Indonesian coral reefs comprise the largest and most diverse coral reef ecosystem on the planet, but at the same time, they are among the most threatened due to mounting human- and climate change-related stressors. In the last few decades, many coral reefs in the region have been significantly degraded by a range of activities and disturbances, including destructive fishing, coral mining, sedimentation, and recently, by warm temperature anomalies causing coral bleaching. For Indonesia, whose population is spread across an archipelago of islands, and where millions of people depend on coral reefs for food and livelihood, the degradation of coral reefs represents a serious threat to the economy of the nation.
In recognition of the significant economic value of Indonesian coral reefs and the high dependency of Indonesian people on reef resources, several management efforts involving a variety of programs, especially the Coral Reef Rehabilitation and Management Program (COREMAP), have been ongoing since 1998. A new regional program called the CTI-CFF (Coral Triangle Initiative for Coral Reefs, Fisheries, and Food Security) emerged in 2009 and is also focused on protecting our invaluable resources. Despite these and other management efforts, ongoing and emerging challenges relating to the protection and sustainable use of these resources remain to be resolved, and will require strategic management actions based on strong scientific research and principles.
Recognizing the urgent need to provide and share scientific data and information to improve coral reef management, the Indonesian Coral Reef Society (INCRES), in collaboration with the Research & Development Center for Marine, Coastal, and Small Islands (MaCSI), Hasanuddin University, have joined forces to jointly publish the Journal of Indonesian Coral Reefs (JICoR). This is the first journal especially dedicated to and focused on publishing interdisciplinary research related to Indonesian coral reefs.
This first volume of JICoR covers a number of crucial issues pertaining to coral reefs, particularly examples of strategies for coral reef management , the status of coral reef charismatic species, marine protected areas, coral biology, coral diseases, coral reef ecology, and socio-economic aspects of coral reefs to highlight some of the contributions. We hope that the presence of JICoR will enrich and progress academic research related to Indonesian coral reefs, and become an invaluable repository of knowledge for the development of basic and applied research, as well as a source of strategic and unbiased information for improving coral reef management in Indonesia.
Prof. Jamaluddin Jompa, Ph.D