Tuesday 4. June 2013

A Focus on Maritime Spatial Planning

[mynd 1 h]Recently, the Icelandic Planning Agency held a seminar about marine and coastal planning. The seminar, which was well attended, was held in collaboration with the University Centre of the Westfjords. Two teachers of the program were key note speakers, Áslaug Ásgeirsdóttir and Tiina Tihlmann. The seminar's agenda and slides are accessible on the website of the Icelandic Planning Agency.

Áslaug Ásgeirsdóttir, an associate professor at Bates College in Maine in the United States, held a lecture on the policy of individual states in New England regarding marine spatial planning (MSP) and its uses in ocean and coastal governance. She explained the major controversies in this regard, but in some cases MSP has proved useful in resolving disputes, such as the case of the utilization of the Bay of Fundy, adjacent to the U.S. and Canada. Tiina Tihlmann, a ministerial adviser in the Finnish Ministry for the Environment, explained the strategy of EU regarding MSP, in what stage of development MSP was in individual memeber states, and finally took examples from the Baltic sea, especially MSP projects in the Gulf of Bothnia.

[mynd 2 v]
Áslaug now teaches a course in conflict resolution in relation to fisheries management. There she examines different approaches in fisheries management, for example, ecosystem approach. For a final project, students carrie out a simulation exercise of the conflict over mackerel in the North Atlantic where they represent different states in the conflict. Additionally, other offshore uses are reviewed in the light of dispute resolution.

Tiina taught a course in maritime spatial planning in May. There, students went step by step through the process of recent MSP project in the Gulf of Bothnia in the Baltic Sea, which Tiina played a large part in shaping.