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Here are some key terms used throughout this research for the novice reader.​


An actor refers to any entity that can be described as the source of a given action. While this conventional use of the notion of an actor is still widely used in everyday language, scholars such as Bruno Latour (2007) have actively sought to complicate this model of the actor, suggesting the term “actant” instead, which in his view, include “any entity that does things” (Jackson, 2015, p.31), meaning that they can both be human and nonhuman. Latour’s mode of actor-network-theory emphasises that any process of action will always be enabled by networks of actors that may be enabling (e.g. a door handle making possible the opening of a door) or obstructing each other (e.g. a speedbump restricting cars from speeding).


Conventionally speaking, affect as a verb – to affect – is used to refer to the act of producing an effect (usually emotions) in someone (Merriam-Webster, n.d.). When used as a noun, affects may refer to “a set of observable manifestations of an experienced emotion” (Merriam-Webster n.d.). Generally speaking, there are two primary uses of the term that can be identified within philosophy. On the one hand, the definition of affect signifies a body’s capacity to affect and be affected. It is usually pre-personal and pre-cognitive (Massumi, 1995), meaning that we do not experience affect; rather, affect is what comes before our conscious experience of emotions. On the other hand, some do not insist that affect qualitatively differs from personalised emotion (Wetherell, 2013).



The concept of affordance was first coined by psychologist James Gibson (1979), who developed the concept in The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. In this work, Gibson defined the concept as follows: “The affordances of the environment are what it offers the animal, what it provides or furnishes, either for good or ill. The verb to afford is found in the dictionary; the noun affordance is not. I have made it up. I mean by it something that refers to both the environment and the animal in a way that no existing term does. It implies the complementarity of the animal and the environment” (Gibson 1979, p.127). As a psychological theory about perception, Gibson’s concept of affordance was developed to arrive at a fuller understanding of the interactions that take place between a subject and its environment. In this context, Gibson’s concept emphasises the significance of the various potential trajectories of actions that any given environment might present to the perceiving subject, whether human or nonhuman.


The notion of agency is commonly used to denote “the capacity, condition, or state of acting or of exerting power” (Merriam-Webster, n.d.). This capacity may take on very concrete meanings (e.g. if a person is able to move freely around a given space, the person can be said to have some degree of agency) as well as more abstract meanings (e.g. if citizens are able to influence the planning decisions of the city they live in, they can also be said to have some degree of agency). Accordingly, if someone can do neither of these things, they can be said to lack agency. While these two uses of agency emphasise the capacities of human individuals, recent developments within the fields of posthumanism and new materialist philosophy have sought to actively complicate this understanding of agency. Notably, Jane Bennett (2010) has called attention to the fact that nonhuman entities (whether it be an algae species or a rock reef) also embody some form of agency (as seen in the capacity of seaweed to sequester carbon dioxide). Importantly, this theorization of the nonhuman agency should not be construed as synonymous with the view that nonhuman entities (such as seaweed) enact their agency with the same kind of intentionality that underwrites the examples with humans offered above, see affordance). Rather, what is at stake in much of the recent writing about the nonhuman agency is a redefinition of what we might normally mean by this term.



Ecologist Eugene Stoermer first coined Anthropocene in the early 1980s and again by chemist Paul Crutzen in 2000 (Crutzen and Stoermer, 2000). The Anthropocene is the new concept of geological time that proposes humanity as the main geological force and agent. It argues that human activity (namely, extraction of resources and burning of fossil fuels) is the main reason behind the fundamental transformation of the biosphere (Moore, 2016). There are several propositions about when the Anthropocene period began (i.e., the onset of the industrial revolution). However, in 2016, the Anthropocene Working Group agreed that the Anthropocene began in the year 1950 when the exponential increase in human activity (population growth, resource consumption, etc.)  took off, called “The Great Acceleration”, which started to affect the entire planet (National Geographic Society, 2019).



According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, anthropocentrism is a “philosophical viewpoint arguing that human beings are the central or most significant entities in the world. This is a basic belief embedded in many Western religions and philosophies. Anthropocentrism regards humans as separate from and superior to nature and holds that human life has intrinsic value while other entities (including animals, plants, mineral resources, and so on) are resources that may justifiably be exploited for the benefit of humankind” (Boslaugh, 2016).


