Interreg North Sea Region - FRAMES

Interreg North Sea Region

FRAMES (Flood Resilient Areas by MultilayEred Safety) is an Interreg North Sea Region project that aims to strengthen the resilience of flood prone areas by reducing the effects of flooding and reducing recovery time, using spatial planning, community resilience and recovery actions. Within 13 selected target sites and together with 17 project partners in the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Germany and Denmark, multilayered water safety will be developed. The project runs from October 2016 until September 2019.

Description of the project

Interreg North Sea Region - FRAMESFRAMES addresses the shared territorial challenge that on-going climate change results in increasing sea levels and extreme rainfall patterns for areas and communities in the North Sea Region. The physical, economic and social effects of floods are likely to increase further. Traditional flood prevention measures (physical infrastructure) are expensive and may not be sustainable for the future. There will never be enough resources to protect every single citizen from flooding, but if we smartly combine resilience measures we can minimise impact. No one organisation or member state has the knowledge to develop sustainable solutions for these challenges alone. For this, we use the Multi-Layer Safety (MLS) concept as a starting point. The MLS concept is a policy strategy that integrates measures for: prevention, mitigation via spatial planning and emergency response. These layers are traditionally managed by different authorities and sectors, but through MLS, the barriers are lifted and the stakeholders jointly apply the most effective combination of solutions. The MLS principles are being acknowledged by more and more authorities and practitioners across the NSR, but have thus far not been developed in a transnational way. The FRAMES partners are experimenting with MLS related concepts and will build on this experience to realise sustainable strategies and improve the capacity of authorities and society to cope with flooding.


These are the objectives of FRAMES:

  • Improve the capacity of authorities, stakeholders and practitioners in the North Sea Region for improving climate change resilience; Building confidence, experience, coalitions and awareness will improve the capacity of authorities, stakeholders and practitioners.
  • Develop more flood resilient areas by demonstrating MLS at pilot sites around the NSR; To realize NSR areas that improve their flood resilience through spatial solutions (physical resilience), emergency response (social resilience) and deploying recovery for the better (adaptation capacity).
  • Improve the applicability of the MLS concept by developing and demonstrating (e-)tools that support the integration of resilience measures and the integration of cross- sector interest and benefits; The MLS concept is getting increasing support from authorities and communities. To increase its actual implementation we need to develop and demonstrate (e-)tools that support its applicability. The real value of the tools is proven when the relevant stakeholders contribute to the development and implementation of tools.

Role of Ghent University

Interreg North Sea Region - FRAMESGhent University works on two pilot cases in Ninove and Denderleeuw, in cooperation with the Province of East Flanders. We want to analyze how we can increase the resilience of local communities against flooding. Multilayered safety means that also citizens and companies will have to guard themselves against flooding. FRAMES wants to test how they can be involved in and contribute to dealing with flood risks.

Furthermore, Ghent University is also involved in the development of a knowledge platform. By analyzing the findings of the different pilot cases in different context, cross-national conclusions and recommendations can be formulated.



dr. Barbara Tempels
Centre for Mobility and Spatial Planning
Phone number: +32 9 331 32 55

prof. Luuk Boelens
Centre for Mobility and Spatial Planning
Phone number: +32 9 331 32 54

dr. Hannelore Mees
provincie Oost-Vlaanderen, dienst Ruimtelijke Planning
Phone number: +32 9 267 75 78

 This project has received funding from the Interreg North Sea Region programme 2014-2020 co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the Province of East-Flanders

Provincie Oost-Vlaanderen