Karimunjawa National Park (KNP) was among the first maritime areas recognized in Indonesia as being important for the conservation of marine biodiversity. Economic incentives in the KNP aim to decrease community dependency on wild-captured natural resources and achieve biodiversity and development objectives. Various participatory mechanisms facilitate community involvement in governance, whilst other incentives promoting awareness and support for fishery regulations are being delivered. Monitoring programs have demonstrated some ecological improvements and reductions in destructive fishing in the park over the past five years. The findings demonstrate that MPA policies and regulations can improve the social well-being and political power of fishing communities, particularly when appropriate economic, legal and participatory incentives are provided. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.