virtual training course on coastal management in the Mediterranean



Ms. Daria Povh Škugor, PAP/RAC Senior Programme Officer, conceived and created the MedOpen virtual training course. She also co-ordinated the MedOpen ICZM Advanced training sessions from 2004 until 2011. During that period, valuable technical support to the successful and smooth development of the MedOpen sessions was provided by students doing their professional practice at PAP/RAC.

The ICZM Advanced training sessions were prepared from 2002-2004, while the first MedOpen ICZM Advanced was implemented in the autumn 2004. In 2005, the contents were translated into French, and the ICZM Advanced in French was implemented in 2006. During 2006/2007, the SMAP Regional Management and Support Unit (RMSU) from Rome, Italy, translated the Basic and the Advanced materials into Arabic, within the EU financed SMAP III Programme.

The materials were further updated prior to the 2010/11 MedOpen ICZM Advanced training session. This session was of significant importance, particularly because of the inclusion of the ICZM Protocol in the lecture contents. In this way, the MedOpen has contributed to dissemination of the knowledge of the Protocol's importance. Namely, the development, signature and the ratification of the ICZM Protocol was the turning-point in the Mediterranean coastal zone management.

In 2012, the next MedOpen ICZM Advanced was developed in the frame of the EU-funded Pegaso project with one of its work packages (WP6) devoted to education and training. As one of the Pegaso partners, PAP/RAC thus started delivering the on-line session in ICZM with particular focus on the ICZM process, which has been agreed by the Pegaso project as an absolute need for the partners. Out of 35 candidates who applied for the training, 15 actively participated and were awarded the MedOpen ICZM Advanced certificate.

In 2013, the ICZM Advanced was organised for the SHAPE project partners with the aim of getting them acquainted with the ICZM in general and in more detail with the ICZM process being crucial for the implementation of SHAPE Pilot Projects. Out 22 candidates who applied for the training, 14 actively participated and were awarded the MedOpen ICZM Advanced certificate.

Early 2016, the ICZM Basic contents were translated into Italian in order to organise the ICZM Basic training for the local stakeholders in the frame of the CAMP Italy. A test platform in Italian was presented at the CAMP Mid-term conference held end March 2016. The aim of this training is to make the local stakeholders familiar with the ICZM issues and enhance their knowledge in this field.

In order to respond to the great interest of target users, in particular those coming from the French speaking Mediterranean countries, PAP/RAC decided to organize the MedOpen ICZM Advanced training session in French. The session has started in autumn 2016 and lasted for 12 weeks.

Aim and objectives

The aim of the MedOpen ICZM training is to improve capacities for coastal management, which will subsequently facilitate sustainable coastal development in the Mediterranean.

Its main objectives are:

  • to promote ICZM as a sustainable approach to coastal management;
  • to present the basics of ICZM, benefits, actors and responsibilities, legislation and finances needed, the ICZM process, tools and techniques, as well as good practices in coastal management;
  • to provide students with the opportunity to experience a simulated coastal management situation and participate in finding practical sustainable solutions;
  • to improve the Mediterranean coastal management networking and to promote the Internet use among coastal management practitioners in Mediterranean countries.


The MedOpen ICZM contents are available to users through the Basic and Advanced modules of the training programme.

The contents of the Basic module are continuously available to users and open to everyone. The development of this Basic training is completely automated. It provides elementary information on coastal management in the Mediterranean contained in 12 lectures followed by a short test.

The contents of the Advanced module are available only to participants of the Advanced training sessions being announced and organised regularly by PAP/RAC. This Advanced training requires a higher degree of commitment by trainees. Namely, each of the 12 Advanced lectures is followed by the additional reading materials, i.e. scientific articles and reports. The Advanced trainees regularly and actively participate in Forum discussions on the topics elaborated in the lectures, as well as on the issues introduced by the lecturers in the discussion stimulating questions. During the practical Simulation Game, they participate in finding practical sustainable solutions for a simulated coastal management situation. These solutions are presented in a jointly prepared report at the end of the training. The preparation of a Final essay and a joint Simulation Game report is an excellent opportunity for trainees to apply knowledge obtained and skills learned during the training. Their work is assessed by the Head lecturer and the Simulation Game co-ordinator. Trainees whose overall work is positively assessed are awarded the MedOpen ICZM Advanced certificate.