Combining offshore wind farms, nature conservation and seafood: Lessons from a Dutch community of practice

Marine Policy, Volume 126

Sea Basin(s): 
Year: 
February 2021
Application in MSP: 
Unknown effect
Sectors: 
Aquaculture
Fishery
Nature protection
Offshore renewable energy production
Type of Issue: 
Coexistence of uses
Social aspects
Stakeholders
Type of practice: 
Study
Stage of MSP cycle: 
Analyse spatial aspects
Develop and implement plan

Questions this practice may help answer:

  • How can OWF, nature protection and seafood all coexist?
  • How can Communities of Practices (COPs) be involved in MSP?
  • How to mitigate impacts and optimise benefits of offshore wind farms?

Implementation Context:

This paper was produced within the context of Offshore Wind Farm development and the positive and negative consequences of those installations on other sea uses.

Aspects / Objectives:

This paper explores the role of Communities of Practice (COPs) as a participatory tool for development.  This paper argues that COPs offer a potential way forward. COPs are defined as "groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly" (Wenger 2006).

Method:

Based on a case study of the Dutch Community of Practice North Sea (COPNS), this paper examines the potential contribution of COPs as a tool for stimulating marine multi-use by balancing multiple interests and initiating pilots and learning. The relevance of social learning in marine multi-use settings Is discussed and the concept of COPs introduced, followed by a description of the methodology and a presentation of the COPNS case study. The findings are then discussed, followed by conclusions and recommendations.

Main Outputs / Results:

  • Marine multi-use is more than a mere 'design question' and requires active collaboration from all stakeholders.
  • The Dutch Community of Practice North Sea is a novel approach towards accelerating multi-use in a controversial context.
  • By creating a learning environment in a non-political setting, Communities of Practice foster a culture of cooperation.
  • Ten guidelines for Communities of Practices as an action-oriented tool towards salient marine multi-use practices are proposed.

Transferability:

This article presents the lessons learned from a Dutch community of practices in the Baltic Sea that can inspire other sea regions and countries.

Costs / Funding Source:

This work was supported by the Dutch Ministry of Eco-nomic Affairs under the Policy Support Research Programme Top sectors, theme Living Lab SKIPs [grant BO-34-001-033, 2017] and the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality Policy Support Research Programme Sustainable Food Production, Food Chains and Nature, theme Nature-inclusive Energy [grant BO-43-023.03-002].

Contact person:

nathalie.steins@wur.nl (N.A. Steins), jeroen.veraart@wur.nl (J.A. Veraart), judith.klostermann@wur.nl (J.E.M. Klostermann), marnix. poelman@wur.nl (M. Poelman).

 

[1] E. Wenger, B. Wenger-Trayner, Introduction to communities of practice - a brief overview of the concept and its uses, 2015. https://wenger-trayner.com/introduction-to-communities-of-practice.

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