DEVOTES-EUROMARINE Summer School 'Interactive assessment of marine systems: the Ecosystem Approach in practice'

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General information

This is the 12th AZTI’s Marine Research Division Summer School and the third one organized within the European FP7 project “DEVOTES” (Development of innovative tools for understanding marine biodiversity and assessing good environmental status:, in which most of the teachers of this Summer School are involved.

The course falls into the first scientific priority and emerging fields identified by the FP7 EuroMarine programme (Understanding marine ecosystems for healthy oceans). Additionally, it could be considered one of the six ‘emerging fields’ identified: “Complex interactions including tipping points, regime shifts and shifting assemblages in marine ecosystems”, since the management of marine ecosystems require a deep understanding of:
(i) the complex interactions between human pressures and ecosystem responses;
(ii) the interactions between the multiple ecosystem components, often non-linear by nature;
(iii) the shifting baselines of the targets used to assess environmental status, underlying different components of global change;
(iv) the pluridisciplinary dimension of ecosystem management (including the scientific diversity among managers and scientists) and
(v) the need to address both socio-economic and environmental issues.

This course also addresses technical developments or methodological issues, such as those linked to the different methods needed to assess the marine ecosystem status in an integrative way (under an ecosystem-based approach), approaches needed to aggregate information at multiple scales (spatial, temporal, across ecosystem and biodiversity components, etc.) or new monitoring methods needed to get cost-effective tools to assess the status of marine ecosystems (e.g. using genomic tools, acoustic devices, etc.). This way, the course build across the 3 primary communities included in Euromarine: EUR-OCEANS (because of the strong management and scientific background of the course), Marine Genomics Europe (because of the important development in DEVOTES linked to genomics at different biodiversity levels, that will be included in the course) and MARBEF (because of the importance of biological components in assessing the status of marine waters, as highlighted in this course). This represents a positive networking role of the summer school, bringing together different members of those communities with a common objective. Download the programme

Learning outcome:

The attendees will acquire new knowledge on recent trends in marine research, related to management of our oceans. This course will explore the potential and recent advances in the integrative assessment of marine systems (based upon strong new monitoring tools, such as genomics), including the various ecosystem components (from plankton to marine mammals), at different scales (from water bodies to regional seas), in management applications (e.g. to the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), the Water Framework Directive (WFD), etc.). Hence, the main objective of the school is to give an overview on the integrative assessment to ocean and coastal management using an ecosystem approach view.

Contact Person: Dr Angel Borja (


The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.


Venue: Aquarium of Donostia- San Sebastián
San Sebastián, Spain

Aquarium of San Sebastián
Jacques Cousteau Plaza 1,
20003 San Sebastián, Guipúzcoa


Early-bird registration (until 30th April) 80 €
Early-bird student registration (until 30th April)  65 €
Standard registration (from 1st May to 3rd June) 110 €
Standard student registration (from 1st May to 3rd June)  90 €


The summer school is not only for students, it is open to PhD students, post-docs and researchers aimed to look at new tools on integrative assessment.

Application Procedure:

Please register and pay unsing the online form. Registration from 20th January to 3rd June.

All attendees have the possibility of submitting a poster with their own research, to be discussed with the professors in a session the second day. Please, send your abstract to: before the 20th MayAbstract (max 200 words), including:

  • What assessing problem does your poster address?
  • What were the main research methods you used?
  • What are your most important results? 

Please, take into account that: 

  • Size must be A0 , orientation: Landscape
  • Title: max 20 words

Grant Opportunities:

There will be 10 student fee grants for students from developing countries, with the following criteria:

  • To qualify you must originate from and also be living or studying in one of the countries listed here.  
  • Be student (undergraduate or PhD)
  • Present a poster to the summer school
  • Under the basis of first arrival, first serving. 


Academic level: Master, PhD, Lifelong Learning
Occupations (not validated):
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