Algal/Algae bloom

An algal bloom or algae bloom is a rapid acceleration in the population of algae in marine or freshwater systems. The term algae include many different types, both microscopic unicellular organisms like cyanobacteria and macroscopic multicellular organisms like seaweed. Algal bloom commonly refers to the rapid growth of microscopic algae, not macroscopic algae. An example of a macroscopic algal bloom is a kelp forest (Barsanti and Gualtieri, 2014). See also “eutrophication”.


Bathymetry is the study of the underwater depth of ocean floors, lake floors, or river floors. Bathymetry is the underwater equivalent of topography (NOAA, 2021).

Coastal ecosystem

“A coastal ecosystem includes estuaries, coastal waters, and lands located at the lower end of drainage basins, where the stream and river systems meet the sea and are mixed by tides. The coastal ecosystem includes saline, brackish (mixed saline and fresh), and fresh waters, as well as coastlines and the adjacent lands… Shorelands, dunes, offshore islands, barrier islands, headlands, lagoons, and freshwater wetlands within estuarine drainages are included in the definition of the coastal ecosystem since these interrelated features are crucial to coastal wildlife and their habitats. A variety of animals and plants complete the ecological system” (Convertino et al., 2013).


Coastal Wetland

Coastal wetlands are in the coastal (transition) zone between land and sea, where it is regularly inundated in fresh, brackish, or saline water all or part of the year that contains a variety of vegetation and animals that are uniquely adapted to those conditions (Hatvany, 2009).


Dredging or clapping (klapning in Danish)

Dredging is the act of excavating to clear things like mud, weed, beds, and soils from a sea or a riverbed. Clapping restructures the seabed morphology by depositing the dug-up materials elsewhere, especially into the sea (i.e. Danish coastal areas). It is a necessary practice for creating and maintaining land-reclaimed ports (Plesner and Flindt, 2022).

Ecological connectivity

Life on land and sea are closely connected by a network of estuaries and coastal ecosystems, which are strongly dependent on each other. Marine life forms move back and forth and exchange energy and materials that make up the ecological connection of this boundary zone between land and sea (Belletti et al. 2020). The ecological connectivity among streams and coastal waters, as well as among coastal habitats such as continuous zones of salt marshes, seaweeds, and seagrasses, is critical for species to feed, reproduce, distribute over large spatial scales and assure recruitment of next populations (Bishop et al. 2017).


Ecological infrastructure

According to Kate Orff (2016), “ecological infrastructure refers to naturally functioning ecosystems that deliver valuable services to people. Within urban environments, this type of system can be amplified to help create resilient cities” (Orff, 2016, p.220).


Ecosystem services

According to Encyclopedia Britannica: “Ecosystem services, outputs, conditions, or processes of natural systems that directly or indirectly benefit humans or enhance social welfare. Ecosystem services can benefit people in many ways, either directly or as inputs into the production of other goods and services” (Johnston, 2018).


Eelgrass (seagrass)

Although eelgrass is not seaweed, it is commonly mistaken for seaweed in Denmark and is inaccurately categorised. Eelgrass (ålegræs in Danish) is a species of seagrass (havgræs in Danish) are considered a plant with roots, stems and leaves, while seaweed is multi-cellular algae (Mouritsen, 2019; Høgslund and Holmer, 2022).



Eutrophication is a process of pollution that occurs when a water body has excess nutrients in the water from runoffs from fertilisers, pesticides and wastes from animals and humans. As a consequence, it becomes overgrown with algae and other aquatic plants that decompose and rob the water of oxygen, killing marine animals (European Environmental Agency, n.d.). See “algal bloom”.


Fjordbyen in Danish translates to “The Fjord City,” which indicates the waterfront and the harbourfront district in the city of Vejle, Denmark, which includes the Lystbådehavn (Marina) area on the waterfront.



Geovisualisation (short for geographic visualisation, also known as cartographic visualisation) refers to a set of tools and techniques supporting geospatial data analysis through interactive visualisation. “Geovisualisation provides an opportunity for the creator or user of the visual (i.e. map) to explore data and reveal previously hidden patterns, unknowns, and marginalized perspectives. Geovisualisatopm can therefore provide unique perspectives while opening up new possibilities to manipulate and interpret the visual. By extension, GIS and geo visualisation make it possible to ‘see’ the spatial dimensions of complex urban social and ecological relations in ways conventional mapping cannot” (Jung and Anderson, 2017).



