Department of Planning

PHD Defence by Miriam von Thenen

Integrating the Ecosystem Service Concept into Baltic Sea Marine Spatial Planning: Mussel Farming as an Example


08.12.2020 kl. 13.00 - 16.00


The oceans are increasingly under pressure from existing and emerging marine uses. There can be conflicts between marine users and the marine environment as well as between the different users. A tool to avoid these conflicts and to create synergies is marine spatial planning (MSP). There is a need for sustainable planning and management of the oceans because they are essential for human well-being. The contributions of marine ecosystems to human well-being are called ecosystem services (ES). The ES concept is part of the ecosystem-based approach to MSP that recognizes the importance of the goods and services provided by the sea to society. While there a parallels between the ES concept and MSP, there are a number of challenges when it comes to the integration of ES in MSP. The objective of the thesis was to provide pathways to resolve these challenges and to demonstrate how the ES concept can support and advance MSP. 

The core of the thesis are six academic papers. The findings from this PhD support the integration of ES into MSP by contributing to a conceptual understanding of the links between ES and MSP, by proposing entry points for stakeholder involvement, and by providing tools to facilitate and ease into ES assessments. Using mussel farming as an example, it is illustrated how data on ES can be generated and how the ES concept can embed site selection into the MSP process. The thesis concludes that the integration of ES in MSP can be mutually reinforcing for the benefit of both – through the focus on the goods and services that should be provided from a planning area and the emphasis on benefits and beneficiaries of ES in the planning process.



Senior Scientist Thomas KLENKE | Centre for Environment and Sustainability Research – COAST, Oldenburg University, Germany 
Professor Ulrich Bathmann | Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW), Germany
Professor Jamal Jokar Arsanjani (Chairman) | Department of Planning, AAU, Denmark


Main supervisor, Professor Henning Sten Hansen | Department of Planning, AAU, DK 
Co-supervisor, Kerstin Schiele | IOW, Germany


Professor Carsten Kessler | Department of Planning, Aalborg University, DenmarkIntegrating the Ecosystem Service Concept into Baltic Sea Marine Spatial Planning: Mussel Farming as an Example




Department of Planning


Online via Microsoft Teams

Registration Deadline

04.12.2020 kl. 16.00

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