The Project objective was to achieve joint management of the environment in the Mediterranean eco-region. By the creation of a consultation table between the relevant Public Administrations (Institutional Network) and the Scientific Institutions (Scientific Network), common Guidelines and an Indicators' Handbook were developed to achieve monitoring, planning and sustainable management in Protected Areas in the Mediterranean eco-region. An innovative web-based platform (INNOVA Platform) was implemented to support the effective management of protected areas and to collect request and opinion from end-users. The Pilot Project activities, consisting in the implementation of the PASEM (Protected Areas Sustainability Evaluation Monitoring), as well as in proposing site-relevant sustainability indicators, were implemented in pilot areas. The results of surveys, management effectiveness evaluation, selected indicators and best practices were collected in the Case Study Report and disseminated.
CIHEAM Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari - ItalyLead applicant
The Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari (MAIB) is a Centre for post-graduate training, applied scientific research and design of in-loco partnership actions in the framework of the international cooperation programmes. It works in four thematic areas: “Land and water resources management”, “Integrated pest management of Mediterranean fruit and vegetable crops”, “Mediterranean organic agriculture” and “Sustainable agriculture, food and rural development”.
APULIA REGION - CONCILLORSHIP FOR MEDITERRANEAN - ItalyInitiative partner
The Regione Puglia ( Apulia Regional Government) is one of the most active regional public authority in the south of Italy. With its structures, offices and activities, it aims at guaranteeing systematic relations with all the Italian regional governments and with the European Union Institution, in order to support the regional interests and political programme through any useful technical and political initiatives, to assist its own territory in the understanding of National and Community procedures and mechanisms, to strengthen the relations with other European Regional Governments, to take part in national and community programs as well as in the decision making processes concerning the regional policies. In recent years it was involved in several projects and networks reaching a wide experience in coordinating international partnership in the frame of EU projects.
University of Bari - ItalyInitiative partner
he University of Bari is a public organisation, promoting and organising activities of higher education and scientific research. The University of Bari was founded on October, 9th, 1924, on the basis of the King's Decree no. 624/6.4.1924, and started its activity on the same date. The University of Bari promotes any type of useful cooperation with public and private organisations, with particular regards to those related to the right to study; it cooperates to the activity of orientation and general cultural education of students and favours the participation of students to University activities: it organises the didactic activities necessary to the achievement of University degrees (graduation, specialised graduation, specialisation diploma, research doctorate, first- and second-level Master. The University of Bari is open to the problems emerging from the processes of change and development, organising activities of education and cultural promotion. It promotes cooperation with Universities and research Institutes, both in Italy and abroad, particularly within the European Union.
he final objective on the project is to improve sustainable management of high environmental value areas, through the adoption of common guidelines of monitoring, planning and management of the Mediterranean eco-region. In order to favor regional cohesion between ARCHIMED countries, the project proposed the concerted development of common guidelines of monitoring, planning and management of the areas of high environmental value (Natura 2000's sites, IBA). The final results were the development of the Guidelines and of the Indicators' Handbook and their transposition in ARCHIMED countries, the set-up of an innovatory computerized web-based platform (INNOVA Platform) to support the management of areas and a permanent institutional consultation table between the relevant Public Administrations for planning and management (Institutional Network) and the Scientific Institutions (Scientific Network).
INNOVA produced innovation mainly through the means adopted to achieve its goals, as well as through the outputs done. The means required to achieve the objective were: a) a political and scientific network; b) the guidelines for monitoring, planning and management of the areas of high environmental value (HEVA) in pilot projects; c) the network among local authorities responsible of natural area management. The short term outputs were: i) the creation of a network between relevant Public Administrations and the Scientific Institutions; ii) the Guidelines for monitoring, planning and managing HEVAs; iii) a shared system of indicators for sustainable management in ARCHIMED area; iv) an innovatory computerized platform supporting monitoring, planning and management of HEVAs. The main medium-long term outputs were: i) the setting up of the permanent institutional consultation table, b) the adoption of the guidelines for the HEVAs.
The criticalities the project means to solve are:
• Physical degradation of soil and water resources;
• Decreasing habitats and impoverishment of biodiversity
• Fragmentation of the legislative framework between UE and non EU countries;
• An un-shared evaluation system of the environmental quality and sustainability of interventions in
• Differences in managing the areas of high environmental value between the countries of the two
sides of the Mediterranean;
• Absence or partial involvement of local communities in the management of the areas
The identified problems and threats in protected areas in the ARCHIMED region are: i) management needs to be improved; ii) low awareness of protected areas values and threats; iii) weak participatory / co-decision process; iv) human pressure on environment and resources; v) low awareness of physical processes and natural hazards.
