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EU MSP Platform Conferences & Workshops

The MSP Platform organises several gatherings each year  as part of our mission to support the exchange of knowledge and experiences on MSP throughout Europe. These include conferences focused on a particular MSP-relevant theme, which are organised on behalf of the European Commission. We also hold workshops upon request to bring together smaller groups of experts to hold in-depth discussions on specific topics and develop solutions to emerging MSP challenges. Do you have a particular issue that you would like to discuss with experts and MSP planners? Please contact us at (info[at]maritime-spatial-planning[dot]ec[dot]europa[dot]eu) for assistance.

On this page you will find information about our upcoming conferences & workshops, as well as archived materials from past events. Additional events organised by diverse institutions can be found on our All Events page

Past conferences & workshops

The European MSP Stakeholder Conference - Planning for the future of Europe’s Marine Space - took place on 14-15 of June in Brest, France. The conference was split in to two halves, on the first day, the event focused on the achievements of Marine Spatial Planning in the EU since the adoption of the MSP Directive in 2014, the challenges encountered in the implementation of MSP and the lessons learnt. The second day focused on the future of MSP until 2030, how the next generation of Plans can respond to climate change, the importance of MSP as an enabler for renewable energy and to meet the goal of 30% for Marine Protected Areas as designated by the EU Biodiversity Strategy. The event attracted more than 450 participants in person and online, from different countries, and sectors: local and national representatives, European Commission, academics, maritime industries, NGOs, members of the AM MSP team. Importantly, this event marked the first occasion that the European MSP Community could come together since the Global Pandemic – and it was wonderful to see all our friends and colleagues! To access the conference recording click on the event title.


In May 2021, we held a joint webinar with the SIMAtlantic project and the Assistance Mechanism for the Atlantic Action Plan, looking at transboundary issues in the European Atlantic region and how we might develop a set of shared principles for maritime spatial planning (MSP). The event was part of the European Maritime Day ‘In My Country’ programme and delegates represented MSP authorities, research institutions and a wide range of MSP stakeholders. There were presentations on the characteristics of the European Atlantic region and its progress on MSP; on data use and sharing, land-sea interactions and the blue economy; on the experience of the Baltic region and the development of an Atlantic Vision; and discussions hosted by award-winning Irish journalist, Karen Coleman. To access the recording and more information click on the event title.


This webinar was jointly organised by the AM EU MSP Platform and the MSP MED project. The event was held to deal with the coexistence and synergetic relationship between the economic, social, environmental, and cultural components of “spatial efficiency” at sea. Using case studies, the webinar presented different points of view towards building integrated and cohesive planning approaches and new management tools in MSP, including cooperation among Mediterranean EU countries and with Southern Mediterranean countries.


The European MSP Platform organised an online event dedicated to communication tools, strategies and examples of successful communication initiatives for Maritime Spatial Planning advancement in Europe. In partnership with IOC UNESCO MSP global initiative, this event reached stakeholders well beyond European Member states with participants from Morocco, China, Iran, Norway and Iceland. To access all presentations click on the event title.

MSP for Blue Growth Webinar Series

The EU MSP Platform organised a webinar series on the MSP for Blue Growth Study. 

The 2018 study gives information on how Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) can assist Member States to foster the potential for sustainable Blue Growth. Maritime spatial planning represents a key instrument for Blue Growth and can contribute to the aim of giving a boost to economic growth on the basis of a new maritime paradigm founded in sustainability, innovation, competitiveness and knowledge. The MSP for Blue Growth study explores the multi-faceted relationship between the two evolving concepts and provides practical, implementation-oriented outputs. The study was developed by the EU MSP Platform consortium for the European Commission, as part of their services to assist EU Member States with implementation of the EU MSP Directive (2014/89/EU).

