Detecting critical choke points for achieving Good Environmental Status in European seas

Tavis Potts, Tim O'Higgins, Ruth Brennan, Sergio Cinnirella , Urs Steiner Brandt , Juan Luis Suarez De Vivero, Justus van Beusekom, Tinke Troost, Lucille Paltriguera, Ayse Gunduz Hosgor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
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Choke points are social, cultural, political, institutional, or psychological obstructions of social-ecological systems that constrain progress toward an environmental objective. Using a soft systems methodology, different types of chokes points were identified in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland, the Baltic, and the North and Mediterranean seas. The choke points were of differing types: cultural and political choke points were identified in Barra and the Mediterranean, respectively, whereas the choke points in the North Sea and Baltic Sea were dependent on differing values toward the mitigation of eutrophication. We conclude with suggestions to identify and address choke points.
Original languageEnglish
Article number29
Number of pages11
JournalEcology and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • marine policy
  • systems science
  • Marine Strategy Framework Directive
  • marine sustainability
  • soft systems methodolgy


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