MaCoBioS and CMCC were excited to welcome participants from across the Mediterranean to Lecce, Italy on the 29thand 30th September 2022 to discuss how we can identify spatial opportunities for marine and coastal Nature-based Solutions.

Our goal was to bring together policy-makers and practitioners who are working to improve management of marine and coastal ecosystems through nature-based approaches and provide a forum to foster learning, explore current and future challenges faced by management, and consider solutions. Here is the host and coordinator, Elisa Furlan, giving a short overview of the workshop.

The agenda was packed. Thought-provoking presentations, in-depth discussions, a trip to the Torre Guaceto Marine Protected Area, tasty food, and lots of sharing of ideas. Our conversations were focused around how we can better manage cumulative risks from human activities and climate change in marine and coastal spaces and inform decisions about where NBS could be targeted. A common theme that ran through all our discussions was the urgent need to reduce direct human pressures on marine and coastal ecosystems where they occur prior to other actions. Without doing so, the effectiveness of any other form of management, such as restoration actions, would be limited. There were lots of interesting discussions about balancing pragmatism and opportunity with application of predictive models that can offer more strategic direction. We also discussed what such models should contain and how they should be communicated. Displayed below is a brief synopsis of the workshop.In the end, we were happy with the positive feedback received from participants, who found the workshop interesting and highlighted the importance of these events.

We’d like to thank all of the people who made our workshop a success by giving their time and valuable insights which helped shape this important dialogue and tool development.

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