Unifying approaches to Functional Marine Connectivity for improved marine resource management: the European SEA-UNICORN COST Action

Type Article
Date 2022-02
Language English
Author(s) Darnaude AudreyORCID1, Arnaud-Haond SophieORCID2, Hunter EwanORCID3, Gaggiotti OscarORCID4, Sturrock AnnaORCID5, Beger MariaORCID6, 7, Volckaert FilipORCID8, Pérez-Ruzafa AngelORCID9, López-López LucíaORCID10, Tanner Susanne E.ORCID11, Turan CemalORCID, Ahmet Doğdu ServetORCID13, Katsanevakis SteliosORCID14, Costantini FedericaORCID15
Affiliation(s) 1 : MARBEC, Univ Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, Montpellier, France
2 : MARBEC, Univ Montpellier, Sète, France
3 : Agri-Food & BioSciences Institute AFBI, Dromore, United Kingdom
4 : University of St Andrews, Fife, United Kingdom
5 : School of Life Sciences, University of Essex, Colchester, United Kingdom
6 : School of Biology, University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom
7 : University of Queensland, Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science, School of Biological Sciences, Brisbane, Australia
8 : Laboratory of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Genomics, KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
9 : University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain
10 : Oceanographic Centre of the Balearic Islands, Palma de Mallorca, Spain
11 : MARE-Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre & Departamento de Biologia Animal, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal
12 : Molecular Ecology and Fisheries Genetics Laboratory, Iskenderun Technical University, Iskenderun, Turkey
13 : Nature and Science Society, Ýskenderun, Turkey
14 : University of the Aegean, Mytilene, Greece
15 : University of Bologna, Ravenna, Italy
Source Research Ideas and Outcomes (2367-7163) (Pensoft Publishers), 2022-02 , Vol. 8 , P. e80223 (21p.)
DOI 10.3897/rio.8.e80223
Keyword(s) conservation, ecosystem services, management, marine biodiversity, marine resources, marine spatial planning, meta-populations, meta-ecosystems

Truly sustainable development in a human-altered, fragmented marine environment subject to unprecedented climate change, demands informed planning strategies in order to be successful. Beyond a simple understanding of the distribution of marine species, data describing how variations in spatio-temporal dynamics impact ecosystem functioning and the evolution of species are required. Marine Functional Connectivity (MFC) characterizes the flows of matter, genes and energy produced by organism movements and migrations across the seascape. As such, MFC determines the ecological and evolutionary interdependency of populations, and ultimately the fate of species and ecosystems. Gathering effective MFC knowledge can therefore improve predictions of the impacts of environmental change and help to refine management and conservation strategies for the seas and oceans. Gathering these data are challenging however, as access to, and survey of marine ecosystems still presents significant challenge. Over 50 European institutions currently investigate aspects of MFC using complementary methods across multiple research fields, to understand the ecology and evolution of marine species. The aim of SEA-UNICORN, a COST Action within the European Union Horizon 2020 framework programme, is to bring together this research effort, unite the multiple approaches to MFC, and to integrate these under a common conceptual and analytical framework. The consortium brings together a diverse group of scientists to collate existing MFC data, to identify knowledge gaps, to enhance complementarity among disciplines, and to devise common approaches to MFC. SEA-UNICORN will promote co-working between connectivity practitioners and ecosystem modelers to facilitate the incorporation of MFC data into the predictive models used to identify marine conservation priorities. Ultimately, SEA-UNICORN will forge strong forward-working links between scientists, policy-makers and stakeholders to facilitate the integration of MFC knowledge into decision support tools for marine management and environmental policies.

Full Text
File Pages Size Access
Publisher's official version 21 392 KB Open access
Top of the page

How to cite 

Darnaude Audrey, Arnaud-Haond Sophie, Hunter Ewan, Gaggiotti Oscar, Sturrock Anna, Beger Maria, Volckaert Filip, Pérez-Ruzafa Angel, López-López Lucía, Tanner Susanne E., Turan Cemal, Ahmet Doğdu Servet, Katsanevakis Stelios, Costantini Federica (2022). Unifying approaches to Functional Marine Connectivity for improved marine resource management: the European SEA-UNICORN COST Action. Research Ideas and Outcomes, 8, e80223 (21p.). Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.3897/rio.8.e80223 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00753/86458/