Finetuning partnerships through networking
The PANACeA project kicked off on 15-16 March 2017, at Villa Méditerranée, in Marseille, and has brought together major regional players to establish a roadmap for concerted actions over the next 3 years.
More than 60 representatives from Mediterranean institutions such as UNEP Plan Bleu of the Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP), the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe (CPMR), WWF Mediterranean, the Barcelona Convention and IUCN together with research universities and public authorities, put on the table the nine co-funded Interreg Med projects underway and agree a joint framework of action to tackle shared challenges. The Interreg Med initiative PANACeA is led by the European Topic Centre of Malaga University in Spain.
Marseille was a unique occasion to meet face to face to start shaping collaborative partnerships and establish priorities for the next three years aiming at enhancing Mediterranean-wide and EU environmental policies affecting the Mediterranean.
Participants were welcomed by Guillaume Huet, Head of the International and Mediterranean relations service at Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region, who highlighted the importance of territorial cooperation and the involvement of private and public institutions: “We have to prepare a scheme of ecological coherence and involve other authorities”.
Francesca Marcato, Project officer from the Interreg Med Programme Joint Secretariat, said at the meeting that “this innovative approach to integrate all projects in a new biodiversity protection community will create a critical mass to influence environmental policy in the Mediterranean.” During the two days, the Interreg Med programme was also present to inform the community members on a common Interreg Med future web platform and their tools.
Dania Abdul Malak, PANACeA coordinator at ETC-UMA, introduced the aims of PANACeA and explained the importance of working together and stimulating collaboration and communication among major environmental organisations, policy makers, socio-economic actors, civil society and the scientific community particularly in Mediterranean protected areas as the key to protecting biodiversity in the region.
As first introductory steps, the 9 projects at the core of the Med Biodiversity Protection Community - ACT4LITTER, AMARE, CONFISH, ECOSUSTAIN, FISHMPABLUE2, MEDSEALITTER, MPA-ADAPT, POSBEMED and WETNET - took part in a general presentation and in tailored activities such as project speed dating and grouping exercises to determine synergies and the main underlying themes of the community. Collaborative actions, working methodologies and events to be developed during the first year of PANACeA were discussed in a dynamic atmosphere.
To conclude, various participatory actions were identified for the coming months dealing with governance and management of coastal and marine areas, biodiversity monitoring, sustainable use of natural resources, climate change and scientific methodologies and innovation.
PANACeA pursues the optimization and transfer of key project findings within and beyond the Mediterranean and the establishment of an Interreg Med Biodiversity Protection Platform and Community towards an effective management and protection of Mediterranean ecosystems.
To learn more on the K.O meeting activities and main conclusions summarized by PANACeA, you can read here a REPORT of the meeting.
Want to have a look at the cooperative and dynamic atmosphere of the Med Biodiversity Protection Community K.O meeting? See who was there in PANACeA PHOTO GALLERY!
And if you missed our plenary sessions, you can have a look at the main PRESENTATIONS by the PANACeA team.