EcAp – 1st meeting of the Correspondence Group on Economic and Social Analysis


Sophia-Antipolis, France, April 11-12, 2013: Plan Bleu Regional Activity Center hosts the First Meeting of the Ecosystem Approach Correspondence Group on Economic and Social Analysis, in the framework of the Mediterranean Action Plan’s “Ecosystem Approach” Initiative.

In the framework of the Mediterranean Action Plan’s “Ecosystem Approach” Initiative, the first Meeting of the Correspondence Group on Economic Analysis took place in Sophia Antipolis on 11-12 April 2013, and was coordinated and hosted by Plan Bleu.

The Ecosystem Approach is a strategy for the integrated management of land, water and living resources that
promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way, as stated by Convention of Biological Diversity. In 2008, the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention agreed to progressively apply
the Ecosystem Approach to the management of human activities in the Mediterranean region to better protect the marine and coastal environments, and adopted a roadmap for its implementation. The Ecosystem Approach initiative (EcAp) has been articulated as a seven step process with the final objective of reaching “a healthy Mediterranean with marine and coastal ecosystems that are productive and biologically diverse for the benefit of present and future generations”.

Within the context of the third step of the EcAp implementation, the socioeconomic analysis aims at complementing the environmental assessment on marine and coastal ecosystems by highlighting the relationships between human societies and natural systems. A Correspondence Group on Economic and Social Analysis (COR ESA Group) has been established to develop and coordinate the socioeconomic assessment of human uses of waters and coastal zones in the Mediterranean at regional, sub-regional and national scales, Plan Bleu being in charge to coordinate the Group and to perform the ESA action.

The COR ESA Group is composed of national experts designated by the Contracting Parties through Plan Bleu/RAC Focal Points in coordination with the MAP Focal Points; UNEP/MAP Secretariat, Components and Partners; and international experts selected for their experience in similar initiatives or for their scientific expertise.

This First COR ESA Group Meeting congregated national experts from 11 Mediterranean countries, five international experts, including a delegate of EU DG Env. and a representative MAP Coordination Unit.

The objective of this Meeting was to reach a common understanding on the different components of the action:

  • An ESA at regional level of the main marine and coastal activities, including an assessment of the costs of degradation to not achieve GES.
  • Guidelines for future national ESA adapted to non EU Mediterranean countries.
  • Pilot national ESA in three countries (Lebanon, Tunisia and Morocco) in the frame work of the ReGoKo project.

Expertise and knowledge on methods for undertaking socioeconomic assessment in the Mediterranean at the different geographical scales were shared, exchanged and discussed during this two day-meeting. Recommendations have been addressed for the success of this action, the results of which will be presented during Barcelona Convention Conference of Parties 18 planned in Türkiye beginning of next December.

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