I work at the University of Salento (Italy) and I’m interested on patterns of variations in the distribution of marine biodiversity in space and time. The quantification of the effects of marine protected areas and the assessment of how human impacts can change the structure and functioning of marine biodiversity are also part of my research. I have collaborative projects to understand the applicability of surrogates of species-level information to detect changes in marine systems.
Here, I described the project CoConet recently funded by the EU with the request of developing MPAs networks while implementing the production of clean energy through offshore wind farms in the Mediterranean and the Black Seas. Using a combination of different approaches, Coconet will identify networks of MPAs, shifting from a local to a regional perspective for marine conservation, based on effective exchanges (biological and hydrological) between protected areas. The project will also explore where OWF might be established, while avoiding sensitive habitats. Socioeconomic studies employing ecosystem services valuation methods to develop sustainable approaches for both MPA and OWF development will provide guidelines to design, manage and monitor networks of MPAs and OWF.