Towards sustainable governance of Baltic marine space

Coordinator: Michael Gilek, Södertörn University
Total budget: EUR 2.0 million
Duration: 3 years, 1.4.2015-31.3.2018

Summaries of annual reports:
BONUS BALTSPACE year 2 report
BONUS BALTSPACE year 1 report

Maritime spatial planning has attained prominence recently in the Baltic Sea region as the key instrument to coordinate and thus enable the growing use of marine resources and space, while safeguarding the good state of marine environment. Both ambitions are expressed in policies across all levels, such as the EU Blue Growth Strategy and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Achieving these ambitions depends on different forms of integration across various policies, sectors, stakeholders, ecological and geopolitical scales and scientific disciplines. However, there is a need for more research on what promotes and constrains integration of maritime spatial planning at national, cross-border and pan-Baltic levels, and, based on this knowledge, on how planning approaches and tools can be improved.

Hence, the project aims to:
Provide science-based approaches and tools to clarify and improve the capacity of maritime spatial planning as a policy integrator and thereby enhance the capabilities of society to respond to current and future challenges directed to the Baltic Sea region. Research in BONUS BALTSPACE will be based on a common interdisciplinary framework to examine in-depth case studies, which exemplify critical integration challenges, as well as serve as the basis for development of new integrated approaches and tools. Through continuous knowledge brokerage with peer groups and other research projects, it is anticipated that outcomes will make significant contributions towards sustainable governance of Baltic marine space.

Keywords: maritime spatial planning, environmental governance, ecosystem approach, blue growth, policy integration

Partners: Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Lithuania, Poland

Introductory article: see page 5 of BONUS in Brief May 2015