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Our project aims to show how ecosystem-based fisheries management can be made operational in Europe


The Making the European Fisheries Ecosystem Plan Operational (MEFEPO) project was designed to further development of a framework, and the supporting evidence base (natural and social science), to integrate the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) objectives within a reformed Common Fisheries Policy in the context of ecosystem based fisheries management (EBFM).

The transition to EBFM has considerable implications for the knowledge base required to support management, and requires new approaches to integrate and combine data on the ecological, social and economic pillars of sustainability.  This transition also requires appropriate institutional structures to enable successful implementation. 

The MEFEPO project started in September 2008 and finished in November 2011.  During this period the project team developed Fisheries Ecosystem Plans (FEPs) for three region seas (North Sea, North Western Waters and South Western Waters) in support of operational EBFM in Europe.  The framework developed for the FEPs consisted of two key elements: (1) an institutional structure that can support greater stakeholder involvement in fisheries management at an appropriate geographical (regional) scale; and (2) a decision-support management tool (management strategy evaluation matrix) to help stakeholders and decision-makers to simultaneously consider ecological, social and economic implications of management decisions.

The reports and outputs from the project, and details of the dissemination activities, are all available on this website.  Please contact us if you have any comments regarding the MEFEPO project (   


New - the following article has recently been published highlighting the work of MEFEPO

Funded by the European Commission