ADAPT-MED research project is launched!

adaptmed copyADAPT-MED is a European research project which accompanies local decision-makers in elaborating adaptation strategies to climate and global change in a context of uncertainty, coastal risks, endangerment of ecosystems, as well as urban and water management issues. Partners from France (ACTeon and BRGM), Greece (University of Athens) and Portugal (ISCTE-Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, University of Aveiro-CESAM) will work in three distinct research sites on how knowledge affects perceptions on climate change and how perceptions affect decision-making at all levels (economic, social, environmental policies) when dealing with climate change. It is innovative in the sense that it joins psychological, socio-economic, political science and scientific (geographic, geomorphologic and marine biologic) skills in one project. The project was launched in December 2013 and will last 24 months.

Is current decision making “adapted to internalize adaptation” into policy making?
Launched within Circle-2 research program on “Water and Adaptation to Climate Change from a natural and social science perspective in coastal Mediterranean areas”, ADAPT-MED questions whether current decision making is “adapted to internalize adaptation” into policy making in a context of ongoing climate change and emerging societal challenges linked to water resources and ecosystem services’ protection. While a) climate change impacts assessments on coastal zones have been made, and b) generic methods to inform decision makers in a context of uncertainty exist, these have rarely been a) connected to decision making on adaption strategies, often because of the uncertainties associated to climate change impacts and b) set up at regional and local scales.

Project Outline
To address the question raised above, ADAPT-MED will first collect and build a knowledge database for well-selected regional research sites, namely: the territory around the Ria de Aveiro coastal lagoon in Portugal, the region “Provences-Alpes-Côte d’Azur” in France and the Eastern coast of Crete (Greece). All these coastal regions have been affected by increased urbanization in the last century, and will be diversely affected by the adverse effects of climate change on water resources, aquatic ecosystems and urban infrastructure.
In particular, ADAPT-MED will investigate:

1)    How adaptation is currently being practiced in these regions and how this relates to other regulatory mechanisms on land use planning and risk prevention.
2)    What adaptation measures would be desirable and how can they be mainstreamed/integrated within current policy, decision making and regulatory mechanisms.
3)    How changes in understanding, perception and values can result in changes in climate change adaptation decisions.
In the context of its launching, ADAPT-MED will soon have its own website (, under development) where information regarding outreach activities (participation to seminars, symposia, deliverables, etc.), case studies and partners’ presentation, etc. will be published on a regular basis. The study’s presentation note is already available here.

Coastal fringe in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (France). Photo Credit: Alexis Stepanian, BRGM
Coastal fringe in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (France). Photo Credit: Alexis
Stepanian, BRGM

For more information, please visit the project website


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