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Sea For Society (SFS)
Start date: Jun 1, 2012, End date: Nov 30, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Sea for Society (SFS) has brought together a multidisciplinary partnership of 21 partners from 11 countries representing marine research institutes, funding agencies, science museums and aquaria, CSO’s, NGO’s, higher education institutes, business networks, to implement a MMLAP to address Specific Challenge 3: Marine Resources, inland activities & sustainable development. SFS will mobilise researchers, marine and terrestrial actors, CSO’s and individual citizens and youth in a mutual learning, open dialogue and joint action process to consider key questions, extract cross-cutting issues and propose challenge-driven solutions.Ten ‘geographical forums’ across Europe will involve economic stakeholders, environmental organisations, local authorities, the public-at-large, and youth in a participatory process to identify challenges and barriers of coastal and marine ecosystem services vis-à-vis societal needs. While these actors may have very different and even conflicting perspectives, collective reasoning sessions will lead to co-authored recommendations for facing up to the challenge. Key questions will be considered in the context of ‘ocean ecosystem services’ with an emphasis on relating complex biodiversity to ‘lived experiences’ in order to bridge how everyday human behaviour interplays with science. The open dialogue process will lead to further empowerment of stakeholders and citizens to take action at a local, national and European level to tackle marine societal challenges.Public Engagement in Research (PER) as it relates to European maritime policy is at the core of the process. Sustaining the MMLAP will be important in designing the SFS mechanisms: for partnership, interaction, PER, empowerment and redressing marine societal challenges. Face-to-face and web-based open dialogue will enrich the new concept of the “Blue Society” and improve the governance of research related to the oceans and seas.

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