KEN – Involving stakeholders in the implementation of ecological networks in Europe

The project examined the ways to stimulate practical partnerships and consensus-building among and between the stakeholders involved in the practical implementation of ecological networks.

During the implementation, the project:

Through desk studies, interviews, analysis of results, the project delivered:

SPEN “Interaction between policy concerning spatial planning and ecological networks in Europe”

Ecosystems in Europe are considerably fragmented.  Ecological research indicates that building up a coherent ecological network of core areas, corridors, buffer zones and nature development areas is beneficial to the protection of species and habitats. Spatial planning is a decisive sector in the planning of land use in space. Various social interests play a role, such as the need for housing, mobility, production areas, open spaces and nature. Various actors promote these interests and spatial planning policy plays an integrating role with respect to the spatial placement of the various needs of modern society.

  1. mapping the level of interaction between policy on spatial planning and ecological networks in Europe;
  2. contributing to enlarging the involvement of spatial planning in the further development of ecological networks in Europe.

The research focused on answering the following questions:

  1. to what extent are policy regarding spatial planning and policy regarding ecological networks based on the same conceptual and policy assumptions at European and at national levels?
  2. What practical experiences are there in Europe at international and national level with regard to cooperation between the nature conservation sector and the sector of spatial planning with regard to designing and developing ecological networks?
  3. To what extent is the ‘ecological network approach’ known to actors who are involved in developing and implementing national and international policy with regard to spatial planning, and to what extent is this approach seen as relevant and useful for their work?
  4. What are the perspectives for enlarging the active involvement of the spatial planning sector in the development of ecological networks in Europe? To what extent can one build on existing processes, instruments and networks?

The project resulted in two introductory chapters on the integration of ecological networks at European level, five country studies on the integration of spatial planning and ecological networks, an international workshop on planning and implementation of ecological networks in Europe and a final summary report with policy recommendations.



Project partners


Case studies

Discussion forum




Contact us