Interdisciplinary science to support North Sea marine management: lessons learned and future demands

S. Degraer*, V. Van Lancker, T.A.G.P. Van Dijk, S.N.R. Birchenough, B. De Witte, M. Elliott, S. Le Bot, H. Reiss, V. Stelzenmüller, S. Van Gaever, E. Balian, D. Cox, F. Hernandez, G. Lacroix, H. Lindeboom, J. Reubens, K. Soetaert

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The expected increase of maritime activities in the North Sea and the growing awareness of its natural environmental value require enhanced science-based environmental advice for more efficient and effective marine management. The North Sea Open Science Conference organised by the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences and the Belgian Biodiversity Platform in 2016 aimed to take stock of the present-day scientific knowledge on the North Sea ecosystem, its interactions with human activities and its management. The conference was structured along three themes: (1) ‘the scientific backbone of the North Sea ecosystem: adequacy of the knowledge base?’, (2) ‘A new era in environmental monitoring and assessment: what is at stake?’, and (3) ‘Sustainability: one for all, all for one?’. Focusing on ‘open science’, we welcomed about 200 participants from around the North Sea with different backgrounds and interests in environmental sciences. The participants were challenged to reflect on current and future challenges for the North Sea management and, in particular, to explore possible nature-friendly solutions for addressing these challenges during a series of introductory oral (69) and poster (59) presentations, and World Café and Fish Bowl participatory sessions. The participants agreed on six main actions to (1) provide a solid scientific base for marine management decisions; (2) develop society-driven research; (3) increase interdisciplinary science; (4) recognise the need for system knowledge; (5) improve communication, knowledge exchange, and collective implementation of scientific knowledge; and (6) build integrated knowledge bases. For each of these, concrete action points were identified, and this review gives the most important and relevant ones for creating the knowledge base and managerial framework for a sustainable North Sea.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages11
JournalHydrobiologia
Volume845
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

Keywords

  • Integrated knowledge bases
  • Interdisciplinary science
  • Science-based management
  • Science-policy-stakeholder communication
  • Society-driven research
  • System knowledge

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Interdisciplinary science to support North Sea marine management: lessons learned and future demands'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Degraer, S., Van Lancker, V., Van Dijk, T. A. G. P., Birchenough, S. N. R., De Witte, B., Elliott, M., ... Soetaert, K. (2019). Interdisciplinary science to support North Sea marine management: lessons learned and future demands. Hydrobiologia, 845(1). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10750-019-04109-9