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By Thymio Papayannis, Dave Pritchard

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A first step in this direction would be the clear, unequivocal and official delineation of such urban wetlands along with their core areas and buffer zones. This would help to guard against the expansion of urbanised areas at the expense of the ecosystem. Then potential conflicts should also be identified and addressed, especially with regard to land use and water resources management. It is clear that the management of urban wetlands must be fully integrated into urban planning at its various levels to achieve a harmonious use of space and resources.

Bridgewater, P. (2007), Heritage in multilateral agreements, in Papayannis, T. , Natural Heritage: At the Interface of Nature and Culture, London: Routledge. Debeveć, V. (2011), Interpretation and ecotourism possibilities of Mediterranean wetland sites, in T. Papayannis and D. E. Pritchard, Culture and Wetlands in the Mediterranean: an Evolving Story, Athens: Med-INA. Malacou, M. (2011), Traditional ecological knowledge, conservation and socio-ecological perspectives in the Prespa transboundary Park, in T.

4), UNESCO Member States propose potential BR territories (step 3): there is no particular timeframe within which proposals should be received by the MaB Secretariat (step 4). Fig. 4 The MaB process for Biosphere Reserve designation. Less well-known than the World Heritage Convention, the MaB Programme nonetheless represents a significant platform for activities concerning designated areas. The number of Biosphere Reserves has grown constantly, reaching 564 sites in 109 countries by 201034. An increasingly important element of the work of UNESCO and its Ecological and Earth Sciences Division, which hosts the MaB Secretariat, involves coordinating its activities with those of MEAs and their Secretariats –within the five 33 Core, buffer and transition, the three components of BR zoning, convey a decreasing degree of formal protection.

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