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BONUS BALTCOAST: BONUS BALTCOAST Case Study Denmark: Fish distribution & productivity in Inner Danish waters

Type of Entry: Case Study
Website: http://www.baltcoast.net/fish-productivity.html
Duration: 01/04/2015 - 31/03/2018


The case study was initiated by coastal fishermen complaining about declining catches of cod and plaice in coastal areas. Preliminary data analyses using depth to delineate between coastal and offshore areas showed decline in the distribution of all age classes of plaice in the North Sea and of cod in inner Danish waters.


  • Relationships between fish stocks, fish catches and environmental variables were explored with the aim to underlying processes and provide empirically based advice to fisheries management.


  • The case study was initiated by coastal fishermen and led by DTU Aqua. The governance system relevant to the issue was mapped following the SAF protocol.

 ICZM tools applied within the case study:

  • SAF;
  • Auxiliary tools.

Case study site highlights and experiences that can be exchanged:

  • The causal relationship between declining fish stocks (and/or offshore migration) and climatic and environmental drivers were difficult to disentangle and further complicated by adaptive fishermen behaviour. This slowed down the ICM (SAF) process by lengthening the Formulation Step;
  • Multiple structural changes in the governance system during the ICM process caused delays and interruptions of the stakeholder engagement and dialog;
  • High risk – high priority of issue;
  • Identification of potential causal relationships that could lead to sustainable management options;
  •  Good close collaboration with stakeholders.




  • Ecological-Social-Economic (ESE) assessment following the SAF protocol and based on close stakeholder collaboration throughout the process.


  • Highly complex ecosystem and data poor area.


  • Sustainable fisheries management for coastal systems.


  • Changes in governance structure and implementation potential.
Keywords: Climate change, Fishery and Aquaculture, Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)
Contact: Ms. Grete E. Dinesen
DTU Aqua
2800 Kgs. Lyngby
Telephone: +45 21 31 51 37
Website: http://www.aqua.dtu.dk/
Partner: BaltCoast project partners (http://www.baltcoast.net/case-study-sites.html)
Financed by: BONUS BALTCOAST project has received funding from BONUS (Art 185), funded jointly by the EU and Baltic Sea national funding institutions. (https://www.bonusportal.org/)