The International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI) is an informal partnership of governments, international organisations, non-governmental organisations and scientists. It was established in 1994, after coral reefs were recognised and accorded a high priority for protection in Agenda 21, at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development.

Derawa, Wakatobi - Pelayo Salinas de Leon, 2006

ICRI recognised the need for a coordination of research and management efforts across all relevant institutions to carry out its urgent recommendations to save the world’s reefs. ICRI acts as a catalyst to develop awareness of the need to protect reefs and to create linkages and programs to manage and conserve them.

At the international level, ICRI operates to ensure that the issues affecting coral reefs are raised and considered in development, implementation and review by the widest possible range of international programs and forums. However, most effective reef management will be based on community commitment and understanding of need to ensure the long term sustainability of reef ecosystems, natural resource use management and conservation at the local level.

The International Coral Reef Action Network (ICRAN) was established by the founding partners (United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), WorldFish Center, World Resources Institute (WRI), UNEP-World Conservation Monitoring Center (WCMC), Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN), International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI) Secretariat, Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL), as a public-private response to the ICRI Call to Action, and to help implement the ICRI Framework for Action, the internationally agreed blueprint for conservation of coral reefs.