the probability of a phase shift from a coral- to an algal-dominated state. Ongoing tests aim to establish how many parameter sets need to be sampled for accurate results.

Fundamental socio-economic models

The Working Group is focussed on resolving a modelling ontology issue resulting from the need to ensure that the smooth coupling of the models between natural and social science domains.

Regional scale bio-physical models

A test implementation of a regional scale biophysical model for the Meso-American Barrier Reef region has been built, deriving parameterization and initial conditions data from Working Group members in Mexico, and output from the Meso-American Barrier Reef Systems Project Synoptic Monitoring Data. Repeated model runs have been executed using the University of Tasmania’s supercomputer facility, TPAC (

Models of Meso-American Barrier Reef

The Chinchorro Bank Information System and databases for Mahahual and Xclak systems are progressing through assembly and organisation of data, including spatial analysis of fish and benthic communities.

Models of Philippine reefs

Formal analysis of spatio-temporal dynamics of fish and benthic communities of Bolinao-Anda reef system is providing input to datasets for paramaterisation of the standard local model.

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