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Promoting co-management as an innovative tool for the sustainable use of marine natural resources


Credits: FAO GFCM Fishforum 2018


Report of the participation of UNIMED to the FAO Fish Forum 2018

The trends about the status of Mediterranean and Black Sea fish stocks are quite alarming, a news which requires constant and more preponderant scientific and technical assistance in fisheries management. The recent and quick development of new technologies, which found a large application to the fishery sector, is going towards this direction.

On December 10th 2018 at the FAO Headquarters in Rome, PANACeA partnership- an Interreg MED featured project – including UNIMED, organised a side-event on “Promoting co-management as an innovative tool for the sustainable use of marine natural resources” within the Fish Forum 2018 organised by the GFCM – General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean of the FAO – Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

The workshop focused on co-management as an efficient and promising innovative tool for the sustainable development and use of marine natural resources in the Mediterranean region. The event showcased experiences of co-management best practices from several Interreg Med co-financed projects of the MED Biodiversity Protection Community (FishMAPBlue2, CONFISH, PHAROS4MPAs), as well as research results and recommendations from other relevant initiatives, such as DESTIMED (an Interreg MED funded project belonging to the MED Sustainable Tourism Community featured by the BleuTourMed Project), and different actors involved in the co-management approach, such as universities (University of Nice and University of Zagreb), research institutes (ISPRA), networks (FARNET) and NGOs (WWF), regional authorities (Government of the Balearic islands) and MPA managing bodies (Torre Guaceto marine protected area).

Structured in three panel the discussions addressed strategic issues in fishery management:

1_ Why and to what extent co-management is a key tool/opportunity for the sustainable development of Mediterranean small-scale fishery?


Luca Santarossa, FISHMPABLUE2 project, Federparchi – Europarc Italy

Antonio di Franco, University of Nice

Francesco de Franco, MPA Torre Guaceto

2_ Multi Stakeholder involvement and participatory approach: Moving from theory to practice in order to create ownership and raise awareness for integrated MPAs management


Anamaria Štambuk, CONFISH project, University of Zagreb

Sasa Raicevich, Italian National Institute for Environmental Protection and Research

Marco Costantini, PHAROS4MPAs project, WWF

Alessandro Melillo, TOURISMED project, PRISM

3_How to expand and transfer best practices – Towards a common integration of co-management in the Mediterranean region


Anna Carlson, GFCM FAO

Gilles Van de Walle, FARNET

Antoni Maria Grau, Regional Government of the Balearic Islands

See here the workshop summary.

The Fish Forum 2018 is one of the key activities within the strategy promoted by FAO for the sustainability of Mediterranean and Black Sea fisheries, adopted by Resolution GFCM/40/2016/2. The work realised by the MED Biodiversity Protection Community, of which UNIMED is a member, as partner in PANACeA project, is contributing to provide evidences and develop new management solutions to support progress made mainly towards achieving UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14, on the conservation and sustainable use of oceans, seas and marine resources.

UNIMED is partner in the three Interreg MED projects: BleuTourMed, GO SUMP and PANACeA, co-funded by the ERDF – European Regional Development Fund. Since 2016 and under the umbrella Programme Interreg MED, within these three transnational cooperation projects, UNIMED has a communication and knowledge management role about the three thematics of sustainable tourism, urban transports and biodiversity protection. UNIMED is a strongly committed partner, working towards sustainable development issues and with a solid expertise thanks to its academic SubNetworks.

PANACeA project is and Interreg MED Project featuring the The MED Biodiversity Protection Community, which is working to streamline networking and management efforts in Mediterranean Protected Areas (PAs) as a mechanism to enhance nature conservation and protection in the region. The project builds a community of nature conservation stakeholders in the Mediterranean and acts as the communication and capitalisation instrument of the projects dealing with protection of biodiversity and natural ecosystems. The partners are European Topic Centre – University of Malaga, MEDCITIES, UNIMED-Mediterranean Universities Union, Inter-Mediterranean Commission of the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (IMC – CPMR), Plan Bleu for the Environment and Development in the Mediterranean, Regional Environmental Centre for Central and Eastern Europe, Country Office Montenegro.

BleuTourMed is an Interreg MED project featuring the MED Sustainable Tourism Community, which gathers 18 territorial cooperation projects co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), and almost 200 organisations (public authorities, private companies, universities, NGOs and international organisations) active in twelve European-Mediterranean coastal areas. Most notably, the Community’s members are leading the development of common tools to monitor the tourism industry, they are studying and testing new tourism models and they are actively engaging policy makers and managers in a constant dialogue to make tourism a real driver for sustainable development. The BleuTourMed project is coordinated by Arco Latino, a network of local public authorities based in Tarragona (Spain), in partnership with UNIMED – Mediterranean Universities Union (Rome), University of Panteion (Athens), Plan Bleu UNEP MAP, the Regional Activity Centre of Mediterranean Action Plan (Marseille), Barcelona Provincial Council (Barcelona) and Adriatic and Ionian Euroregion (Pula).

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