The European Maritime Spatial Planning Platform -
A service for Member States to share relevant knowledge and experiences on Maritime Spatial Planning
The European MSP Platform is an information and communication gateway designed to offer support to all EU Member States in their efforts to implement Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in the years to come. With the adoption of the EU Directive on Maritime Spatial Planning (2014/89/EU), all coastal EU Member States are required to prepare cross-sectoral maritime spatial plans by 2021.
Funded by the EU Directorate General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE), the European MSP Platform acts as the central exchange forum for the rich knowledge generated in past, current and upcoming MSP processes and projects. This will allow officials, planners and other stakeholders interested in MSP to build on what is already available, avoid duplication of efforts, assist in capacity building and foster development of new practices.
Our approach for the European MSP Platform is based on the following basic principles:
- give and take
- knowing who knows – to connect the right people
- personal approach – to act as your trusted partner
- find specifics through a broad resource
- a service to all EU Member States
What we offer
A dedicated team of experts
The EU MSP Platform is operated via a dedicated team with offices in all European sea-basins. Our experts continuously draw together information on MSP experience, funding and training opportunities as well as relevant events from across Europe. The information is then made available in various interactive, easy-to-use formats readily accessible through this website.
Our contact points are continuously available to offer personal advice and act as your trusted partner in MSP-related efforts. We are happy to gather and share experience with you in the formats which suit your specific needs. On the basis of received information requests, we arrange different types of meetings, be it expert round tables, workshops or seminars. We also prepare short info briefs on specific topics related to MSP based on available practices and projects. Simply get in touch with us via the contact information found on our Team page to discuss on how we can best assist you.
Our team includes a central office in Berlin, a European Commission liaison office in Brussels, and help desks for each of the European sea-basins. The central office coordinates all activities and services of the European MSP platform, including technical studies, updating resources, designing delivery formats and ensuring continuous information exchange among team members. In addition, the central office assists the European Commission in all organisational aspects of the Member States Expert Group meetings as well as the European Commission workshops and conferences related to MSP.
MSP-Platform.eu - An interactive information gateway
This website provides a diverse array of knowledge and resources drawn from existing MSP processes and projects. We continuously expand and update the website to reflect the dynamic process of MSP development throughout Europe.
We invite you to explore the following:
- MSP Country Information showing the status on MSP processes in each coastal EU Member State as well as Sea basin overviews
- Practical Experiences stored and searchable through a multi-filter database
- An overview of previous and ongoing MSP Projects and their outputs
- EU-wide and national funding opportunities
- MSP training programmes and workshops
- An extensive FAQ section
- Future and past events
- News and updates on MSP on our website and via our newsletter
User guidance is available to help navigate the diverse resources we provide.
Question & Answer service
We are available to quickly and accurately respond to your requests for advice and questions regarding MSP. Our access to a range of MSP experts allows us to provide answers from diverse disciplines which reflect the latest developments in MSP. Sea-basin specific questions are directed to the appropriate sea-basin help-desk, which are composed to cover the language needs of the respective region.
Developed answers include relevant examples from practical MSP experiences, as found in our Practices Database and overview of MSP projects. We also make generalized versions of submitted questions and answers available in our FAQ section to continue sharing the collective MSP knowledge base.
Technical Studies - filling identified knowledge gaps
Drawing from the diversity of approaches to MSP across Europe, studies are conducted on topics which enhance MSP implementation and contribute to the collective knowledge base.
MSP Data Study
The 'MSP Data Study - Evaluation of data and knowledge gaps to implement MSP' covered data and information needs for MSP, recognizing that these may be different across European sea basins. The successful development and implementation of MSP relies on the availability of and access to sound spatial information on the marine environment, as well as current and possible future maritime human activities. The study investigated actual MSP information needs, focusing on what planners need to know and how data can be translated and used to provide this information; technical aspects to address issues such as the provision of data through data infrastructures; converting raw data into useful formats for planning; and how data can be shared across borders. The study has been published by the European Commission and can be downloaded here:
MSP for Blue Growth Study
The second study prepared by the EU MSP Platform for the European Commission, MSP for Blue Growth, focused on three tasks:
- Developing a methodology for a sea basin vision
- An investigation of current and future potential spatial demands of key maritime sectors
- Developing a manual on indicators for MSP
The study was published by the European Commission's Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME) in April 2018 and has been integrated into the EU MSP Platform website. Individual study outputs can be accessed via the FAQ pages on MSP Visions and Indicators, Monitoring and Evaluation, and sector fiches can be found in the website section MSP Sectors.
Over the course of 2018, the EU MSP Platform will conduct two studies, on the topic of Spatial conflicts in MSP: How to identify and address conflicting maritime spatial demands? and How to conduct cross-border consultation on MSP plans within the EU and with EU MS neighbours.