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Collaborative Knowledge Exchange Platform for Land-Sea Integration (COASTAL)


COASTAL supports strategic coastal-rural planning by problem-driven engagement of stakeholders, including administrations, NGOs and business entrepreneurs. These interacted to identify problems and opportunities, design mental models for holistic solutions, and test scientific concepts. What makes COASTAL different is the processing into evidence-based policy models, increasing the practical value business and policy recommendations. A well-balanced combination of tools is used to take the short- and long-term impacts of policy decisions and business investments on coastal and rural development into account.

The socio-economic impact of this ambitious project should not be underestimated. At the local, regional and national scale the implementation of EU regulatory frameworks aimed at mitigation and adaptation to the impacts of climate change, sustainable food production and fair use of increasingly scarce or uncertain resources such as water, space and energy. Fragmentation of knowledge, data and administrative responsibilities is known to impede the effectiveness and efficiency of environmental decision making. This is particularly true for complex systems involving multiple socio-environmental interactions such as the coastal regions participating in COASTAL.

Systems Thinking and modelling is worth the effort as it helps identify opportunities for economic development which are overlooked otherwise, spot tipping points and key policy levers, and avoid unanticipated problems. A general, very positive observation made during the final event was the strong commitment expressed by all project partners to continue and apply the COASTAL approach in their work and activities, despite of the challenging trajectory followed to familiarize themselves with the systems thinking methodology. Phrased otherwise: the project has changed their way of thinking and has a significant impact on their future work and that of their stakeholders.

A durable legacy of the project is ensured through the Knowledge Exchange Platform, linking experts, stakeholders, administrations and key actors with an interest in land-sea interactions and synergistic solutions to problems.  


Project information


Flemish Institute for Technological Research, Belgium


Vlaamse Instelling Voor Technologisch Onderzoek N.V.

Hellenic Centre For Marine Research

Stockholms Universitet

Sintef Ocean As

Institut National De Recherche En Sciences Et Technologies Pour L'environnement Et L'agriculture

Institutul National De Cercetare-Dezvoltare Marina Grigore Antipa

Institutul De Cercetare Pentru Economia Agriculturii Si Dezvoltare Rurala Bucuresti

International Center For Research On The Environment And The Economy

Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior Deinvestigaciones Cientificas

Geonardo Environmental Technologies Ltd

Bluebridge Ostend Science Park

Vlaamse Landmaatschappij Nv

Provinciale Ontwikkelingsmaatschappij West-Vlaanderen

Stiftelsen The Stockholm Environment Institute

Niras Sweden Ab

Campus Roslagen Ab


Asociatia Gal Delta Dunarii

Asociatia Grupul De Actiune Locala Dobrogea Centrala

Touristikes Epichiriseis Messinias Anonimi Etaireia

Idryma Kapetan Vasili Kai Karmen Konstentekopoulou

Anaptyxiakh Messinias Anaptyxiakh Ae

Consejeria De Turismo, Cultura Y Medio Ambiente De La Region De Murcia

Federacion De Cooperativas Agrariasde Murcia S Coop

Chambre Regionale D'agriculture Nouvelle -Aquitaine

Haven Oostende Autonoom Gemeentelijk Havenbedrijf

Federation Regionale D'agriculturebiologique Nouvelle Aquitaine

Vlaams Instituut Voor De Zee Vzw

Global Utmaning

Source of funding

The project was funded by the EU H2020 research & innovation programme under grant nr 773782

Reference information


Published in Climate-ADAPT Dec 12 2022   -   Last Modified in Climate-ADAPT Dec 12 2023

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