Each webinar in this series introduced participants to one of the three study components:

  • Workshop
  • Gran Canaria, Spain
Workshop MSP for Islands
A workshop was organised on the subject "Maritime Spatial Planning for Islands" on the 11th of September 2018 in Gran Canaria, Spain. As highlighted during the MSP Conference "Addressing Land-Sea Interactions" (Malta, June 2017), particular challenges and opportunities exist for the development and implementation of MSP and sustainable Blue Growth in island contexts. Workshop participants engaged in active knowledge and experience-exchange during interactive sessions to: • Identify common challenges and opportunities in developing and implementing MSP and delivering Blue Growth in island contexts • Discuss the socio-economic and specific environmental pressures faced by island communities and the (potential) role of MSP and Blue Growth • Highlight good practices with MSP that could be applied to islands contexts Access more information, including the workshop report, by clicking on the event title.


The EU MSP Platform and OCTO: Open Communications for the Ocean are co-organising a webinar on cumulative impact tools, as a follow-up from the expert roundtable on the same topic, held on 18 January 2018. For more information click on the event title.


  • Workshop
  • Portorož, Slovenia
Workshop on MSP in Small Sea Spaces
The workshop, organised by the EU MSP Platform on behalf of the European Commission, aimed to provide a forum for discussion and exchange on how to apply MSP in small sea spaces. Specific challenges emerge when planning small sea jurisdictions or when dealing with small marine areas in the framework of a multi-scale, nested approach. In both cases, high concentration of uses, intense land-sea interactions, limited availability of free space to couple with sector dynamics and future needs and relevance of transboundary cooperation (among countries and among regions within a country), can pose real challenges to planners. The workshop is aimed at national MSP authorities, representatives of sub-national authorities, planners and other experts dealing with MSP in small sea spaces. Based on a wide exchange of practices and interactive discussions, workshop participants will contribute to identify challenges and specific elements characterising maritime spatial planning in small sea spaces. To access the agenda and presentations click on the event title.


  • Expert roundtable
  • Bucharest, Romania
Expert Roundtable on Romanian MSP Capacity
An expert roundtable was organised to share up-to-date information of on-going research and existing good practices, as well as to support the Romanian MSP authority and involved sectoral ministries. Specific needs from the MSP authority and sectoral ministries were identified beforehand. To access all information click on the event title.


  • Expert roundtable
  • Venice, Italy
Cumulative Impacts Tools Expert Roundtable
An expert roundtable on cumulative impact tools was organised on 18 January in Venice, Italy, bringing together subject experts and tool developers to discuss development of these tools as they relate to MSP. Cumulative impact tools are of particular interest for implementing the ‚ecosystem based approach‘ in MSP, in accordance with the EU MSP Directive. To access the roundtable summary report and presentations click on the event title.


This conference, organised by the EU MSP Platform on behalf of the European Commission, took place on 11-12 October in Brussels, Belgium. The conference was aimed at both MSP practitioners, authorities as well as industry representatives and was attended by Mr. Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries. This conference provided a forum for discussion and exchange, and offered concrete examples and guidelines on how to apply MSP as a tool to support sustainable maritime economic development (‘Blue Growth’). More information about this event including event outputs, click on the event title.


  • Expert roundtable
  • Berlin, Germany
Socio-economic Expert Roundtable
The idea of the round table was to exchange information about on-going research and to gather a better understanding of socio-economics for MSP. Currently research on socio-economic aspects of MSP is still in its infancy and involved researchers may be interested in methodologies and approaches used in other projects. The round table sought to foster a better understanding of these methods and additionally inspire concrete research questions. To access more information about the round table including its outputs click on the event title.


The two-day MSP Conference – Addressing Land-Sea Interactions took place in St. Julian’s, Malta on 15 and 16 June 2017 and was a great success. National experts and MSP practitioners exchanged experiences and knowledge during three interactive sessions focusing on key LSI issues in specific countries / contexts, strengths and weaknesses of sub-national approaches to LSI and the LSI issues faced by participants. A total of 15 presentations were given during the panel sessions ‘Introduction to LSI’, ‘Sub-national approaches to LSI’, ‘National and sea-basin approaches to LSI’ and ‘Sectoral approaches to LSI and specific tools’. To access all information click on the event title.