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Towards the joint Baltic Sea and the North Sea research and innovation programme

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - BANOS CSA (Towards the joint Baltic Sea and the North Sea research and innovation programme)

Reporting period: 2020-05-01 to 2021-10-31

Responding to the specific challenges identified in the call BG-01-2018, BANOS CSA built a joint framework to address the five main strategic objectives that are vital for broader EU policy as well as for development in the macro-regions of the Baltic Sea and the North Sea:
-Structuring the Baltic Sea and the North Sea EU member states’ marine and maritime research and innovation effort for concerted and efficient responses to the basin-wide challenges.
-Promoting interdisciplinary research and innovation that enables ecosystem-based management of human activities along the land-coast-sea continuum, protecting the sustainability of marine ecosystem services thereby supporting the goals of achieving and maintaining good environmental status in these seas with links to their catchment areas, improving the observation, assessment and forecasting capacity of the natural and societal systems under global change.
-Delivering new knowledge base for appraising the socio-economic value of marine ecosystem services and providing innovative tools for comprehensive planning and management of maritime activities and mitigating the trade-offs. This will contribute to the European Green Deal and its implementation in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region as well as the relevant policy frameworks in the North Sea region.
-Achieving the level of knowledge uptake and collaboration necessary for jointly devising fit-for-purpose regulations, policies, management tools, practices, and incentives and stimulating innovative technologies of maritime industries.
-Delivering new knowledge base for supporting inclusive accessibility of the blue growth benefits across regions, states, occupations, social groups and genders.

The overarching objective of the Baltic and North Sea Coordination and Support Action (BANOS CSA) was to create the necessary conditions for durable coordination of research and innovation efforts in the North Sea and Baltic Sea region by preparing a framework for launching a new joint Baltic Sea and North Sea research and innovation programme, from here on referred to as the joint Baltic and North Sea Research and Innovation Programme (BANOS) as planned and foreseen in the BANOS CSA.

The action drew on the experience of BONUS Art. 185 in close collaboration with the relevant research networks in Europe.
BANOS CSA aimed to ensure that BANOS will create strong EU added value and have an international standing through:
-Strong visibility and impact among the scientific community and other key stakeholders. This was achieved by creating an efficient communications and stakeholder engagement framework and establishing strategies seeking synergies and harmonisation with the relevant regional sea conventions and ongoing national, regional, EU and international initiatives and institutions, as well as reinforcing pan-European collaboration among the regional sea basin programmes.
-Scientific integration: This was achieved by developing a joint strategic research and innovation agenda (SRIA) in thorough consultation with the relevant stakeholders.
-Administrative integration: This was achieved by preparing the options of different delivery mechanisms of the joint agenda (e.g. an identification of most suitable dedicated implementation structure (DIS) equipped with the necessary governance, administrative, management and legal operating procedures, participation mechanisms for entities of the participating states and of other EU Member States and Associated Countries as well as potential international partners by bringing together main national funding agencies and programme owners of the participating states. -
-Financial integration: This was achieved by designing a sound financing structure for the programme corresponding the high financial integration level aspired to and the ambitious funding volume committed.
The work performed is summarized in Figure 1. In total all 35 deliverables were completed and eight milestones reached. For more details on these, please see sections deliverables and milestones, respectively.
During its implementation BANOS CSA has:
-Established a close cooperation network among the key public R&I funders in the Baltic Sea and North Sea MS & AC
-Created one uniform brand which defines all brand elements, including the name, the joint Baltic and North Sea Research and Innovation Programme (BANOS)
-Explored the relevant landscapes of the stakeholders and the national level R&I priorities
-Outlined the stakeholder engagement strategy for BANOS
-Defined the scope and thematic framework of BANOS
-Mapped the national marine and maritime research priorities in BANOS participant states
-Progressed with co-design of the BANOS SRIA together with stakeholders
-Published The Baltic and North Sea Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda BANOS SRIA 2021; Koho K.A. A. Andrusaitis, M. Sirola, et al. (2021). The Baltic and North Sea Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda, BANOS SRIA 2021. BANOS CSA/D1.5
-Established a viable contact network for optimal integration of UK
-Explored the diversity in the national funding landscape
-Finalised the key impact enabling strategies for BANOS including inter alia integration of research and innovation, knowledge synthesis and advancement of citizen science in marine and maritime research
-Proposed impact monitoring indicators and mechanisms and created guidelines for applicants
-Proactively established close coordination network with JPI Oceans and the European regional sea’s R&I initiatives.
-Contributed to drafting a proposal for the European Partnership on Climate neutral, sustainable and productive blue economy.
-Mapped the marine CS activities in the Baltic Sea region
-Contributed to activities of the EU4Ocean Platform activities to enhance and create awareness of marine CS activities in BANOS region.
-Contributed to draft SRIA for the European Partnership on Climate neutral, sustainable and productive blue economy; titled “Horizon Europe candidate partnership. A climate neutral, sustainable and productive blue economy. Draft Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (2021)”.
Figure 1. Work performed and main results achieved during the implementation of BANOS CSA.