The Marine Strategy Directive requires European Union Member States to develop science-based marine strategies with the involvement of stakeholders, in order that Europe's marine environment reaches 'good environmental status' by 2021. The scientific requirements of marine strategies are clearly defined within the Directive, however, the requirements related to stakeholder involvement are not. This paper presents a critical analysis of the provisions for stakeholder involvement with in the Marine Strategy Directive. In particular, the paper is focused upon the definition of stakeholder, the sequencing of involvement, and the form and purpose of involvement. The critique is set within an evaluative framework that considers policy-making to be a social process, rather than a purely scientific one. It is concluded that the Marine Strategy Directive lacks coherency with respect to stakeholder involvement which may perpetuate the traditional tension between marine science and policy. This in turn may compromise the ability of the Directive to protect Europe's marine environment.
- Marine Strategy Directive
- Stakeholder involvement