Data integration and participatory process in developing integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) in the northern Baltic Sea

Journal of Coastal Conservation, volume 25

Abstract: 

The Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) Directive was ratified (2014/89/EU) along the Strategy of the European Union (EU) on the Blue Economy to contribute to the effective management of maritime activities and resources and incorporate the principal elements of Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) (2002/413/EC) into planning at the land-sea interface. There is a need to develop the ICZM approach throughout Europe to realise the potential for both socio-economic and environmental targets set by the EU and national legislations. In this study, we co-developed different approaches for land-sea interactions in four case areas in Estonia and Finland based on the defined characteristics and key interests derived from local or regional challenges by integrating spatial data on human activities and ecology. Furthermore, four ICZM drafts were co-evaluated by stakeholders and the public using online map-based assessment tools (public participatory GIS). The ICZM approaches of the Estonian cases ranged from the diversification of land use to the enhancement of community-based entrepreneurship. The Finnish cases aimed to define the trends for sustainable marine and coastal tourism and introduce the ecosystem service concept in land use planning. During the project activities, we found that increased communication and exchange of local and regional views and values on the prevailing land-sea interactions were important for the entire process. Thereafter, the ICZM plans were applied to the MSP processes nationally, and they support the sustainable development of coastal areas in Estonia and Finland.

Sea Basin(s): 
Country: 
Year: 
August 2021
Application in MSP: 
Taken into account in an MSP process
Sectors: 
Not sector specific
Type of Issue: 
Data
Economic aspects
Environment aspects
Land-sea interactions
Social aspects
Stakeholders
Type of practice: 
Study
Stage of MSP cycle: 
Analyse spatial aspects
Develop and implement plan
Cross-border / trans-national aspect: 
No
Coherence with other processes: 
Integrated Coastal Zone Management

Questions this practice may help answer:

  • How is IZCM related to the MSP process and the European Strategy for the Blue Growth?
  • How is the participatory process relevant in defining ICZM plans?
  • How were the IZCM plans implemented within the official planning processes in both Estonia and Finland?

Implementation Context:

The Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) Directive was ratified (2014/89/EU) pursuant to the Strategy of the European Union (EU) on the Blue Economy to contribute to the effective management of maritime activities and resources and incorporate the principal elements of Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) (2002/413/EC) into planning at the land-sea interface.

Aspects / Objectives:

This study aims to analyse how ICZM can be considered in the MSP processes, while national planning systems can differ from one country to another.  

Method:

Methods for land-sea interactions assessment were developed in four case areas in Estonia and Finland. Data integration enabled the selection of case sites, followed by the preparation of ICZM drafts and public assessment.

Main Outputs / Results:

The work carried out in this study has enabled four ICZM plans (2 case sites in each country) to be defined. The project outputs highlighted that ICZM processes can represent a site-specific collaborative framework with a broad participatory approach.  

Transferability:

This study looks specifically at the cases of Estonia and Finland. Nevertheless, the general conclusions drawn by the authors can inspire other ICZM approaches.

Responsible Entity:

Department of Geography and Geology, University of Turku, Finland

Costs / Funding Source:

This work was funded by the Interreg Central Baltic Programme 2014–2020, European Regional Development Fund (CB354 SustainBaltic), and the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme (R098 Land-Sea-Act).

Contact person:

Reija Hietala: reija.hietala@utu.f