The final conference of the HATCH project (Hadriaticum DATA HUB. Data management, protocols harmonization, preparations of guidelines: cross-border tools for maritime spatial planning decision-makers), organized by the University Department of Maritime Studies, took place June 21 at Park Hotel in Split.
Goal of the HATCH project is to unify results of previous projects from the EU cross-border cooperation program, Interreg Italy-Croatia, in order to develop protocols for applying collected chemical, physical, biological and ecological parameters from various monitoring programs for use in marine areas’ spatial planning, which contributes to the effective protection of Adriatic Sea. Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP), one of main topics in the HATCH project, is a process used to manage and distribute the use of marine space in a sustainable manner. MSP’s aim is to balance various activities at sea, such as fishing, maritime transport, tourism, exploitation of energy sources and scientific research, with the objectives of protecting marine environment and ensuring long-term sustainability of marine resources.
With that in mind, HATCH project’s final conference brought together Italian and Croatian experts who worked on the project, as well as representatives of other projects, scientific research institutes and associations, with the aim of presenting and promoting project results and improving future cooperation between institutions, further developing maritime spatial planning processes in the Adriatic area.
In addition to HATCH project, other projects dealing with the marine areas’ spatial planning were also discussed at the conference.
Apart from University of Udine as a leading member, other partners in the project are the CORILA consortium for coordinating research in the Venice lagoon, the Marche region’s Department for Water, Soil and Coastal Protection, Blue World Institute for Research and Marine Protection, University of Split’s Department of Marine Studies and Istria Polytechnic – METRIS Centre. Total value of the HATCH project is EUR 566,000, and it is co-financed by EU’s ERDF, cross-border cooperation program Interreg Italy-Croatia.