Pan Baltic Scope

Pan Baltic Scope

Project Implementation Period: 
January 2018 - December 2019

 € 3,315,113 

About the Project: 

Pan Baltic Scope was a collaboration between 12 planning authorities and organisations around the Baltic Sea in 2018 and 2019. We worked towards bringing better maritime spatial plans for the Baltic Sea Region.

The objective of Pan Baltic Scope was to achieve coherent national maritime spatial planning in the Baltic Sea region and to build lasting macro-region mechanisms for cross-border MSP cooperation.

The project was designed to support the implementation of the EU MSP directive and the objectives defined in the EU BSR Strategy, Blue economy and EU2020 Strategy as well as the HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan and VASAB Long Term Perspective for the Territorial Development of the Baltic Sea Region.

Project results

Pan Baltic Scope broadly contributed to more coherent national maritime spatial planning in the Baltic Sea region, and to building lasting macro-region mechanisms for cross-border MSP cooperation.

We developed common tools and approaches, built on previous projects and carried out concrete cross-border cooperation that supported national planning solutions. Pan Baltic Scope also contributed to building trust among the project partners – a vital ingredient for cross-border cooperation.

Our Planning Forum based its work on needs of the planning authorities, and created exchange on an array of issues, handle concrete topics and gave a cross-border perspective to national planning processes. The Finland-Åland-Sweden case provided local stakeholder expert needs and knowledge through meetings and an online tool, as well as exchange among planners from different levels. The Land-sea interactions recommendations are based on analyses and two case studies, and produce guidelines and a pilot plan. A land-sea interaction perspective is an enabler for integrating MSP into overall governance system.

Our handbook on ecosystem-based approach and strategic environmental assessment gives useful tips and a modular implementation for practical needs of planners. The green infrastructure concept for marine spatial planning is ready, and we tested mapping the ecological value and supply of ecosystem services for the whole Baltic Sea. We also made pan-Baltic maps on essential fish habitats. Our modelling shows that climate change has significant effects on distribution of species, and is a threat to ecosystem functions and the blue economy the next 80 years. We map areas important as climate refugia or “last stands”.

The open source desktop app and online version for assessing cumulative impacts called BSII-CAT is ready to use, just like the free, online tool PlanWise4Blue for assessing economic and cumulative impacts for MSP. The map and data service BASEMAPS gives an overview of where states are in their planning, and lets the user view planned sea uses, and browse MSP designations by types and sectors.

We assessed the common regional frameworks that gave valuable input for updating guidelines, work plans and roadmaps. Monitoring and evaluation helps you do the right thing. Systematic expert and stakeholder assessments can reduce uncertainties about outcomes of plans.

Lessons learned summarises our collaboration and knowledge co-creation, giving accounts of participants’ learning and reflections on challenges and enablers for transboundary maritime spatial planning.

Our recommendations can be useful to planners, authorities, policy-makers and others dealing with maritime spatial planning in the Baltic Sea, and possibly beyond. Pan Baltic Scope shows how important it is that the responsible MSP authorities work together, because then results are developed for the real needs, ownership and implementation are immediate, boosting the national processes. A planning forum for practical, hands-on work has proven a great cooperation mechanism.

The partners considered Pan Baltic Scope an important platform for supporting actual implementation of MSP in Member States and for continuous exchange of information and practices between MSP authorities.

Repors and tools

Story Map of the Finland, Åland and Sweden (FIAXSE) Case


  • Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (SwAM) - Sweden;
  • Bundesamt für Seeschifffahrtund Hydrographie (BSH) – Germany;
  • Urząd Morski w Szczecinie / Maritime Office in Szczecin (UMS) – Poland;
  • Danish Maritime Authority (DMA) – Denmark;
  • Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development of Republic of Latvia (Vides aizsardzības un reģionālās attīstības ministrija) (MoEPRD) – Latvia;
  • Estonian Ministry of Finance / Rahandusministeerium – Estonia;
  • State Regional Development Agency, VASAB Secretariat (VRAA) – Latvia;
  • Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission – Helsinki Commission (HELCOM) – Finland;
  • Nordregio – Sweden;
  • Suomen ympäristökeskus/Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) – Finland;
  • Government of Åland – Finland.


  • Ministry of the Environment (Finland);
  • Ministry of Environment (Lithuania);
  • Ministry for Energy, Infrastructure and Regional Development of Mecklenburg and Vorpommern (Germany).