Breaking news : the Memorandum of Understanding has been signed. Please find all information here.

The North Sea Open Science Conference 2016 #NSOSC16: Get a state-of-the-art overview of the North Sea environment and actively discuss its current and future management with all key actors!
Oceans and seas are of capital importance to their bordering countries and beyond. This particularly holds true for the North Sea surrounded by heavily populated and industrialised countries.  Industries have been exploiting the North Sea for many decades. This ever expanding exploitation asks for a well-deliberated management that allows for a sustainable conservation of the marine ecosystem’s structures, functions and services. Managerial frameworks such as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive are key to such ecosystem-based management within which industrial aspirations and environmental concerns are assessed and deliberated. Evidence-based management builds on a firm knowledge base on ecosystem structures and functions, how these are potentially impacted by human activities, and how they can be best managed. The conference will specifically address these concerns, screen state-of-the-art knowledge, discuss and search for solutions and prospects to enlarge the scientific basis for an ecosystem-based management of the North Sea.

Not just another marine science conference!
The North Sea Open Science Conference 2016 is an open science conference. We particularly envisage a high level of cross-disciplinarity, targeting participants with different backgrounds and interests. Environmental scientists (chemistry, sedimentology, physics, biology,…), social scientists, policy makers, marine managers and industries,… all are key to make this conference a success! Together, we will search for answers to the challenging questions of how to best manage and safeguard our North Sea. We are happy to announce that the already 140+ registered participants nicely cover the targeted cross-disciplinarity. Inspired by state-of-the-art keynotes, oral presentations, innovative participatory sessions and guided poster walks, we will collectively review the North Sea’s knowledge base, evaluate its present-day research and management practices, and design concepts for a better management. Check the conference programme at to learn more about this exciting North Sea Journey!

Side events
A multitude of side events open to all participants will stimulate interactions. Witness the official signing of the Blue Growth Memorandum of Understanding by the Belgian Secretary of State for the North Sea and the Belgian maritime industries. The guided thematic poster walks will make a poster session never to be the same again. Be surprised by a nice seaview conference dinner. Relax and learn during theguided birding trip to the 'Zwin' nature reserve, an example of nature conservation and engineering at a heavily urbanised coast – and many more!
Come join us for a unique science-policy-society trialogue on the North Sea!

- Open registration : until October 31, 2016

All presenters (oral and poster) will be offered submission of their results for publication in a special issue of the international scientific journal Hydrobiologia (Impact Factor: 2.275). Acceptance for publication will be based on the standard evaluation procedures of the journal, including peer review.

Information and contact:


Icon Abstract Booklet - North Sea Open Science Conference (2.8 MB)