Dutch-German research call ‘Understanding complex pressures on the Wadden Sea and options for action’ announced

In early April 2023, the Dutch Research Council (NWO) together with the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is going to publish the Dutch-German call ‘Understanding complex pressures on the Wadden Sea and options for action’.

The joint research call aims to protect and preserve the Wadden Sea's Outstanding Universal Value and integrity. It focuses on interdisciplinary research that creates knowledge with and for stakeholders and emphasises the importance of societal impact. The call commits to various frameworks, including the Trilateral Research Priorities and the national science agendas, to ensure meaningful change.

The call invites consortia consisting of researchers and stakeholders to jointly develop project proposals addressing the cumulative effects of climate change, rapid change in biodiversity, pollution, and local human activities on the Wadden Sea ecosystem. A maximum of €16 million is available for the research programme, with approximately €4.75 million available for the Dutch part of the projects and up to €11 million for the German part. The project proposal must have a time span of maximum four years. The German-Dutch consortia should consist of interdisciplinary partnerships, answering both fundamental and practice and applied research questions, and have at least one Dutch and one German cooperation partner. Each consortium is to involve a Danish cooperation partner in the research in order to strengthen the trilateral character of Wadden Sea research.

The research call was developed with the support of the Trilateral Programming Committee Wadden Sea Research (TPC-WSR) and the Common Wadden Sea Secretariat (CWSS). TPC-WSR consists of representatives from science and policy of the three states and was chaired by Dr Bernd Scherer. It was installed by the Wadden Sea Board (WSB) to serve as a focal point to foster scientific cooperation and applied research on the Wadden Sea World Heritage, and for discussions on how to implement, further develop and link a joint research programme to other national and international initiatives of relevance, taking into account the Trilateral Research Agenda (TRA).