[Coral-List] Help -- Origin of of the term "Paper Parks" -- Coral-List Digest, Vol 74, Issue 30

Gregor Hodgson gregorh at reefcheck.org
Wed Oct 29 12:09:20 EDT 2014

Peter ‹ now I am curiousŠ.. In your recent post you attributed the term
paper parks to: "When Graeme Kelleher first coined the term 'paper park' in
approx 1990, some 90% of MPAs were effectively unprotected." Your post
raised the question of  who really coined this helpful termŠ.

My 1990 presentation on "paper parks" focusing on marine protected areas was
published in an obscure location so it is not surprising no one heard of

Hodgson, G. (1992) An alternative to paper parks. In Proceedings of the
International Conference on Conservation of Tropical Biodiversity, Kuala
Lumpur 12-16 June, 1990, eds. S. K. Yap and S. W. Lee, pp. 158-165. Malayan
Nature Society, Kuala Lumpur.

But knowing how the world really works i.e. all things terrestrial go first
-- I assumed there must be a prior reference to paper parks to these, and a
quick search revealed that the brilliant Norman Myers referred to "paper
parks" in his address at his alma mater UC Berkeley on May 1, 1986. I'm
guessing I heard the term from him about that time.


But perhaps some coral lister who used the term earlier or an enterprising
grad student with more refined search skills than I can figure out who
really coined the term "paper parks" with reference to terrestrial (one
would think the late 1970s?) and marine parks. Then we can correctly credit
this common sense and useful term. There are lots of incorrect attributions

Gregor Hodgson

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