The economy of the sea

Since 2012, Pole Mer Bretagne Atlantique has benefited from the BRONZE label awarded by the European Commission for cluster excellence. This label reflects the cluster’s commitment to excellent management practice and to publicly asserting its European ambitions.  

The Pôle Mer supports SMEs in exporting their products and know-how. Every effort is made to take full advantage of its international cooperative activities and to enhance its capacity for European-level initiatives for the benefit of its members. The cluster thus encourages development of transnational collaborative projects. France possesses the world’s second largest Economic Exclusion Zone, extending to 11 million km2, and therefore affords maritime sector stakeholders a range of outstanding assets.

Helping lead the way for the European maritime community

The cluster conducts all its European activities for the benefit of its members who view it as an opportunity to collaborate with other European clusters on common themes. It also provides the chance to respond jointly to calls for projects issued by Europe as part of the Horizon 2020 programme in particular.

Pôle Mer is consolidating its role as a leader in the European maritime community: identifying partners, participating in European programmes, interclustering, lobbying European bodies, etc.

Cluster participation/expertise


JPI Oceans - Member of the national Mirror Group France

The Joint Programming Initiative Healthy and Productive Seas and Oceans (JPI Oceans) is a coordinating and integrating platform, open to all EU Member States and Associated Countries dedicated to developing sustainable marine and maritime activities.

The role of JPI Oceans is to ensure more effective use of national research budgets which represent 88% of research funding within Europe. One of its objectives is to develop joint research programmes which countries can choose to take part in, opting for different levels and different forms of involvement. 

Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique participates in the Mirror Group France.

Contact:Stéphane Alain Riou - and Philippe Monbet -


COLUMBUS Project – Member of the External Advisory Board

Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique was appointed as an expert to the committee overseeing the European COLUMBUS Project.

This project brings together 26 scientific organisations and clusters, the majority of them spread around the Baltic Sea, North Sea and Atlantic. The aims are to prioritise upcoming challenges in the maritime sector and associated research needs, and to transfer scientific and technical knowledge to businesses and society.

The project’s ambition is to make European citizens aware of the impact of marine and maritime research on their daily lives in the future.

Contact:Stéphane-Alain Riou -


H2020 – Member of the Advisory Group for Societal Challenge 2: Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture, Marine and Maritime Research and the Bioeconomy

As member of the Advisory Group for Societal Challenge 2 - Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture, Marine and Maritime Research and the Bioeconomy, Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique plays a part in drawing up strategic plans for future Horizon 2020 calls for proposals. Among other things, this involvement enables the priorities of cluster members contained in the strategic road map to be moved up the European agenda.

Contact:Stéphane-Alain Riou -




Interclustering activities and participation in European projects strengthen the expertise of the Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique in identifying innovation needs and positioning its members in emerging markets: MRE, coastal and estuarine water management, satellite services, etc.

Projects in progress


  • Blue BRIDGE

Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique is a partner in the BlueBRIDGE project funded as part of Horizon 2020 and steered by the Italian national research council, the CNR (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche).

The project aims to develop collaborative tools featuring specific functionalities (models, data integration, big data management, etc.) in the form of virtual research environments (VREs) for use in the fishing, aquaculture and environment sectors.

The cluster’s role is to promote tools within its network and, more broadly, among all stakeholders targeted and interested in the functionalities offered by BlueBRIDGE. It is also responsible for disseminating the results and organising workshops and training.

Contact: Philippe Monbet - and Anaïs Turpault –  


Completed projects  


European Marine Science Applications Consortium

Ensuring appropriate research efforts and development of economic markets associated with managing coastal and estuarine waters  

Consortium: Marine South East, Portsmouth City Council, University of Southampton, Pole Mer Mediterrannée, Université de Bretagne Occidentale, Bretagne Développement Innovation, University of Gothenburg, Holdingbolaget vid Göteborgs Universitet, Västra Götalandsregionen

Programme: FP7 - Region of Knowledge



Marine Energy in Far Peripheral and Island Communities  

Consortium: Cornwall Council, Conseil Général du Finistère, Parc Naturel Marin d'Iroise, Technopôle Brest Iroise, Ifremer, Bretagne Développement Innovation, University of Exeter, University of Plymouth, Cornwall Marine Network

Programme: INTERREG IVa France - Channel - England



Towards a Joint European Research Infrastructure Network for Coastal Observatories 

Consortium: 27 European partners including Ifremer, NIVA, NIOZ, CEFAS, HMRC, Tecnalia

Programme: FP7 - Integrating Activities (IA)


  • DORIS_Net

Regional Contact Offices (RCOs) for the Downstream Observatory Organised by Regions Active in Space _ Network 

Consortium: Ceon Gmbh, University Of Leicester, Cerema, Capital High Tech, Secretaria Regional Da Ciência, Tecnologia E Equipamentos, Consiglio Nazionale Delle Ricerche, Tecnologie Per Le Osservazioni Della Terra Ed I Rischi Naturali, Research In Brussels Asbl, Fundacion Adeuropa, Asociacion Madrid Plataforma Aeronautica Y Del Espacio, Mpae, Forum Luft- Und Raumfahrt Baden-Württemberg E.V., Guyane Technopôle

Programme: FP7 - SPACE - Fostering downstream activities and links with regions (SPA)


  • Channel MOR

Facilitating integration of SMEs in emerging marine energy markets  

Consortium: Bretagne Développement Innovation, Technopôle Brest Iroise, Université du Havre, Chambre de Commerce et d’Industrie de Dieppe, Région Haute Normandie, Maison de l’Emploi et de la Formation Professionnelle du Pays de Brest, Technopôle Cherbourg Normandie, Cornwall Marine Network, Southampton City Council, University of Chichester, University of Portsmouth

Programme: INTERREG IVa France - Channel - England