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Enhancing Europe's Capability in Marine Ecosystem Modelling for Societal Benefit

This publication looks at how marine ecosystem models are being increasingly used as a tool for ecosystem management. It gives examples of current capability and examines the mis-match between science and policy, providing recommendations to strengthen marine ecosystem modelling capability for current and future societal needs.

Integrated management of the marine environment requires a holistic understanding of marine ecosystems, rather than focusing on single issues, species, or ecosystem services in isolation. Marine ecosystem models are an important analytical approach to: integrate knowledge, data, and information; improve understanding on ecosystem functioning; and complement monitoring and observation efforts. They also offer the potential to predict the response of marine ecosystems to future scenarios and to support the implementation of ecosystem-based management of our seas and ocean.

Europe has an excellent capability in Marine Ecosystem Modelling and these are being increasingly used as a tool for ecosystem management. However, there remains a mismatch between scientific research and what policy makers need to know. EMB Future Science Brief 4 examines current state-of-the-art in Europe and beyond and recommends key areas where marine ecosystem modelling capability could be strengthened, including ways to better connect models, observations and societal needs.

The Future Science Brief can be downloaded here and a short factsheet for policy makers can be found here.

More information on the working group that established this publication is available here.

EMB tracks the dissemination and impact of its documents for at least 2 years after publication. You can find a short summary of the dissemination and impact of this Future Science Brief here.