Ecosystem management is an integrative, interdisciplinary, adaptive and collaborative approach to policymaking, planning and management that focuses on the long-term health of an ecosystem. Priority is given to the functioning and stability of the entire ecosystem rather than its specific parts.
The goal of ecosystem management is to sustain or restore ecosystem integrity and biological diversity at all spatial and temporal scales. This is to be attained through scientific understanding of the components and processes of the ecosystem and collaborative decision-making.
Ecosystem management is grounded in the understanding that human activity and physical components are inextricably linked within an ecosystem (Ewert et al. 2004; Randolph 2003, cited in: Butler 2003).