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News & Press: Calls for Papers

Marine Ecosystem-Based Management: Call for Papers

Monday, October 03, 2016  
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CFP: American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, Boston, MA, April 5-10, 2017

Session Title: Participation in Marine Ecosystem-Based Management
Organizers: Wesley Flannery, QUB and Aria Finkelstein, MIT


Meaningful stakeholder participation is viewed as being central to effective marine planning processes including Marine Spatial Planning (MSP), Marine Ecosystem-based Management (EBM) and Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM). These marine planning processes seek to holistically address interactions among sectors and communities within coastal and marine areas. Implementing holistic marine planning requires the adoption of bottom-up planning processes, which facilitate meaningful stakeholder participation, enable stakeholders to recognise their interconnectedness and support the development of integrated management strategies. Empirical research has, however, illustrated that stakeholder participation in marine planning initiatives is often tokenistic. For example, a recent study of "Marine Planning in Reality" analyses twelve European case studies and finds that they tend to be top-down rather than bottom-up, that they are driven by sectoral interests rather than integrated or comprehensive goals, and that blue growth takes priority over environmental priorities (Jones et al, 2016). Globally, research has demonstrated that this gap between the ideal and reality is not specific to Europe (Flannery et al, 2016). This session seeks to critically examine stakeholder involvement in marine planning processes in reality by inviting papers that:

  • present empirical research that supports or challenges marine planning ideals of stakeholder participation.
  • map out ways in which the processes and outcomes of marine planning can come closer to their stated aspirations.
  • examine and explain successful examples of stakeholder participation in marine planning initiatives (MSP, EBM, ICZM etc.).
  • explore interactions between bottom-up and top-down planning processes or management systems and between government actors and civil society in marine planning processes.
  • give accounts of practices that are bottom-up, planning initiatives that are integrative and comprehensive, and/or processes that have balanced ecosystem health with other stakeholder needs.
  • propose practices, theoretical frameworks, and research programs to make stakeholder participation more effective in guiding marine planning efforts.

Send an abstract of no more than 250 words to Aria Finkelstein and Wesley Flannery by October 20, 2016.


  • Peter J.S. Jones, L.M. Lieberknecht, W. Qiu (2016). Marine spatial planning in reality: Introduction to case studies and discussion of findings, Marine Policy, vol. 71, September 2016, pp. 256-264.
  • Flannery, W & Ellis, G (2016). Exploring the winners and losers of marine environmental governance (Edited Interface Collection). Planning Theory and Practice, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 121-122.


The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning promotes education, research, service and outreach in the United States and throughout the world by seeking to:

  • recognize diverse needs and interests in planning;
  • improve and enhance the accreditation process, and;
  • strengthen the role of planning education in colleges and universities through publications, conferences, and community engagement;
  • extend planning beyond the classroom into the world of practice.