The EU-CONEXUS teaching, research and innovation programmes include the totality of social, economic and environmental problems and opportunities that coastline areas are facing today.
EU‐CONEXUS is focused on urban and semi‐urban coastlines because they are increasingly densely populated areas and very important for inter aliatrade, aquaculture and fisheries, energy, tourism. At the same time these coastlines are most vulnerable areas with regard to the consequences of climate change. These characteristics ask for an integrated management, risk assessment and planning by working across sectors and disciplines.
Reflecting the most important current social, economic, technical and environmental challenges impacting coastlines, the study programme will be focused on four interdisciplinary study dimensions:
(1) The focus “Environment and biodiversity” investigates risks and opportunities for the ecosystem: e.g. biodiversity, properties of the coastline, migration flows, life quality on coastlines, biotechnology/health, landscape planning, legal issues, and maritime engineering.
(2) The dimension “Energy and sustainable construction” is studied in laboratories working on construction/urban microclimate, the eco‐efficiency of energy, resilience (durability) of materials and construction works.
(3) The “Digital transformation”, as one of the major transitions impacting our societies, entails studies on the legal, administrative, cultural implications of dematerialisation and of the valorisation of material (cultural heritage) or digital resources (data protection, data security, democratisation of the “internet of objects”, digital humanities’ resources).
(4) The focus “Culture, society, organisation, education” takes on a social sciences and humanities’ perspective and tries to define what “living on an urban coastline” means, by, in particular, taking into account sustainability issues and thereby relating to the other three dimensions: environment, sustainable construction and the digital transformation.
EU-CONEXUS will show off new ways of Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) working across sectoral, disciplinary and institutional boundaries and contribute to the development of a European Coastal Policy by increasing coordination between different policy areas.