The coastal seas are regions of intense commercial and non-commercial use by multiple groups of our society. An aspect, which superimposes these two types of use, is the function of the sea as reactor and depository for the discharge of substances, either of natural or anthropogenic sources, from the catchment basins of the riparian countries.
The ecosystem approach for the integrated management of human activities is a key tool in EU coastal and marine policies to foster marine sustainability through a sustainable use of marine goods and service needs. The ecosystem-based approach and the ecosystem service concept integrate European coastal and marine policy. “By applying an ecosystem-based approach to the management of human activities while enabling a sustainable use of marine goods and services, priority should be given to achieving or maintaining good environmental status in the Community’s marine environment, to continuing its protection and preservation, and to preventing subsequent deterioration“ (MSFD, 2008). The concept of ecosystem services allows to quantify and to visualize the benefits of a good environmental status for the society and increases the public acceptance of policy implementation measures. It further integrates natural sciences with socio-economics.
The important functions of sediments in the Baltic Sea will serve as a case study. The integration and provision of spatial data as a scientific basis for the implementation of major marine and coastal policies (Marine Strategy Framework Directive, Water Framework Directive, and Habitat Directive) is one key aspect to govern a multi used area.
To apply and integrate natural scientific data, model simulation results and socio-economic aspects, the scholars will be taught in different modules related to the functioning of marine environments and their possible response to human impacts and their governance.
At the end of the course a one day shipboard training on the RV Elisabeth Mann Borgese will be conducted by the scholars. The scholar will be involved in cruise planning from the initial scientific idea or objective to planning of stations, ship time etc. to data processing, get to know the scientific principles as well as the logistic constrains of conducting a research cruise.