Two Special Features on integrated coastal zone management, especially along the Mediterranean Sea, result from a MEDCOAST conference held in Hammamet (Tunisia), 20–25 October 2001. In this first Special Feature some papers are presented on ecological and biological research related to integrated coastal zone management. All over Europe coastal environments are threatened by human activities such as urbanization, industrial development, fisheries, aquaculture, recreation and tourism. Research has to be developed that can be applied to similar case studies in different countries. Methods of monitoring are necessary and baseline data have to be available in order to judge the significance of changes in the abiotic and biotic environment. Examples of studies included in this Special Feature are mainly from southern banks of the Mediterranean Sea but there is also an example from Estonia and one from the Canary Islands.
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Vol. 8 • No. 2