More effective ecosystem restoration in the EU


AMBER – Adaptive Management of Barriers in European Rivers

MERCES – Marine Ecosystem Restoration in Changing European Seas


AMBER and MERCES are the two projects awarded under Research and Innovation Action topic SC5-07-2015. The aim of the topic was to come to a more effective ecosystem restoration in the EU. They are both part of the work programme topic “Protecting the environment, sustainably managing natural resources, water, biodiversity and ecosystems”.


Facts and Figures

AMBER (project ID 689682) started in June 2016 and finished in September 2020. The project had a budget of € 6.2 million, with a maximum EC contribution of € 6 million. Coordinator of the project was Swansea University (UK), with 20 partners.


MERCES (project ID 689518) started in June 2016 and finished end of May 2020. MERCES had a total project cost and EC contribution of € 6.6 million. MERCES coordinator was the Universita Politecnica delle Marche (IT), with 30 partners.


Aims and objectives

The two projects addressed the challenge of ecosystem restoration in different ways.


The aim of the AMBER project was to deliver innovative solutions to river fragmentation in Europe by developing more efficient methods of restoring stream connectivity through adaptive barrier management. The project sought to address the complex challenge of river fragmentation through a comprehensive barrier adaptive management process, based on the integration of programme design, management, and monitoring to systematically test assumptions about barrier mitigation, adapt and learn. More information is available on the project’s Cordis website.


The MERCES project focused on the restoration of different degraded marine habitats, with the aim of:

1) assessing the potential of different technologies and approaches; 2) quantifying the returns in terms of ecosystems services and their socio-economic impacts; 3) defining the legal-policy and governance frameworks needed to optimize the effectiveness of the different restoration approaches.


Specific aims included: a) improving existing, and developing new, restoration actions of degraded marine habitats; b) increasing the adaptation of EU degraded marine habitats to global change; c) enhancing marine ecosystem resilience and services; d) conducting cost-benefit analyses for marine restoration measures; e) creating new industrial targets and opportunities.

More information is available on the project’s Cordis website.



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