Measuring, Monitoring and Promoting an environmentally sustainable economy in the Mediterranean region


The project aims to identify indicators, select tools and recommend policies to promote an environmentally sustainable economy in the Mediterranean region, called "Blue Economy" as per the Paris Declaration of the Barcelona convention

First, with the support of an international multi-stakeholders advisory board, it will propose a concrete definition of the "Blue Economy", defined as an environmentally sustainable economy in the Mediterranean that values and protects the natural ecosystem health. It will analyze gaps and synergies with other comparable sustainable development strategies at global level (such as green economy, green growth, resource efficiency, circular economy...) and at Mediterranean level (such as the MSSD, the Mediterranean SCP Action Plan, the Ecosystem Approach, the ICZM protocol...).

Secondly it will undertake a critical review of the existing indicators, processes and tools aiming to on one hand to link natural environment and economic development such as ecological footprint, ecosystem services, natural capital, among others and on the other hand achieve the Blue Economy vision at operational level through programs of measures such as policies, best practices....  It will identify which one might be more relevant for the Mediterranean region to propose a set of indicators for the support of a "Blue Economy" implementation. The existing works related to green economy and/or green growth indicators such as "Moving Towards a Common Approach on Green Growth Indicators" (Green Growth Knowledge Platform-GGKP) will be especially considered.

Thirdly, the core set of indicators will be simplified and modelized to allow a dashboard visualization of the environmental, social and economic trends regarding the “Blue Economy”.  This Mediterranean sustainability Dashboard will be further developed as web based interactive simulation tool and available on-line. A set of national and regional policies will be recommended to promote a sustainable "Blue Economy" vision in the Mediterranean.

During the period of the project:

  • An exhibition and several workshops will be organised for supporting the implementation of the "Blue economy". They will be based on some promising eco and social innovation cases (stories of entrepreneurs, change makers, policy initiatives)
  • Several conferences and events will be organized within regional/national forums (such as European Roundtable on Sustainable Production and Consumption, Mediterranean Economic week) to include feedbacks from key stakeholders (NGOs, business sector, local and national authorities, IGOs...). Additionally, a simplified version of the indicators, tools and policies will be prepared to create a basic web based simulation application where users (policy makers, decision makers, researchers, CSOs, students...) can play with the past, current and future trends to see the impacts on their decision on the economic and environmental development of the region.

Finally the final outcomes (recommended range of indicators, innovations, tools and policies for a Blue Economy) will be included in strategic documents of Mediterranean governance processes through multilateral negotiations (such as MSSD review working groups, Mediterranean SCP Action plan consultation process, and MCSD meetings) in order to be approved and recommended as a positive contribution for the sustainable development of the region.


This 18 months project mainly funded by the MAVA foundation aims to “identify indicators, select tools and recommend policies to promote the "blue economy", defined as a sustainable economy in the Mediterranean valuing and protecting healthy environmental ecosystems”

Main objectives​

The Blue economy project main objectives are:

  • to define a vision and definition of the sustainable economy in the Mediterranean region based on healthy environmental eco-systems that is shared and acknowledged by all relevant Mediterranean stakeholders;
  • to integrate the tools and measures defined by that blue economy vision within  four main on-going regional processes contributing to the identification of measures and objectives for sustainable development in the Mediterranean: MSSD review, ECAP, Mediterranean SCP Action Plan and ICZM Protocol.

In order to achieve these objectives, a crucial point is to involve regional stakeholders in the project to mainstream the concept of Blue economy. To this end, a steering committee, involving Plan Bleu, SCP/RAC and PAP/RAC, in their quality of regional activity centers to the Barcelona convention, working on themes related to Blue Economy, will give the strategic directions throughout the project. 

Operational objectives are:

  • Plan Bleu, SCP/RAC, PAP/RAC involved in the drafting of the vision and definition with the support of a “strategic” advisory board
  • Plan Bleu, SCP/RAC, PAP/RAC mainstream blue economy's identified tools and measures in the corresponding governance processes lead by each of them Likewise, the project proposes to ensure the establishment of bridges linking those mentioned governance process under the Blue Economy umbrella.


Due mainly to lack of awareness and institutional support, most of the policy designers and decision makers still don't take into account the link between healthy environment and sound economy. As a result, public policies aims generally to increase short term economic production (i.e. GDP), balance fiscal policies (i.e. public debt) or improve social well-being (i.e housing and infrastructures construction) without considering all the environmental externalities (such as resource depletion or biodiversity endangerment) that will reduce the long term sustainability of such economic development. <read more>

Partners and components

The project will be implemented by 3 Mediterranean Action Plan / Regional Activity Centres (Sustainable Consumption and Production Regional Activity Centre - SCP/RAC, Priority Actions Programme Regional Activity Centre - PAP/RAC and Plan Bleu) with the participation of the major stakeholders gathered in an Advisory board.

The 3 components will be implemented by the 3 Regional Activity Centres:

  • Define and monitor the environmentally sustainable economy: Plan Bleu
  • Support the implementation of an environmentally sustainable economy: SCP/RAC
  • Promote and mainstream an environmentally sustainable economy: PAP/RAC

Specific objectives,activities and results



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