Sustainable coastal Systems


Scientific Context

Coastal systems named hereafter socioecosystems have long provided human societies with a multitude of services:

  • – maritime transport and trade,
  • – fossil and renewable energies,
  • – fisheries and aquaculture,
  • – ecological hotspot for biodiversity,
  • – regulation of biogeochemical cycles and tourism.

Those systems, thanks to their vegetated areas, for instance, strongly help for coastal sediment stabilisation, for filtration/buffering of polluted waters and for stocking blue carbon against the climate change.

At the same time, coasts are among the most heterogeneous, dynamic and fragile environments on Earth with, however, limited supporting capacities to such risks.

This vulnerability is partly related to coastal hazards, to sea-level rise, to pollutions and land using.

This negatively impacts sediment budget and transport processes, biogeochemical budgets, habitat loss, ecosystems stability and productivity, functional role of biodiversity and the way to manage coastal systems and the growing social and economic associated activities.

Specific Objectives

Theme 3 will tackle the so-called “coastal challenge”, which aims at developing coherent and long-term strategies for integrated coastal zone management for sustainable coastal systems.

Theme 3 will link its expertise in hydrodynamic through remote sensing and numerical models development for coastal risks assessment.

It will encourage research on socioecosystems adaptability and resilience over various time and spatial scales by promoting disciplinary research in geography, physic, sedimentology, ecology, biogeochemistry, ecotoxicology, human sciences.

Interdisciplinary approach will help at understanding the links between the human groups since the beginning of the Holocene until the modern period and the coastal environment, the integration of the socioecosystems becoming necessary for an integrative approach of coastal management.

Strong links could be developed with industrial and local partners in developing new generations of unpollutant and safetier coastal ships.

Finally, it will be mandatory to have a closer look to socio-economic studies on coastal growth patterns and the combined impacts of local amenities and natural risks.