Mangrovens reforestation project in India | Photo: Ulrich Saint-Paul

06.07.2018 | The cooperation of India and Germany in science and technology has grown over the past years with a view to fostering and diversifying collaborations. The Indian and German parliament decided to increase cooperation efforts for Indo-German research.  During a visit of the Indian Ministry for Science and Technology (DST) in Germany in September 2016 the Marine Sciences were identified as a particularly interesting field for future joint activities. Based on the visit of an Indian delegation (R. Madhan, Counsellor for Science & Technology at the Indian Embassy) to ZMT and on the MoU between Leibniz Association and DST a joint workshop will be held at the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT) in Bremen from August 20 to 21.

The forthcoming workshop on Marine Science and Coastal Sustainability will bring together a small group of Indian scientists with German researchers from the Leibniz Association in order to evaluate possibilities for future collaboration and to intensively discuss concrete project ideas in the areas of aquaculture and microbiology, groundwater and biogeochemistry, coastal erosion and sea water levels. ZMT already has existing links to India (e.g. via its Alumni) and the workshop is aimed at promoting innovative research and exchange of scientists.

The first day of the workshop will give all scientists the opportunity to introduce themselves, their research interests and foci as well as ideas and expectations for future collaboration.

Workshop agenda

Session 1 Coastal Zone Biogeochemistry

-Nutrient transport by submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) into coastal waters, e.g. in mud-banks in Kerala
- Eutrophication, e.g. causes of species shifts (incl. assessment of past climatic records)
- Experimental approaches to assess biogeochemical responses of tropical oceans to the changing environment
- Analysing and assessing the effects of anthropogenic nitrogen on ecosystem services in coastal aquatic systems of South India and health and livelihoods of the concerned population
- Submarine groundwater discharge as a potential resource and pollution pathway to coastal ecosystems

Session 2: Coastal planning

- Marine protected coastal areas and marine spatial planning integrating functional aspects of ecosystems and their services; common vs. exclusive use of areas; competing space use through coastal aquaculture and ecosystem conservation
- Land Sea Interactions as an emerging field of governance
- Integrated multitrophic aquaculture of island areas for balanced development of island community through mariculture and sea ranching (special focus on sea cucumbers)

- Sea level rise and coastal erosion in reef-dominated coastal regions

• Impact on Coastal livelihoods
• Community perceptions of coastal processes and sea level rise
• Vulnerability and resilience of local communities
• Connecting science to people: implications for coastal planning

- Bioeconomy, Sustainable Aquatic Production
- Translating sea level change along high-density urban coasts
- The use of drones in science

Session 3: Biodiversity/Ecosystem functioning

- Inventorying of deep sea biodiversity and delineation of marine biodiversity hotspots
- Novel methods in assessing marine biodiversity, particularly microorganisms using DNA and proteomics
- Assessing capacity of plankton and benthic communities to adapt to changing climate and reduced oxygen conditions
- Analysing and assessing the effects of anthropogenic nitrogen on ecosystem services in coastal aquatic systems of South India and health and livelihoods of the concerned population
- Deep-sea biodiversity studies in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans