In December 2010, the first UNESCO marine World Heritage meeting brought all 43 Marine World Heritage site managers together with a selection of leading marine scientists and practitioners whose work has been instrumental for marine conservation and management to establish a productive exchange of success stories and management experiences among marine World Heritage site managers. One of the take-home messages from the gathering was the value of regional cooperation among sites to leverage data, resources and lessons
learned for improved management and enforcement. Two of the preeminent models of such regional collaboration showcased at the meeting were the sister-site agreement between the world’s two largest heritage sites, Papahanaumokuakea and the Phoenix Islands, and the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape, centered around the region’s four marine World Heritage sites: Malpelo, Galápagos, Cocos, and Coiba. In addition to the value of regional collaboration, the need for more and larger marine World Heritage sites was clear.