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ThinkNature: Online platform promotes nature itself in confronting big global challenges

The EU-funded project “ThinkNature” created a multi-stakeholder communication platform to support the understanding and promotion of Nature-based solutions (NBS) at local, regional, EU and international levels. The platform is an integrated web-based solution that stimulates dialogue and interaction on NBS through discussion forums and debates. The project is led by the Technical University of Crete and executed by a consortium of 17 partners originating from 8 countries across Europe.

NBS  are defined by the EU as solutions that are ‘˜inspired and supported by nature, which are cost-effective, simultaneously provide environmental, social and economic benefits and help build resilience. Such solutions bring more, and more diverse, nature and natural features and processes into cities, landscapes and seascapes, through locally adapted, resource-efficient and systemic interventions’  (source:  The EU Research and Innovation policy agenda on Nature-Based Solutions).

Within this context, the goals of ThinkNature are the following:

  • A continuous dialogue and interaction on nature based solutions
  • A broad multi-stakeholder platform
  • To steer dialogue through forums and debates
  • To identify, communicate and promote successful nature based solutions
  • To identify potential regulatory, economic and technical barriers
  • To foster collaboration at multiple levels (local, regional, national and EU)
  • To develop synergy with other projects on nature based solutions funded by the EU

A list of 126 international partners and organisations has been compiled to foster NBS dialogue and create market synergies for Europe. Over 730 registered users on the platform’ s private area can share documents, tasks and events. They can also participate in online brainstorming forums and discussions to build up their knowledge on NBS.

Available to all, the Knowledge Hub includes NBS project sites and platforms, best practice NBS case studies worldwide and a repository for online resources on NBS state-of-the-art activity.  The platform contains a portfolio of 112 case studies with a methodology to evaluate the degree of documentation completeness. A handbook gathers and promotes state-of-the-art knowledge on NBS and boosts public awareness. It includes a comprehensive guide for all relevant actors. Several short video interviews with a broad range of experts offer various perspectives on and insights into the present and future of NBS. Four webinars attracted 366 people to raise awareness about and understanding of the NBS concept, and to support and promote knowledge on multiple aspects of NBS design and implementation. Forty participants from nineteen countries attended a week-long, hands-on summer school focused on NBS.   A game app introduces different NBS and how each can contribute to a city’ s support and protection. Players use nature to confront issues involving an imaginary city’ s unsustainable growth.

The platform aims to influence policy ideas and decisions concerning NBS and provide new ideas on how to deal with regional problems.

You can find the article on CORDIS website here.

You can find the project website here.