Context

There are 425 Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Sites) in the Mediterranean region covering nearly nine million hectares of wetlands. They are ecosystems of major importance for all countries and in particular for local citizens.

The MedWet Initiative encourages and supports governments to adopt policies and implement actions on the ground in favor of the conservation and the sustainable use of Mediterranean wetlands, in particular Ramsar Sites. Wetland managers have a key role to play on the ground.

© MedSea

In order to support them, MedWet is building the Mediterranean Ramsar Site Managers Network (MeRSiM-Net). MedWet overall purpose is to promote a process of changing policies and practices through the establishment of a successful network of people committed to wetland conservation and sustainable use.
The Network is set-up as a share-and-learn network. Wetland managers come together, with an interest toadvance their conservation and sustainable use agendas. They learn together and share their experiences.

Our Objectives

The MeRSiM-Net contributes to achieving the objectives of the Ramsar Convention to establish and maintain comprehensive, effectively managed, and ecologically representative national and regional systems of Wetlands of International Importance. These systems collectively, inter alia through regional networks, contribute to achieving the conservation and wise use of wetland ecosystems. This should significantly reduce the current rate of wetland loss at the global, regional, national and sub-national levels. A development that will represent a significant contribution to achieving, by 2030, the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The objectives of the Network can be summarised as follows:

To promote the feeling and experience of belonging to the Mediterranean Ramsar Sites ‘ethos’.

To facilitate exchanges of knowledge and experiences concerning the situation of and management practices in Mediterranean Ramsar Sites.

To facilitate mutual support in terms of technical advice and assistance in problem solving.

To encourage the twinning of Mediterranean Ramsar Sites.

We established the MeRSiM Network to support managers of Ramsar Sites in the Mediterranean region by providing them opportunities to exchange experiences and knowledge, to promote their wise use efforts and to enhance the conservation status of their sites. It is by working together that we can make a positive difference and real change on the ground for our precious Mediterranean wetlands.
Alessio Satta
Coordinator of the Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative (MedWet)
Bringing together people involved in the management of Ramsar Sites was very helpful along the Danube river course and across a large country like France. Using a similar approach to unite the forces, sharing the know-how and bringing together the good practices across the Mediterranean biodiversity hotspot is a promising MedWet programme, one that will hopefully become an example for other parts of the world.
SALATHE Tobias
Senior Advisor for Europe at the Ramsar Convention Secretariat

Our Activities

Knowledge Sharing Platform​


Knowledge sharing is a key driver for the Network development. MeRSiM provides the opportunity to Ramsar Site managers and other stakeholders to benefit from lessons learnt from successful experiences and about problems encountered, by taking advantage of best practices and achievements done in the Mediterranean.

Mediterranean Ramsar Sites
Bi-annual Forum

The Forum will be an opportunity to assess the effectiveness of the Ramsar Convention in the Mediterranean region. Thematic seminars and parallel sessions will discuss key issues and exchange experiences related to wetland conservation and management. The forum will be organised when resources become available.

Capacity building


Through physical workshop and several webinars per year, MeRSiM will reinforce capacities of managers and National Focal Points to effectively manage their Ramsar sites, and increase knowledge to improve their ability to solve the problems they face and to achieve their conservation objectives.

Advocacy for site conservation
and wise use

Advocating for the conservation and effective management of wetlands through producing briefings for decision-makers and the donor community and attending international/regional/national meetings and events to present the experience of the MeRSiM.

Twinning of Mediterranean
Ramsar sites

Two or more Ramsar sites in the Mediterranean region could be “twinned” to facilitate cooperation and active exchange of experiences through exchange visits between members with a defined programme about issues to be observed/investigated.

Guidelines on sustainable use practices of wetlands

The MeRSiM will evaluate the potential to transfer and share experiences and will identify which factors facilitate or hindered these transfers. The Guidelines will also highlight best practices in Mediterranean wetlands. Members will be invited to contribute to scientific/technical papers/publications about conservation and sustainable use issues that they have investigated, experienced or became aware of in their countries.

Our fields of work

The main field related to Mediterranean wetlands and on which the MeRSiM works.

  • Climate change
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Environmental education
  • Management and governance
  • Monitoring and mapping
  • Socio-economic and ecological benefits
  • Climate change
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Environmental education
  • Management and governance
  • Monitoring and mapping
  • Socio-economic and ecological benefits

The MeRSiM-Net is comprised of legal entities that manage Ramsar sites in the Mediterranean area or are interested in the management or the establishment of these and wish to contribute to the establishment and strengthening of the Network. The legal entities are represented by their acting legal representatives or any other persons whose authorisations have been notified to the MedWet Secretariat by the Ramsar National Focal Points.

How it works and
Who is eligible?

How to become
a member of
the Network?

The management entities of Ramsar sites that have filed their applications pursuant to the conditions specified by the internal rules may become members.