Supported by EU policy, marine spatial planning (MSP) has become the tool of choice for many countries in implementing both sustainable maritime development and ecosystem-based management. With many countries already applying MSP and others well on track with national MSP programmes, this is a good time to take stock of MSP developments and question its current ambitions and successes. Questions must be asked regarding its ultimate objectives, for example how it is linked to an ecosystem approach to management, how it might facilitate blue growth and promote ecological sustainability, and how it contributes to more inclusive and participatory maritime governance.
This session aims to open up perspectives on both marine spatial planning and integrated coastal management (ICM) from a critical systems perspective, asking how MSP is conceived (visions), what knowledge it draws on (inclusiveness), and how progress and success in MSP could be measured and assessed (indicators and evaluation). A key focus will be on indicators, including both natural and social science rationales, and looking at existing approaches as well as gaps. The session also invites contributions reflecting on MSP at a meta-level, considering its nature and where and how it needs to be broadened for sustainable management of the seas.
Presentations could focus on: