Applying an Ecosystems approach to Stakeholder Engagement in Marine Spatial Planning


Description of impact

Interdisciplinary research across ecological, social sciences and law at the University of Aberdeen addresses a gap relating to stakeholder engagement in marine spatial planning and decision making. The research developed a novel stakeholder-driven methodology to facilitate understanding of outcomes of policy changes surrounding complex marine ecosystems. The method has increased understanding of how natural capital principles can be applied to ecosystems planning throughout the UK, allowing the broader values and benefits from marine ecosystems to inform decision-making. This approach is being incorporated by fishing industry representatives, by the Joint Nature Conservation Committee which informs UK government policy, and in the ‘Marine Pioneer’ (UK Government) programme, testing a natural capital approach to decision making and helping implement the UK 25-year Environment Plan.

Outcomes to Date / Future Developments

Research led by the University of Aberdeen has underpinned the development of three frameworks: the ES matrix, the CORPORATES framework and Participatory Mapping. Collectively they underpin new approaches to policy processes around ecosystem services and the multiple uses of the marine environment
Impact statusImpact Completed (Open)
Impact date2011


  • Environmental