The key task of the Project Inception Phase is to provide a smooth start for other content oriented work packages.

The Inception Phase (months 1-6; mainly driven within Work Package (WP) 2, but supported by other WPs) is designed to smoothly start the work of eMSP NBSR project by establishing the Community of Practice (CoP) working mode, defining the learning questions related to the five policy priority topics covered by CoPs and cross-cutting issues and formulating these into workable Learning Strands. The foundations are provided by the knowledge and experience gained so far in MSP processes in the coastal countries participating in the project.

Thus in the Inception Phase we check first the MSP progress in each member state participating in the project, and we use this knowledge to inform the work of the five CoPsย  and to check how MSP in the project partner countries has respond to grand challenges such as blue growth or climate change with the focus on the latter one that will act as a horizontal overarching layer bringing together all CoPs.

The Inception Phase should create a common understanding of the overall climate challenges in the North and Baltic seas, and a shared vision on how these can be addressed in the different priority elements of the MSPs i.e. aforesaid five CoPs: Ocean governance; Ecosystem-based approach and challenges; the new approach to the sustainable Blue Economy; Monitoring and evaluation; and Data and Information. The baseline analysis will result in a Term of Reference (ToR) that specifies the learning questions and activities for each CoP.

Elements of the Inception Phase

  • Partner meetings including internal and external kick-off conferences;
  • MSP Review on state-of-the art in planning: comparison and analysis of maritime spatial plans;
  • formulating terms of references for CoPs on the five thematic learning strands;
  • Gap-analysis on content and policy;
  • formulating terms of reference for Scientific Advisory Board in terms of upcoming policy topics Climate change and the MSP-relevant parts of the EU Green Deal;
  • training of responsible partners in facilitation and methods of CoP groups.

During the Inception Phase the necessary relationships with the stakeholders outside the MSP community in particular with business associations, NGOs, associations of local and regional authorities from both sea basins should be established.

Expected Results

The final milestone of the Inception Phase is the external Kick Off meeting, which will present the eMSP NBSR project to the stakeholders and will include individual sessions of each CoP, with the same – starting the Community of Practise work.


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