Many Stakeholders, Multiple Perspectives: Long-Term Planning for a Future Coast

  • Sophie A. Day (née Nicholson-Cole)Email author
  • Tim O’Riordan
  • Jessica Bryson (née Milligan)
  • Peter Frew
  • Robert Young
Part of the Advances in Global Change Research book series (AGLO, volume 49)


Current planning for the future of coastal zones in England is occurring at a time of great change and uncertainty. Alongside the expectation of increased storminess and impending sea-level rise associated with climate change, coastal decision-making is subject to a whole host of institutional shifts and the legacy of past coastal management decisions. Changing official policy, administrative arrangements and jurisdictions, the need to create conditions for community involvement and local and national level budgetary constraints are all issues in the melting pot.

This chapter summarises recent and current decision-making practice as it applies to Norfolk, UK, and suggests how coastal management for a changing coastline may generally become more adaptive, socially fair and effectively implemented. In Norfolk, coastal change is a complex and emotive issue, the management of which has evolved significantly over the last two decades. This chapter specifically addresses the ways in which national, regional and local stakeholder interests have interacted during this tumultuous time in North Norfolk to negotiate pathways for adapting to coastal change. The case example presented in this chapter, and more broadly in this book, illustrates that there are social limits and barriers, which hinder the conditions most likely to enable progressively more adaptive coastal governance.

Many lessons have been learned from this experience and these are outlined in the context of how coastal governance in England and further afield may seek to become more adaptive. Integrated approaches to the management of future coasts are needed, encompassing robust science, genuine stakeholder commitment and inclusion, and funding arrangements (as adaptation always comes at a cost). In this regard, the deployment of the Tyndall Coastal Simulator approach can help to support this need.

Within the Tyndall Coastal Simulator, this work provided an important context for all the model development. With the visualisations (Chap.  10) and interface (Chap.  11), it also provided a conduit from the models to a true two-way stakeholder interaction and feedback. This experience showed that regular stakeholder engagement activities should always be a core part of integrated assessment exercises.


Adaptive coastal governance Coastal change Stakeholder engagement 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sophie A. Day (née Nicholson-Cole)
    • 1
    Email author
  • Tim O’Riordan
    • 2
  • Jessica Bryson (née Milligan)
    • 3
  • Peter Frew
    • 4
  • Robert Young
    • 5
  1. 1.Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, Faculty of Engineering and the EnvironmentUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK
  2. 2.School of Environmental SciencesUniversity of East AngliaNorwichUK
  3. 3.Geography and the Lived Environment Research Institute, School of GeosciencesUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  4. 4.Coastal Strategy for North Norfolk District CouncilCoastal Management ConsultantElyUK
  5. 5.Coast and Community PartnershipsNorth Norfolk District CouncilNorfolkUK

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