SYMBIOSES: Ecosystem based management (completed)

Constructing an integrated modelling framework for decision support in ecosystem-based management: case study Lofoten/Barents Sea

For detailed information about this project, see the SYMBIOSES website

About the project

The project aim is to provide more quantitative information on the risks and benefits of petroleum development in a given region. Our test area will be for the Barents Sea/Lofoten region with initial focus on the simultaneous effects of fisheries and petroleum activities on fish and plankton communities. This is an area where sufficient baseline data and scientific knowledge exists. In principle, this integrated modeling framework may be adapted for use in other marine areas. The model system proposed here will add more value to ecological risk assessment by allowing exploration of possible outcomes of a range of risk scenarios. This integrated modeling system further provides a framework to synthesize and organize knowledge acquisition activities and thereby improve the identification of knowledge gaps requiring future financing.

The main features of the modeling system are:

  • An integrated modeling framework located on the Norwegian national supercomputer facility
  • Individual models connected to the framework: adult fish, fish eggs & juveniles, phyto- and zoo- plankton, chemical fate and ecotoxicology
  • Realistic predictions with quantification of uncertainty
  • A management tool for spatial/temporal planning and risk reduction
  • An impact and risk calculation tool to support go/no-go decisions

This new modeling system is expected to become an essential aid to ecosystem-based management, decision making
and stakeholder communication for spatially managed areas.


This project funded by the Research Council of Norway through Akvaplan-niva AS 


University of Tromsø (NOTUR)
Institute of Marine Research (IMR)
SINTEF Materials and Chemistry
SINTEF Fisheries & Aquaculture
Ghent University (Belgium)
Institute for Marine Resources & Ecosystem Studies (Netherlands)
Institute for Water and Wetlands, Radboud University (Netherlands)
Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA)

See the SYMBIOSES website for a complete list.


Start: 1.7.2011. End: 30.06.2014.


Published Apr. 25, 2012 1:56 PM - Last modified Oct. 14, 2016 11:03 AM