Community-led Monitoring

Community Diver Image © COAST

Many CCN member groups are actively involved in the collection of data from their local inshore areas. Their activities and interests are varied – from feeding into Marine Protected Area (MPA) monitoring and creating local citizen science initiatives, to producing underwater films.

CCN are currently partnering in two exciting ongoing initatives to build community-led monitoring and surveying:

Inshore Participatory Monitoring

The joint Coastal Communities Network, Fauna & Flora International (FFI) and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) Inshore Participatory Monitoring initiative aims to increase community involvement in marine data collection and monitoring by addressing barriers to participation which were identified together in a 2017 participatory workshop. SNH currently has a graduate placement in post, to produce a community-led marine monitoring guide and has provided support to two groups for the purchase of underwater survey equipment. We are now planning a hands-on demo day to trial equipment and methodologies.

MSc Student Projects

In 2019, CCN were invited to take part in the annual SNH/Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland (MASTS) MSc student project system, which enables community groups to be involved in this academic process for the first time. Two community-based research projects are currently in the planning stage, with fieldwork to take place in spring 2019. SNH will provide co-funding to cover student costs and input technical project support, with community reps co-supervising the projects. Project results are due by Autumn 2019.