Practice versus policy-led coastal defence management

MC O'Connor, G Lymbery, Andrew Cooper, J Gault, John McKenna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Throughout northwest European coastal countries risks associated with coastal erosion are significant but spatially and temporally variable. The level of this risk is largely dependent on the extent of development within the coastal zones and a variety of approaches have been adopted for its management. The decision-making process for responding to erosion risk depends to a large extent on national policy. Coastal protection policy in northwest European countries varies in terms of the level of centralisation and formality of arrangements. In this paper the practical outworking of the informal practice-based system of Ireland, where there is no national policy framework, is compared with the policy-led system of England and Wales where formal national guidelines exist. Using case studies, the strengths and weaknesses of both the bottom-up and top-down approaches are assessed. The findings reveal strengths and weaknesses in both existing types of approach. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)923-929
JournalMarine Policy
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Nov 2009


  • Ireland
  • England
  • Wales
  • Coastal protection policy
  • Coastal management
  • Shoreline management plans


Dive into the research topics of 'Practice versus policy-led coastal defence management'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this