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ConnECTER Special Interest Group (SIG)

ReMeMaRe has established the Connectivity in Estuarine, Coastal and Transitional Ecosystem Restoration (ConnECTER) Special Interest Group (SIG).

The SIG supports networking and collaboration between academics and research organisations working in the field of estuarine and coastal restoration (nationally and internationally), whilst connecting this community more widely to other stakeholders involved in practical implementation across the UK with support from ReMeMaRe.

The SIG will promote and facilitate scientific research that improves the understanding of habitat and ecosystem restoration and application of Nature-based Solutions (NbS) in the UK.

The SIG has adopted the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) (2021) definition of ecosystem restoration, “the process of halting and reversing degradation, resulting in improved ecosystem services and recovered biodiversity. Ecosystem restoration encompasses a wide continuum of practices, depending on local conditions and societal choice”. This encompasses both 'passive' recovery through pressure removal, as well as 'active' restoration.

Further details of the SIG can be found in the agreed Terms of Reference (ToR).


The SIG is chaired by Dr Jo Preston (University of Portsmouth) and Prof Graham Underwood (University of Essex), with administrative support provided by Roger Proudfoot and Will Manning (Environment Agency).

The SIG is comprised of Habitat Networks, representing the ReMeMaRe priority habitats and others of note. Each Network has a habitat lead, supported by a network of habitat specialists, who will help co-ordinate and collate research that will support the recovery, restoration and future conservation and management of that habitat.

Key members from across the SIG also form an Ecosystem Network. This Network will be responsible for co-ordinating and collating research, specifically relating to:

  • Ecosystem restoration at the land- and seascape scale,
  • How such activities should be implemented to maximise positive and minimise negative impacts; and
  • Potential additional benefits associated with these approaches, such as improved habitat connectivity and complementary habitat functionality.

Meeting Minutes

The agreed minutes from previous meetings can be found below:

Key Research Papers

zu Ermgassen P.S.E., Bonačić K., Boudry P., Bromley C.A., Cameron T.C., Colsoul B., Coolen J.W.P, Frankic A., Hancock B., van der Have T., Holbrook Z., Kamermans P., Laugen A.T., Nevejan N., Pogoda B., Pouvreau S., Preston J., Ranger C.J., Sanderson W.G., Sas H., Strand A. and Sutherland W.J. (2020) Forty questions of importance to the policy and practice of native oyster reef. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. 30:2038 – 2049.