Over the summer of 2020 the Irish Sea Maritime Forum, supported by the University of Liverpool, conducted an online survey to develop a comprehensive picture of the future for the Irish Sea and its communities on a whole Irish Sea scale.
The aim of the survey was to discover and extend understanding of what makes the Irish Sea special for those who use it or live around it, identifying both challenges and opportunities, now and looking forward, for the Irish Sea’s businesses, communities and environment. To explore these questions a thematic approach was taken, but with the understanding that many issues are cross-cutting, particularly themes such as climate change.
Different stakeholders have different perspectives on the Irish Sea and its value to them. This survey captured a wide range of views on the reasons why the Irish Sea is an important and special place. From these a draft set of Irish Sea Headlines were developed. These will be tested and refined at the next Irish Sea Maritime Forum conference with a view to the headlines being a valuable tool for use by organisations developing policy or projects in the Irish Sea area.
The headlines are as follows:
– Economic benefits: A wide range of coastal and maritime industries – in particular tourism, ports and shipping, fisheries and energy generation – support local jobs.
– Social benefits: People enjoy the amenity value the Irish Sea and its coastline provide to them, including opportunities for recreation and exercise and the more intangible benefits for health and wellbeing provided by enjoying open spaces and attractive views.
As part of the research respondents were also asked to identify up to three top issues and opportunities for a range of thematic areas. Again, these findings will be tested and refined at the next Irish Sea Maritime Forum conference with a view to the research being a valuable tool for use by organisations developing policy or projects in the Irish Sea area.
The Executive Summary can be downloaded here
The Full Report can be downloaded here