The achieved results were: A) An international network between Public Administrations and Scientific Institutions involved in the management of HEVAs; B) A common frame of sustainability goals and indicators; C) A common participatory process involving managers and stakeholders in protected areas; D) the INNOVA Indicator Handbook for the monitoring of degradation of natural resources in the Mediterranean HEVAs; E) An online collection, containing updated common guidelines for planning, management and monitoring of nature areas of the Mediterranean eco-region; F) A web site (www.innovaproject.net) to get access to and interact with the computer-based platform implemented in the course of the project as a support to decision-making (the INNOVA Platform); G) Regional dialogue established; H) Memorandum of Understanding among partners aimed to: develop proposals for funding, maintain dialogue, exchange of information, support platform.
INNOVA was consistent with the ARCHIMED strategy by strengthening international cooperation between institutions and scientific organizations of MPCs. Through the trans-national networking and exchange of knowledge, the validation of common guidelines for the sustainable management of Mediterranean Protected Areas (PAs), was achieved. The direct/indirect beneficiaries of the project were: i) National/Local Public Administrations; ii) Research Bodies; iii) Managers of PAs; iv) Local actors. To meet the needs of these groups, it is required to integrate environmental issues in the economic and sector-based policies, in the implementation of production processes and, finally in the behavior and choices of each single citizen. The project provided MPCs with a ICT platform for the preliminary evaluation of interventions on PAs as well as the effectiveness of their management. The long-term success of the intervention was based on the establishment of a permanent consultation table.
The coordination of the project was led by the staff of Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari where project coordinator was Dr. Claudio Bogliotti with researchers, technical researcher, financial officer and segretary of the project.
From University of Bari, department of informatics collaborated the director of this Univeristy and from Agricultural University collaborated also scientific researchers.
One of the main problem encountered during the starting of the project was the loss of 2 Non-EU partners (Libya and Israel); for this reason the Lead Partner had to re-submit the Technical Annex with some modifications, causing a delay in the start of the administrative procedures. Due to the political situation, the Palestinian Partner was not able to fully participate to the pilot activities as well as to some international Network's Meetings. Because of this administrative problems and the delay in the signature of the Subsidy Contract, most of the Partners were not able to spend their budget in the starting phase of the project. This led to a 19% budget reduction by the Managing Authority. This was the main cause of the re-submission of the Application Form, with re-arrangement of the total budget and the deletion of some activities. Some delays occurred during the implementation of the final stakeholders' workshops led to a late submission of the Case Study Reports.
Being aimed at promoting cross-border cooperation between public administrations, in order to enable sustainable and shared development of protected areas in the ARCHIMED region, the INNOVA project did not realize physical infrastructure having direct/indirect impacts on the environment. The Guidelines developed and shared in the course of the project, when adopted, enable the sustainable management of natural resources in protected areas. All software used in the creation of the Platform INNOVA were open sources and therefore did not need to purchase licenses. The workshops and local events were carried out respecting the environment and reducing impacts. In the realization of publications it was preferred to adopt electronic versions, reducing the number of hard copies printed.
The sustainability of the project outputs was highlighted by the establishment of a permanent institutional table for monitoring, management and planning of Protected Areas (PAs). A Memorandum of Understanding among Public Administration was agreed, for the establishment of the “table”. Others sustainability elements: i) the common guidelines for PAs management and a system of sustainability indicators to evaluate the effectiveness of their management; ii) a participatory system for the governance of PAs using also informatics tool (the platform) to evaluate the effectiveness of management; iii) the scientific network to share scientific knowledge favoured by the implementation of the website; iv) the involvement of local actors in implementing pilot projects; v) the implementation of the platform using open-source software making this technology available for further applications in other projects. vi) A scientific paper published.
Dissemination was based on the INNOVA website/platform. INNOVA was presented to some public events as the MEDITERRE Fair, a Mediterranean scientific exhibition (27 September - 1 October 2006), and to the Final Seminar on “Planning and Sustainable Management of Coastal Zones and High Environmental value Areas” (17 - 18 December 2007). A Training course was organized transferring facilitation technologies to involve local actors in the monitoring/evaluation process as well as to feed possible gaps and harmonise a common approach to field survey and works in pilots project. 3 full-day training for trainers (26 - 28 February 2007) was conducted, to train partners in the “Protected Area Sustainability Evaluation of Management Performance” (PASEMP) methodology as well as in facilitation methods in order to be able to replicate the process in their case study sites. More traditional dissemination tools as project's brochure,