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  • Interview with a fisherwoman © Tim Jennerjahn

The ecosystems at Chinese coasts are undergoing rapid changes under the strong influences of both global climate change and anthropogenic activities.

The complexity of Chinese coastal ecosystems, in terms of their physical, chemical and biological interactions with the land and the ocean, requires systematic and integrated scientific research to understand their responses to environmental change and anthropogenic activities, and produce sound scientific knowledge that supports sustainable resource management.

In late 2015 we started a Chinese-German cooperation research project on ‘Environmental change affecting COastal ecosystems of tropical China during the Anthropocene: Landward vs. OCeanic influence’ (ECOLOC) funded by German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

A major goal of ECOLOC is to provide comprehensive knowledge required for a sustainable management of Hainan’s coastal resources, based on the combination of previous results from the predecessor project LANCET (Land-Sea Interactions in Coastal Ecosystems of Tropical China) and new results.

The sustainable management of Hainan’s coastal resources depends not only on scientists providing their sound scientific knowledge, but also on actions of policy makers and other stakeholders whose behaviors can have significant impact on coastal resources management. It is clear that policy makers, practitioners and the public need access to the best available knowledge in order to understand the problems in Chinese coastal ecosystems and make wise choices towards developing measures for a sustainable use of their resources. This is where the concept of knowledge exchange between science and society comes into play. Knowledge exchange is a necessary ingredient of sustainable resource management and, moreover, it can contribute to reinforcing two other equally important factors: political will and public support.

In this context, a new add-on project: ‘Tackling environmental change Issues of China’s coastal Aquatic Systems: networking, capacity building and knowledge exchange’ (TICAS) was launched in 2017 to complement ECOLOC and conduct knowledge exchange between science and societal stakeholders. The overall aim of TICAS is to produce and disseminate knowledge that contributes to solving environmental issues of Chinese coastal ecosystems and enhance the connectivity between scientists and non-scientific stakeholders.

You can download the ECOLOC flyer pdf here.

Our research project in pictures

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