Decentralization in the Egyptian Coastal Management
Human impacts, coupled with global climate change are placing increased pressures on coastal environments.
During the last three decades, in response to the growing problems of coastal zones, many countries have
introduced Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) as a mechanism to effectively manage the coastal zone
and the conflicts of interest arise from competition for coastal space and resources. However many ICZM
schemes in the developing countries have failed at the implementation stage as a result of inadequate institutional
and management capacity, as well as a lack of decentralization for the community in implementing local
integrated coastal management. Hence, decentralization of ICZM is necessary to deal with the extensive
geographical problems and the tremendous social and cultural diversity of communities.
Egypt provides an excellent case study of this experience. Since the mid-1990s several attempts have been made
towards decentralization in Egypt, the process is still in its initial stages and needs support to enhance ICZM
This paper reviews ICZM process in Egypt focussing on discussing decentralization in planning and
implementation of ICZM based on interviews with key ICZM actors as well as documentary analysis. It seeks
through a critical evaluation to provide some practical recommendations that could help to enhance the
implementation of ICZM in Egypt.