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Theme 3 RMP workshop on European marine biological valuation

Location: Ghent (Belgium)
Event Type: Workshop
Event Date: 2006-12-06    
End Date: 2006-12-08

Event Description:

As announced during the last MARBEF General Assembly (Lecce), the MARBEF Theme III RMP organizes a workshop on European marine biological valuation in Ghent (Belgium) on 6-8/12/2006.

With this email we would like to trigger your attention and curiousity to the subject of marine biological valuation as well as launch an open call for participation in the workshop.

Marine biological valuation encompasses the determination of the value of the marine environment from a nature conservation perspective. As such, marine biological valuation aims at providing an integrated [view] on nature’s intrinsic value (i.e. without any reference to anthropogenic use), as opposed to socio-economic valuation aiming at the quantification of the goods and services.
Because there is an ever increasing use of the marine environment, practitioners, stakeholders and policy makers request clear and simple baseline maps in order to allow them make well-deliberated choices: e.g. usage maps may be used to detect conflicts in spatial distribution of human activities, whereas sedimentology maps allow to deliberately identify suitable aggregate extraction zones. These maps are indispensable within the process of spatial planning. A protocol to develop baseline biological valuation maps, differentiating between the intrinsic value within an area, however do not exist. Consequently, when such maps are needed, one is often obliged to trust on the available best expert judgement.
Taking the success of the terrestrial biological valuation maps of Flanders (Belgium) as an example, the MARBEF Theme III team set the development of a widely applicable and scientifically acceptable valuation protocol for the marine environment as one of their major goals. Doing so, a prototype protocol was developed, making optimal use of (1) the lessons learned from the terrestrial valuation experts, (2) existing national initiatives and (3) existing international directives (e.g. Habitat Directive and European Marine Strategy).

During this workshop we would like to make use of your expertise and thoughts on this subject. Only such wide and interactive cooperation might lead to a protocol that is widely accepted and applicable.
The main objectives of the workshop are therefore:

- to have a general discussion on the prototype valuation protocol, with emphasis on the applicability in marine/coastal habitats
- to come to a preliminar consensus on the biological valuation protocol
- to agree on the project outline and timing for the coming years
- to SELECT case study areas for protocol testing and to make practical arrangements on these tests.

A detailed agenda for the workshop is expected to be circulated by early October.

The workshop will be a joint venture of the EU NoE MARBEF ( and the EU CA ENCORA ( By organizing a workshop for both MARBEF and ENCORA members we feel that this cooperation will drastically increase the expertise, needed to reach the final goal of this workshop. The MARBEF community mainly consists of marine natural scientists, providing the necessary critical mass of biodiversity, whereas ENCORA, focusing on end-users, will bring in the indispensable input of practitioners and stake holders as well as their experience with decision support systems.

If you are interested to contribute to this workshop we would like you to send your expression of interest to by mid September. Because such interactive workshops can only be successful when a limited number of persons (max. 40) is participating, a selection of participants might follow (end September).

Contact email:

Event programme:
A detailed agenda for the workshop is expected to be circulated by early October.

Collaborators and organisers:
Your conveners:
Steven Degraer, Sofie Derous & Magda Vincx

Marine Biology Section, Biology Department, Ghent University
Krijgslaan 281 - S8, B-9000 Gent, Belgium
Tel. int32 9 2648522 Fax int32 9 2648598

Website url: 

Registration form: 

Registration fee: 

Relevant costs that should be taken by MARBEF:  

Possibility for day-care centres (facilities for children): No

MarBEF supported event: Yes

Event within Framework of MARBEF: WP5 - Socio-economics

Maximum number of participants: 40

External participants (non MARBEF) allowed: Yes

Posted by wardappeltans on 2006-07-08 and approved by webmaster