The second edition of the International Forum for Marine Spatial Planning (MSPforum) took place on 26-29 March 2019, organised by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE) and UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC-UNESCO). This was an excellent opportunity to exchange MSP practices and tools with over 50 MSP practitioners from more than 20 nationalities. Three panel discussions on the status of MSP in the Indian Ocean, stakeholder engagement and the sustainable blue economy allowed participants to learn about the experiences of national practitioners on issues related to transboundary MSP, funding, the science-policy interface and economic growth.
Three technical workshops on land-sea interaction and integrated coastal zone management, sectors and stakeholders involved in MSP and the blue economy were organized in an interactive format to help build new knowledge to inform, guide and support MSP at global scale. An innovative approach to visiting and exchanging with local stakeholders was tested during the forum in a half day dedicated field session. The forum participants split into groups to meet representatives of public administration, energy, fisheries, tourism and civil society, to understand their needs and problems within the processes of MSP and the blue economy, their synergies with other stakeholder groups and more generally their relationship with the ocean. The groups then presented their findings and results during the afternoon’s plenary session.
The next MSPforums are planned in Vigo, Spain, and Riga, Latvia, in May and November 2019 respectively.
Access the report of the MSP Global Opening Conference here.