Marine Biodiversity Patterns & Processes

A research program aimed to increase knowledge and develop tools for the management of coastal zone biodiversity

A number of national and international political decisions and commitments focus on biodiversity protection and management, for example the Swedish national governmental goals for the environment, the EU Habitat Directive and the Rio Convention. For the political goals to be achievable, however, research and scientific syntheses are urgent.

MARBIPP is a scientific program with the general objective to provide increased knowledge and end-user directed guidelines for the management of coastal marine biodiversity in Swedish waters.

The main important research directions in the program is to:

  • develop indicators of coastal marine biodiversity.
  • define cause-effect relationships of threats and effects on marine biodiversity and from these predict biodiversity changes at different management and disturbance scenarios.
  • map goods and services produced by marine ecosystems and relate these to biodiversity.
  • design guidelines for marine biodiversity and analyse how marine ecosystem functions relate to biodiversity.

We have chosen a set of five Scandinavian model biotopes to work with. Four of the chosen biotopes are common and considered as important coastal biotopes covering a large part of the benthic substrates from 1-15 m depth. These are shallow macrophyte vegetation, fucoid seaweed zones, blue mussel beds and shallow soft sediments. The fifth, deep water coral ecosystems, is representative of unique hotspot biotope of Scandinavian waters.

The program is financed by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) and started in september 2001. It is planned to run for 5 years. About 30 persons, including 18 senior researchers and 11 PhD students, are engaged in the program. MARBIPP is headed by a steering group and there will be contacts during the program period with a stakeholder committee.

Go to MARBIPP homepage