The Centre for Maritime Studies at the University of Turku (CMS) finalized a three-year project GET READY. The CMS’ main outputs were a curriculum for short-term professional training and examination of best practices on sustainable spatial planning in the Eastern Gulf of Finland. The training course provides a general level introduction of the principles and practices of sustainable spatial planning. It was based on the best practices identified by the project consortium.
Curriculum for Short-term Professional Training
The CMS has developed a curriculum for short-term professional training on sustainable spatial planning for the specific needs of the Eastern Gulf of Finland. The curriculum structure is based on the following four modules: 1) Introduction to principles, theory and frameworks related to sustainable planning and management of the marine and coastal areas; 2) Methods supporting maritime spatial planning; 3) Practices and skills related to stakeholder participation and interaction; and 4) Planning process and implementation of the plans. The four separate modules altogether are equivalent to 5 ECTS credits.
The main target groups of the short-term professional training are professionals and decision-makers who participate in some role in spatial planning or take part in the implementation of the spatial plans of areas that include coastal and maritime water bodies. The training does not require any special background. The course design is based on a learner-centred approach where different types of tasks and assignments are applied, including peer assessments and collaborative projects as well as hands-on workshops, “serious play” cases and field trips. Various teaching and learning methods as well as learning environments are encouraged to be applied by individual teachers when planning courses and drafting course materials.
Best Practices for Sustainable Spatial Planning
The curriculum development was based on the joint work done in examining the best practices for sustainable spatial planning in the marine and coastal areas of the Eastern Gulf of Finland. The CMS was responsible for summarizing and reporting the best practices. The following practices to further develop sustainable marine and coastal planning at the Eastern Gulf of Finland were identified: 1) Ecosystem approach may be built onto the existing national planning cultures; 2) Drafting of the future scenarios is an efficient tool for stakeholder involvement in planning; 3) Developing the identification of land-sea interactions advances ecosystem-based planning; 4) Identifying and valuing ecosystem services is useful to illustrate the links between ecosystems and human well-being; and 5) Transboundary MSP fosters sustainable planning in the Baltic Sea region.
GET READY project (5/2019 - 4/2022) aimed to increase the readiness to respond to the existing and expected challenges in the sustainable environmental management of the Eastern Gulf of Finland. The project consortium comprised Russian-Finnish academic, scientific and business partners. The project was co-financed by the European Union.
More information: Sari Nyroos, GET READY Project Coordinator at the University of Turku