Environmental Initiatives



Meity Mongdong is the capacity building manager of Bird’s Head Seascape, the global epicenter of marine biodiversity in northwest Papua Barat, Indonesia, which includes the Raja Ampat Islands. The Papuan Bird’s Head Seascape program is supporting the Raja Ampat government in establishing a network of marine protected areas totaling more than 8.6 million acres and co-managed by local communities and local government agencies. Her work focuses on local community engagement, conflict resolution among marine stakeholder groups, marine conservation policy development, aquatic resource monitoring, and capacity development of local staff of marine protected areas.

Mongdong grew up at the edge of the Bunaken National Park, at the northern tip of the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia, with a love for the sea and a deep awareness of the challenges that coastal communities confront for economic survival. In 1994, while still a Sam Ratulangi University student, Mongdong was recruited to serve as a village liaison officer in a natural resources management program in Bunaken funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development. In the mid-1990s, she joined other conservationists in founding Kelola, a local citizen-based organization focused on marine conservation. She worked for four years as the organization’s field research coordinator, focusing on issues related to the management of the Bunaken National Park and the well-being of people in fishing and farming communities in the park area. In the late 1990s, she helped establish the Swara Parangpuan Foundation, the first citizen-sector organization dealing with women’s issues in Manado, the capital city of the North Sulawesi province. In 1999 she returned to marine conservation in as one of the leaders of the Bunaken National Park collaborative management initiative - the first successful implementation of participatory, collaborative management of a national park since the implementation of national park system in the early 1970's.

In 2002, Mongdong was awarded the Seacology Prize, which recognizes an indigenous islander for exceptional achievement in preserving the environment and culture of their native island. She was elected in 2005 as an Ashoka fellow for her work on the development of an innovative protected-area co-management system that has enlisted the support of all major stakeholders.  



Bachelor’s (S1) training at University of Sam Ratulangi Manado, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences


2002: Seacology Foundation Prize
2005: Ashoka Fellowship
2009: Presented with Conservation International Values Leader Award


2011 – present; Bird’s Head Seascape Capacity Building Coordinator, Conservation International Indonesia Marine Program.
2009 – 2011; Deputy Manager of Raja Ampat Program, Conservation International Indonesia.
2006 – 2009; Raja Ampat MPAs Management Coordinator, Conservation International Indonesia.
2004-2006; Founder and Executive Director of Bintang Laut
2000 – 2005; MPA Management Specialist for the USAID-funded Natural Resources Management Program (NRM/EPIQ), North Sulawesi, Indonesia. 


• Grantham HS, Agostini VN, Wilson J, Mangubhai S, Hidayat N, Muljadi A, Muhajir, Rotinsulu C, Mongdong M, Beck M, and HP Possingham (in press). A comparison of zoning analyses to inform the planning of a marine protected area network in Raja Ampat, Indonesia. Marine Policy. Published online 23 July 2012: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2012.05.035

• Agostini VN, Grantham HS, Wilson J, Mangubhai S, Rotinsulu C, Hidayat N, Muljadi A, Muhajir, Mongdong M, Darmawan A, Rumetna L, Erdmann MV, and HP Possingham (2012). Achieving fisheries and conservation objectives within Marine Protected Areas: zoning the Raja Ampat MPA Network. TNC, Asia-Pacific Marine Program. Report 131.

• Huffard CL, Wilson J, Hitipeuw C, Rotinsulu C, Mangubhai S, Erdmann MV, Adnyana W, Barber P, Manuputty J, Mongdong M, Purba G, Rhodes K, and H Toha (2012). Ecosystem based management in the Bird's Head Seascape Indonesia: turning science into action. BHS Ecosystem Based Management Program: Conservation International, The Nature Conservancy, and World Wide Fund for Nature Indonesia. Bali, Indonesia. 40 pp.

• Erdmann MV, Merrill PR, Mongdong M, Arsyad I, Harahap Z, Pangalila R, Elverawati R, and Baworo P. (2004). Building effective co-management systems for decentralized protected areas management in Indonesia: Bunaken National Park case study. NRM III, Jakarta, Indonesia. 147 pp.

• Erdmann MV, Merrill PR, Mongdong M, and I Arsyad (2004). Developing a decentralized user fee system for sustainable conservation financing of Bunaken National Marine Park. In: Jara R, Alcala A, Kenchington R, and Magpayo R (eds.) Proc 2nd International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Management Symposium (ITMEMS2). Dept of Environment and Natural Resources, Quezon City, Philippines. Pp. 420-429.

• Erdmann MV, Merrill PR, Mongdong M, Wowiling M, Pangalila R and I Arsyad (2004). The Bunaken National Marine Park co-management initiative. In: Jara R, Alcala A, Kenchington R, and Magpayo R (eds.) Proc 2nd International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Management Symposium (ITMEMS2). Dept of Environment and Natural Resources, Quezon City, Philippines. Pp. 325-328 

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