Making marine spatial planning matter

Wesley Flannery*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

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Over the last decade, Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) has become one of the key components of marine governance. In the European Union, member states are working towards the development of their first plans under the Maritime Spatial Planning Directive. Internationally, UNESCO and the European Commission have launched their MSP Global initiative to speed up the implementation of MSP around the world. MSP is also framed as being a key mechanism for sustainably realising the benefits of the Blue Economy and emerging Green Deals. During this same period, however, a substantial body of critical academic work has emerged that questions whether the implementation of MSP will transform unsustainable marine governance and management practices. This scholarship illustrates that the current trajectory of many MSP initiatives is to preserve the status quo and that they fail to adequately address longstanding marine governance issues. Drawing on Flyvbjerg’s vital treatise on phronetic social science, this chapter will explore: where is MSP going; who gains and loses, and how they do so; is this desirable, and if not, what can be done to make MSP matter? I particularly focus on mechanisms of winning and losing, characterising them as key tensions in MSP processes that can be unsettled to make MSP more transformative.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication Ocean governance: knowledge systems, policy foundations and thematic analyses
EditorsStefan Partelow, Maria Hadjimichael, Anna-Katharina Hornidge
ISBN (Electronic)9783031207402
ISBN (Print)9783031207396
Publication statusPublished - 02 Mar 2023

Publication series

NameMARE Publication Series
ISSN (Print)2212-6260
ISSN (Electronic)2212-6279


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