To the top

Page Manager: Webmaster
Last update: 9/11/2012 3:13 PM

Tell a friend about this page
Print version

BONUS BALTSPACE Deliverab… - University of Gothenburg, Sweden Till startsida
To content Read more about how we use cookies on

BONUS BALTSPACE Deliverable 3.3: Addressing MSP integration challenges: The role of tools and approaches. Geesthacht.

Authors Kira Gee
Nerjus Blazauskas
Roland Cormier
Karsten Dahl
Cordula Göke
Andreas Kannen
Neva Leposa
Andrea Morf
Dominik Plug
Angela Ross
Angela Schultz-Zehden
Helena Strand
Barbara Weig
Place of publication Geesthacht
Publication year 2018
Published at University Administration
Swedish Institute for the Marine Environment
School of Global Studies, Human Ecology
Language en
Keywords Marine Spatial Planning, tools, approaches, integration, knowledge, sector, stakeholder, transboundary
Subject categories Comprehensive planning, Social Sciences Interdisciplinary, Human Geography, Public Administration Studies


This report discusses seven different tools and approaches to address important integration challenges in marine and coastal spatial planning and management, namely in relation to sectors and policies, boundaries, stakeholders and different types of knowledge. BONUS BALTSPACE (2015-2018) was conceived against the background of the EU MSP Directive and the need for Member States to produce marine spatial plans by 2021. MSP is an integrative concept that requires integration of sectors and stakeholders, of different types of knowledge, as well as integration across administrative borders. BALTSPACE was the first transnational, interdisciplinary MSP research project in the BSR to focus on four key integration challenges in MSP, namely policy and sector integration, multi-level and transboundary integration, stakeholder integration and knowledge integration. Work Package 3 was tasked with developing and assessing practitioner-oriented approaches and tools for MSP to help deal with the integration challenges identified ( The capacity of seven problem- and process-specific techniques and approaches (subsequently termed tools) was assessed in different case study settings: • Bowtie • Culturally Significant Areas • Governance Baselines • Integrated Indicator System for monitoring the spatial, economic and environmental effects of MSP solutions • Marxan • Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation • Spatial Economic Benefit Analysis (SEBA) Each tool was applied once in a particular country context in a format determined by the tool user. Some applications were desktop exercises, others were more participative, although most had some form of verification by stakeholders. Tool selection reflected both the variety of available methods and the diverse range of tasks in MSP, leading to the inclusion of product- and process-oriented tools, descriptive and analytical tools, as well as data and forecasting tools. One of the tools (SEBA) was specifically developed for MSP as part of BALTSPACE. An overview of academic literature revealed that “tools” in MSP are mostly understood as technical instruments that provide decision support. To a large part, the tools described in the literature rely on scientific data and information, in line with a view of MSP as an evidence-based exercise requiring data collection and analysis as a basis for planning. There is little mention of the role of process in MSP and the learning that might result from tool-supported processes. Also, most assessments do not focus on the indirect or ‘soft’ impacts of tool use, which are often related to the persons or groups engaging with the tool – and which could have positive integration effects by and for themselves. Examples of such impacts include greater mutual understanding or an improved sense of trust, both of which could arise from improved stakeholder and knowledge integration facilitated by a tool. Integration effects may therefore manifest themselves when the tool is being used - e.g. to generate a particular output such as a map – or when the results are being fed back into the MSP process. After a short overview of the purpose of each tool and where it fits in the MSP cycle, an analytical template is set out. This breaks down the four integration challenges into a series of sub-challenges, so as to enable a comparative evaluation of the seven tools against the same set of challenges. It also sets out some more general contributions the tools could make with respect to MSP, such as contributing to the efficiency of the MSP process or to improved decision-making. The assessment is based on the retrospective evaluation of the BALTSPACE researchers and largely descriptive, focusing also on the direct outputs and indirect outcomes of tool use. Throughout, the assessment focuses on the capacity of each tool, taking account of the fact that tool use is context-dependent and that a range of external factors comes into play when it comes to the actual integration results. The assessment shows that the integration challenges most readily addressed are stakeholder and knowledge integration. Conversely, policy integration is difficult to achieve as a direct result, although some tools are well suited to analysing the existing policy landscape and potential integration gaps. Multi-level (transboundary) integration depends on the scale of tool use and is potentially achievable as all tools can be up-scaled if necessary. Some tools are also well-placed to contribute to land-sea integration. An important difference is noted between the inherent capacity of the tools and their application. Some tools are better at certain tasks than others but ultimately, it is the application that is make or break. For example, some tools (such as OS or CSA) are specifically designed to support stakeholder and knowledge integration, in the sense that they would not deliver a result without them. Other tools that are less specifically designed for this purpose can also contribute to stakeholder integration, but this then happens as a result of how the tool is applied – in this case in a participative setting. To some degree, the capacity to facilitate stakeholder and knowledge integration depends on whether a tool is process- or product-oriented or analytical or experimental. Generally, process-oriented tools, especially complex ones such as OS require active stakeholder involvement and input, but there are also product-oriented tools (such as CSA or SEBA) that rely on the integration of various stakeholders and their knowledge. Analytical tools such as Bowtie or Governance Baselines could in theory be conducted as mere desktop exercises, which would restrict their impact on knowledge integration; if applied as participatory tools they would also make an indirect contribution to stakeholder integration. The mere fact that a tool requires stakeholder involvement does not automatically lead to integration benefits, although involvement is certainly a prerequisite. Especially with respect to process-oriented tools, much depends on the skill of the tool user and the quality of the application process, including for example facilitation skills, timing and resources, also on the part of the participating stakeholders. Much also depends on the quality of the (surrounding) MSP process and whether this is capable of absorbing the benefits that may be generated from tool use. The seven tools are unable to contribute to increasing national/transnational policy coherence and resolving institutional compatibilities, and less well placed to help evaluate the consequences of planned action. Only the most comprehensive process-oriented tool (OS) is able to create a forum for deliberation. A key aspect for applying the seven BALTSPACE tools in practice is to know the precise challenge to be addressed, the capacity of the tool (its potential outcomes) including any soft benefits to be achieved, and the capacity of those using the tool (time, timing, resources). It is also important to consider which role the tool is expected to play in the MSP process: Will it be used as a free-standing, independent entity and process, feeding results into the MSP process? Will it be used as a trigger of the MSP process and “way in” or door-opener, for example to motivate stakeholders? Or is the tool to be intimately linked to the entire MSP process, effectively running large parts of it? Insights and practical tips for using the tools are provided in a separate Tools Handbook which is available for download on the BALTSPACE website ( The website also contains short video tutorials on selected tools, as well as a briefing note and short summary of the opportunities and challenges in using tools to support integration in MSP.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

The University of Gothenburg uses cookies to provide you with the best possible user experience. By continuing on this website, you approve of our use of cookies.  What are cookies?