This thematic issue highlights recent research focusing on the interaction of ecological, economic, and social objectives in coastal management and policy making. It covers various experiences in regards to the management and implementation of the European Union's key policy initiatives. The research presented and emphasized the need for coordinated and clear management roles between institutions and government levels as well as the importance of trust and involvement of local stakeholders. Benjamin Boteler of Ecologic Institute was the guest editor. The publication is available for download.
Coastal zones provide not only biodiversity-rich ecosystems, natural hazard protection, food and opportunities for the generation of renewable energies but places for tourism, recreation, cultural heritage and aesthetic sites. However, while many of these activities are beneficial to the economy and to human well-being, they are causing increasing pressure on coastal environments. Loss of and damage to biodiversity, contamination by hazardous substances, introduction of non-indigenous species and increasing amounts of marine litter are the negative counterparts to these activities. Given the recognised importance of coastal zones and their respective ecosystem services they provide, sustainable management of these valuable resources is essential.
Additionally, this issue discusses new tools and methods to support and improve policy implementation such as balanced scorecards, models to select optimal cost-effective management measures, improved spatial planning, a web-based tool to support sustainable coastal development, and a stakeholder framework to improve planning decisions. The Thematic Issue Coastal zones: achieving sustainable management can be downloaded from the publisher’s website.