Arafura and Timor Seas Forum (ATSEF)

The Arafura and Timor Seas

Geographical coverage

Geographical scale of the assessment Regional
Country or countries covered Australia, Timor-Leste, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea
Any other necessary information or explanation for identifying the location of the assessment, including site or region name

Conceptual framework, methodology and scope

Assessment objectives

To assist in achieving sustainable development and poverty alleviation in the Arafura and Timor Seas region, particularly for the coastal communities, who depend upon marine and fisheries resources for their livelihood. There are five priority foci, to which the forum directs its research activities:

  • Preventing, deterring and eliminating illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Arafura and Timor Seas.

  • Sustaining fish stocks, sustaining marine habitats and coastal and marine biodiversity.

  • Assisting sustainable and/or alternative livelihoods for coastal and indigenous communities.

  • Understanding the marine, coastal, and catchments system dynamics of the seas.

  • Improving capacity for data information, management and sharing between the littoral nations of the seas.

Mandate for the assessment

Conceptual framework and/or methodology used for the assessment

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA)

URL or copy of conceptual framework developed or adapted

System(s) assessed

  • Marine
  • Coastal

Species groups assessed

Ecosystem services/functions assessed


  • Food
  • Genetic resources
  • Raw materials


Supporting Services/Functions

  • Habitat maintenance
  • Maintainence of genetic diversity

Cultural Services

Scope of assessment includes

Drivers of change in systems and services


Impacts of change in services on human well-being


Options for responding/interventions to the trends observed


Explicit consideration of the role of biodiversity in the systems and services covered by the assessment


Timing of the assessment

Year assessment started

Year assessment finished

If ongoing, year assessment is anticipated to finish

Periodicity of assessment

Assessment outputs


The Timor-Leste Coastal/Marine Habitat Mapping for Tourism and Fisheries Development Project: Executive Summaries (2009).

Communication materials (e.g. brochure, presentations, posters, audio-visual media)

Journal publications

Training materials

Other documents/outputs

Tools and processes

Tools and approaches used in the assessment

Process used for stakeholder engagement in the assessment process and which component

Key stakeholder groups engaged

The number of people directly involved in the assessment process

Incorporation of scientific and other types of knowledge

Supporting documentation for specific approaches, methodology or criteria developed and/or used to integrate knowledge systems into the assessment

Assessment reports peer reviewed



Accessibility of data used in assessment

Policy impact

Impacts the assessment has had on policy and/or decision making, as evidenced through policy references and actions

Independent or other review on policy impact of the assessment


Lessons learnt for future assessments from these reviews

Capacity building

Capacity building needs identified during the assessment

Actions taken by the assessment to build capacity

How have gaps in capacity been communicated to the different stakeholders

Knowledge generation

Gaps in knowledge identified from the assessment

How gaps in knowledge have been communicated to the different stakeholders

Additional relevant information