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WP9 Management & science-policy interfacing

WP leader: Achim Kopf, MARUM Bremen, Germany
Antje Boetius, Alfred-Wegener Inst. for Polar & Mar. Research, Germany

The DS3F project will be coordinated from MARUM Research Centre, University of Bremen, Germany, under the leadership of Prof. Achim Kopf and with the assistance of a dedicated (part-time) project manager. Support will also be provided by the in-house finance and contract management teams at the University of Bremen, and by MARUM’s Public Outreach department and Press office. Project progress will be overseen by the Project Steering Committee (hereafter PSC), comprising the WP leaders and chaired by an elected chairperson. The PSC will meet at least thrice over the coarse of the 30 months duration to assess project progress and direction, and will liaise with the European Commission on matters relating to FP7 funding directions, gaps in research capabilities, and potential emerging goals for the upcoming FP8.

Communication between WPs is an essential part of the project and has been achieved over the course of the proposal preparation by an ftp server at MARUM Bremen. When funded, communication will be additionally enhanced by a project website, which will provide both information to the wider scientific community and general public, but will also provide an essential means of communication between the different working groups of the DS3F consortium in a password-protected, internal part of the website. MARUM IT specialists have already reserved a website for this, although it has not yet been made public. The FTP server is kept active over the course of the DS3F coordination & support action. In addition, the project management team will develop an open access web portal available to the wider community over the course of the project. All important documents regarding the progress of the DS3F efforts will be made available, and information will be linked to the Pangaea WDC, one of the largest world data centres containing marine information. Data base experts have been incorporated into the WP9 group to ensure the rapid, efficient setup of this web portal.

It is already set up in partitions into which each WP has a dedicated, secure area in which to post and extract meeting minutes, documents and manuscripts – a facility that will be particularly important during the preparation of the interim and final versions of the envisaged DS3F white paper document. Both the FTP server and the website will also serve as a notice board for the various DS3F meetings and workshops, and provide information on forthcoming deadlines and external meetings.

WP9 will be responsible for coordinating the inputs of WPs 1-8 to the “white paper” document to be produced as the main result of the project (see Gannt diagram on this website). Thus the project manager and his team will participate into the individual workshops of each WP to gather first-hand information.

In addition, the management team will undertake the promotion and advertising activities associated with the main DS3F conference scheduled to take place in Spain in fall 2011. Promotion amongst all potential participants will be carefully targeted to ensure all key players are present, and the timing will allow us to incorporate the main outcomes of the event into the final version of the white paper. The DS3F management office at MARUM Bremen will assist with planning the various workshops where necessary, and ensure attendance by key scientists and stakeholders in the various disciplines.

The DS3F management office at MARUM Bremen will coordinate and submit annual progress reports to the European Commission (with input from other consortium partners) and prepare the appropriate annual financial and management reports in accordance with the terms of the Grant Agreement. The project manager has already prepared the DS3F Consortium Agreement, will later circulate it among the WP leaders (i.e. partners), and will monitor budget expenditure during the project.

Towards the end of the project, the DS3F management will team up with experts from socio-economics to ensure cross-fertilisation and science-policy interfacing. This aspect will tackle foremost deep-sea resources, which are increasingly exploited and affected by anthropogenic impacts on vulnerable ecosystems and habitats, both in the water column, on the seafloor, and in the sub-seafloor. Direct impacts relate to exploitation of deep-sea resources (e.g., fisheries, hydrocarbon extraction, mining, bioprospecting), to seabed uses (e.g., cable laying, pipelines, carbon sequestration) and to pollution (e.g., contamination from land-based sources/activities, waste disposal, dumping, noise, impacts of shipping and maritime accidents). Recent advances in deep-sea research indicate that there is an increasing recognition of the importance of deep-sea processes and ecosystems for the marine web of life and the global environment, and the goods and services deep-sea environments provide are of growing economic significance. Moreover, it has been attested that many deep biosphere as well as hydrothermal geological processes provide geofuels in the shallow sub-seafloor, which are of importance for both marine life and economy. To us it is crucial to get a comprehensive understanding of the deep oceans by combining knowledge from the natural sciences with socio-economic and governance research in support of the sustainable use and conservation of deep-sea resources.

Close contact exists with NGOs such as the UNESCO chair in Marine Geology at MSU, Russia, who has conducted several research projects, including (i) Geological, geochemical and biogeochemical processes at continental margins; (ii) Petroleum potential of continental margins; (iii) Geosphere-Biosphere-Hydrosphere coupling processes at ocean margins. All of them show broad overlap with the key issues of DS3F, and are also taken towards education of young researchers (the TTR programme incl. expeditions on RV Logachev).

A core discussion group comprising a mix of scientists with expertise in relevant social sciences (e.g. economics, law, sociology) and representatives from policy, industry, NGOs and national Ministries and Funding Agencies is envisaged to be directly involved in the management activities to evaluate research needs and gaps in expertise and the best strategies and recommendations for implementation over the next 10-15 years in Europe. The core group will be at the centre of networking activities of WP9 during the second half of the project when it becomes critical to link the findings of the various WP experts and workshops and relate them to emerging governance issues. In addition, it will contribute the organisation of a devoted session on “Sustainable management of the deep sea and sub-seafloor and Science-Policy Interfaces” as part of the major general DS3F meeting planned for 2011 (see above).

After the major conference in Spain, the key representatives of each WP will team up with the management group to condense the wealth of results from the project into the DS3F “white paper”. This document will be built on the earlier Deep Sea Frontier foresight papers (see Downloads section of this website) and other activities within FP7, but will go significantly beyond it. A draft of the “white paper” will be discussed during a hearing in Brussels, and Commission Services are encouraged to set up peer-review and editing procedures to ascertain quality control and a wide acceptance of the recommendations. The project management team will then undertake the final editing and pre-press preparation tasks relating to publication of the final DS3F white paper, which is intended to be widely available to the scientific and stakeholder community.

List of tentative WP9 participants (Level 3)

S. van den Hove, Median SCP, Barcelona, Spain (Socio-economics, science-policy interfaces); S. Hain, UNEP, Cambridge UK (International Oceans Governance); A. Grehan, Ireland (DG Fisheries and Maritime Affairs); N. Beaumont, Plymouth, UK (Marine Laboratory and Marbef Env. Economics); K. Gjerde, IUCN Ottawa, Canada (Law, High Seas Policy); S. Stagl, Univ of Sussex UK (Economics, Multi-criteria analysis); D. Hauglustaine, European Science Foundation, Strasbourg, France (EuroMARC coordination); M. Hovland, StatoilHydro, Stavanger, Norway (Human activities in the deep sea, Cold water corals, Seepage); J. Borg, Policy representative, European Marine Governance (DG Fisheries and Maritime Affairs); M. Diepenbroek, MARUM, Germany (Metadata and Data management, Web portal); L. Beranzoli, INGV, Italy (Deep-sea observatories, geophysics, Data management); C. Franklin, NERC UK (UK funding agency); D.H. Drapeau, Total, France (Research & development); J. Remacle, EU Policy representative (DG Research); M. Ivanov, UNESCO Chair in Marine Geology & Geophysics, Moscow State Univ., Russia (Deep fluids, geodynamics and ecosystems); S. Dürr, DFG Bonn (German Science Foundation); R. Schorno, NOW/AWL, Den Haag, Netherlands (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research); .