© Martina Lippuner / WWF-Africa

Member Spotlight

The Smithsonian Institution (SI)

The Smithsonian Institution joined the Global Mangrove Alliance at the end of 2019. The world’s largest museum, education, and research complex, encompassing 19 museums, 9 research centers and the National Zoo, the Institution was founded in 1846 in Washington D.C., USA with the purpose of increasing and diffusing knowledge.


SI has been working on mangrove research and conservation for decades. They have multiple research groups that work around the world and are extensively involved in the Caribbean and Mesoamerican reef (MAR) system. Most recently, Smithsonian researchers in collaboration with MAR Fund led the development of the “Regional Strategy for Mangrove Management, Conservation, Restoration and Monitoring in the Mesoamerican Reef 2020-2025.” This stakeholder driven process aimed to develop long-term action plans that will result in greater mangrove restoration and protections at the local and regional scale (read more). The Mesoamerican Mangrove and Seagrass Network, currently managed by SI, is a digital platform aimed to facilitate greater communication between different stakeholder groups, and will be an important tool in supporting management and conservation efforts in the region.

In addition to the MAR system, The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center has previously teamed up with the University of Maryland to study how mangrove habitat has shifted northward through Florida’s coastlines due to climate change. You can read more about the study on SI’s website here. To find out more about SI’s other work with mangroves, check out their website.


The Institution has also recently released over 50,000 digitized archival documents and images to the public, including photographs, videos, and botanical information on various mangrove species. The Archive can be accessed online here.

Smithsonian Institution Experts:



Steven Canty: cantys@si.edu

To learn about another Global Mangrove Alliance member, click here.