Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)

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The ICZM concept was established in 1992 with the goal to improve the management of the coast, which is a landscape feature often neglected due to administrative boundaries, unresolved responsibilities of authorities and the exact definition.

In terms of the Maritime Cultural Heritage (MCH), the ICZM concept has many implications.

Administrative boundaries: The remit of regional heritage protection authorities may be limited by the coastline, while a central (and often remote) authority may be responsible for the MCH in the coastal waters. This may also have an impact on MCH data acquisition, as terrestrial areas are divided up in adminstrative units, whereas a different system applies for the coastal waters. Thus, the coastline as an administrative border may artificially divide a MCH context. If the ICZM concept is used, this articifial divide can be bridged either by a re-allocation of responsibilities or a fixed cooperation.

Changing coastlines: Due to isostatic and eustatic processes, coastlines have changed dramatically over time, so marine-influenced areas can be located further inland, while formerly terrestrial areas can be located under water. With respect to the Baltic Sea especially the post-glacial rebound has dramatically influenced the coastline, which led to the uplift of the earth crust on the Fennoscandian Shield and a depression beyond the tilt zone. Thus, in the north-eastern part of the Baltic Sea, prehistoric coastal settlements are located today further inland, while in the south-western part of the Baltic Sea, prehistoric coastal settlements are now inundated. If the ICZM concept is applied, the original geographic context would be taken into account.