A 3-day workshop was held in Australia to discuss problems and issues facing coastal zones, including degradation of coastal ecosystems and the impacts of climate change such as sea level rise and changed weather patterns, and to formulate a collaborative research strategy to improve the coastal zone management (CZM) system to tackle these problems. The workshop, which brought together experts from University of New South Wales (UNSW) and Ocean University of China (OUC), highlighted the similarities in topics important to Australia and China. This workshop focused on science, policy, and the legal framework required to manage sustainable development of these coastal zones.
Many parallels exist between the difficult issues facing CZM in both countries. Significant research into changes in coastal areas and their causes has been undertaken, but this research effort has not been fully reflected in coastal zone planning and management activities. Workshop participants reviewed current progress in understanding scientific, engineering, and socioeconomic processes in the coastal zones, brainstormed challenges in developing a multidisciplinary research framework capable of integrating science into coastal zone management, and identified a cross-institutional approach to addressing these issues.