The Mediterranean Wetlands Observatory, coordinated by Tour du Valat, Research Institute for the Conservation of Mediterranean wetlands, was established in 2008 within the framework of the Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative: MedWet. This Initiative owes it origins to a call for action made at the 1991 “Grado” conference on Mediterranean wetlands. The Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative has from the start operated under the framework of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, and is formally recognized as a Ramsar Regional Initiative. MedWet brings together 27 Mediterranean and peri-Mediterranean countries, Palestine and a number of organizations and wetland centres that are members of the Initiative.

The Mediterranean Wetlands Observatory was established to address the knowledge gap on the status and trends of wetland ecosystems in the region, and to develop awareness about their multiple values. Its ultimate goal is to improve wetland conservation and wise use by providing information to a broad audience, especially decision-makers and the public at large.

The Mediterranean Wetlands Observatory publishes papers and reports on the status and trends of Mediterranean wetlands to inform actors and decision makers. The first Mediterranean Wetlands Outlook report (MWO1) issued in 2012, was the first regional indicator-based assessment of the state of wetlands and the issues they face. This second Mediterranean Wetlands Outlook report (MWO2) updates the situation for Mediterranean wetlands since 2012. This report issued at the Convention’s 13th Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP13, Dubai, October 2018).