The basic question formulated for this research is, "To what extent does integrated coastal management make a difference in the development of marine policy?" We examine this question from multiple empirical case studies from the Puget Sound / Georgia Straits region as well as relevant literature.
To the extent that management has been based on integrated coastal plans and processes there has been a modest benefit to marine policy, however, the critical issue is the extent to which integration has been part of planning and more importantly, how management institutions are prepared to utilize such information. Reform of existing management institutions may offer limited opportunities for change. It appears that major reform is needed to ensure adequate response as part of decision making.