Marine ecosystems evolve under many interconnected and area-specific pressures. To fulfill society's intensifying and diversifying needs while ensuring ecologically sustainable development, more effective marine spatial planning and broader-scope management of marine resources is necessary. Integrated ecological–economic fisheries models (IEEFMs) of marine systems are needed to evaluate impacts and sustainability of potential management actions and understand, and anticipate ecological, economic, and social dynamics at a range of scales from local to national and regional.
To make these models most effective, it is important to determine how model characteristics and methods of communicating results influence the nature of the advice that can be provided and the impact on decisions taken by managers. This article presents a global review and comparative evaluation of 31 IEEFM´s applied to marine fisheries and marine ecosystem resources to identify the characteristics that determine their usefulness, effectiveness and implementation.