ICES Annual Science Conference 2021

Theme session Q

Making transboundary ocean and coastal governance work – state of the art, problems, and enablers

Thursday 9 September
18:00-19:00 CEST

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Transboundary ocean governance is a complex endeavour involving multiple actors, institutions, epistemologies,​ and spatial and temporal scales. There are various conceptions of ocean governance, as well as a growing range of practical experiences, both of what is and what is not working. This session combines topical conceptual research with practical cases, look​ing to draw out key challenges and enablers for successful transboundary ocean governance. ​

Managing coasts and seas, humanity faces complex socio-environmental problems, reaching across administrative, geographical and time-scales (e.g. resource decline, pollution, climate change, biodiversity loss). It is difficult to address these problems through established institutional frameworks operating within administrative borders. To enable transboundary governance with a broader systems perspective, present concepts and boundaries may need rethinking. 

Transboundary governance implies a complex endeavour with multiple actors working at various geographical and time-scales, across jurisdictions with varying mandates. Over the last decades, some boundary-crossing approaches have been developed, such as integrative coastal and ocean management, ecosystem-based management, and marine spatial planning. These attempt a more integrative coastal and ocean governance: encompassing strategic planning and operational management while addressing both conservation and the blue economy. National and international institutions are also trying to adapt to calls for a more “reflexive governance", implying inclusiveness and learning.

Experiences so far indicate conceptual and practical challenges to transboundary coastal and ocean science and management, but also successful examples. Cross-border and cross-sector collaboration using common principles and objectives along with mutual trust seem crucial.

This session provides a forum to critically discuss the concept, practice, and outcomes of integrative coastal/marine governance in transboundary contexts. It aims to distil key benefits, enablers, needs, and challenges and how these could be addressed. 

Focusing on a more coherent and sustainable governance of coastal and marine areas, we invite theoretical and empirical communications especially along the following lines:

  • Analytical and theoretical perspectives on the lack of conceptual clarity, the institutional barriers and the resulting problems when implementing transboundary governance
  • Addressing the complexities of the land–sea interface in terms of describing the system and developing workable institutional frameworks
  • Important obstacles and enablers for cross-border coordination and collaboration when practicing transboundary governance

Print this pagePrint it Request newsletterSend to Post to Facebook Post to Twitter Post to LinkedIn Share it
Andrea Morf (Sweden)
Jan van Tatenhove (Denmark)
Kira Gee (Germany)
c FollowFollow Focus on ContentFocus on Content
HelpGive Feedback

Theme session Q

International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) · Conseil International pour l'Exploration de la Mer (CIEM)
ICES Secretariat · H. C. Andersens Boulevard 44-46, DK 1553 Copenhagen V, Denmark · Tel: +45 3338 6700 · Fax: +45 3393 4215 ·
Disclaimer Privacy policy · © ICES - All Rights Reserved