The Operational Directorate Natural Environment (OD Nature) has been established in 2013 under the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS). It has incorporated the scientific research of MUMM – Management Unit of the North Sea Mathematical Models, which operates as a department of RBINS since 1997.
MUMM comprises a team of around sixty people motivated by the need to improve knowledge of the North Sea and provide scientific marine services for those concerned. MUMM adopts a ‘triple M’ strategy: Modelling, Monitoring and Management:
- Modelling: studying the ecosystems of the North Sea using mathematical modelling techniques, with a view to understanding how they function and to providing certain forecasting capabilities.
- Monitoring: collecting marine information required to validate the models and make them operational, along with the various techniques used to assess the condition of the marine environment.
- Management: representing Belgium in a number of inter-governmental conventions dealing with the protection of the marine environment, including the preparation of Belgian positions to be upheld and the implementation of decisions taken, under the authority of the Minister responsible for marine environmental policy.
RBINS is a founding member of EuroGOOS AISBL.