“A geographic information system (GIS) is a system that creates, manages, analyses, and maps all types of data. GIS connects data to a map, integrating location data (where things are) with all types of descriptive information (what things are like there). This provides a foundation for mapping and analysis that is used in science, industry and academia. GIS helps users understand patterns, relationships, and geographic context” (Esri, 2022).



Kelp (forest)

“Kelp ecosystems (also known as kelp forests) span from temperate to polar regions on rocky substrates worldwide and have been estimated to cover a quarter of the global coastline. Dense populations of kelps (large canopy-forming brown macroalgae) are the engineers of structurally complex and highly productive submerged ecosystems in the shallow areas of continental shelves (< 50 m depth), supporting high marine biodiversity, from invertebrates to fish and marine mammals” (Williamson and Guinder, 2021). The common names for the most recognised kelp species (brown macroalgae in the Laminariaceae family) in Denmark is called “sukkertang”, “palmetang”, and “fingertang” (Lundsteen and Nielsen, 2019a).


Kumu is a powerful data visualisation platform that helps you organize complex information into interactive relationship maps. The main use cases for Kumu are stakeholder mapping, systems mapping, social network mapping, community asset mapping and concept mapping (Kumu INC, 2011; Sage Ocean, 2022).


Land reclamation (landvinding in Danish)

“Land reclamation is the process of creating new land from the sea. The simplest method of land reclamation involves simply filling the area with large amounts of heavy rock and/or cement, then filling it with clay and soil until the desired height is reached. Draining of submerged wetlands is often used to reclaim land for agricultural use” (Stauber, Chariton and Apte, 2016). See “ocean sprawl”.


Late Capitalism

Late capitalism, or late-stage capitalism, was first popularized by the Marxist scholar Werner Sombart as a way to capture the economic boom that occurred from WWII to the 1970s. Later uses of the have resisted this periodisation with the emergence of “postmodernism” from the 1990s and onwards (Jameson, 1990). According to Fredric Jameson’s Postmodernism, or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (1990), this link between economy and culture is, made tangible by the fact the fully globalised post-industrial economy that we find ourselves in today itself holds the same contradictions and ironies that we find in postmodern art (or architecture). In this respect, the term late capitalism is used as a way to call attention to the contradictions, perceived absurdities, climate crises, injustices, inequality, and exploitation created by modern business development that defines the contemporary moment.


Littoral zone

In coastal environments, the littoral zone extends from the high-water mark, which is rarely inundated, to shoreline areas that are permanently submerged. It is “a marine ecological realm that experiences the effects of tidal and longshore currents and breaking waves… The zone is characterised by abundant dissolved oxygen, sunlight, nutrients, generally high wave energies and water motion, and, in the intertidal subzone, alternating submergence and exposure… Consequently, the littoral fauna taken as a whole involves an enormous number of species and every major phylum, although the number of individuals may vary widely with the locality” (Britannica and Editors of Encyclopaedia, 2019).

Micro and Macroalgae (seaweed, tang in Danish)

“Algae are organisms that perform photosynthesis; that is, they absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen… and live in water or in humid places. Algae have great variability and are divided into microalgae, small in size and only visible through a microscope, and macroalgae, which are larger in size… and have a greater diversity in the oceans” (Pereira, 2021). “Macroalgae (“seaweeds”) belong to either one of three groups of eukaryotic algae: the Rhodophyta (red algae), Chlorophyta (green algae), and Phaeophyceae (brown algae) or to the prokaryotic colony-forming Cyanobacteria/Cyanophyta (blue-green algae)” (Littler and Littler, 2011). 

Marine Protected Area

“Marine protected areas (MPAs) are geographically distinct zones for which protection objectives are set. They constitute a globally connected system for safeguarding biodiversity and maintaining marine ecosystem health and the supply of ecosystem services. Marine reserves form a subset of MPAs in which impacts from human activities such as resource extraction and fisheries are not permitted. Networks of MPAs or marine reserves operate together at various scales and cover a range of protection levels, which work towards objectives that individual MPAs cannot achieve” (European Environment Agency, 2018).



The term more-than-human is often used to deliberately avoid the dualistic connotations tied to the terms “human” and “nonhuman”. The term was first coined by the environmental philosopher David  Abram (1997), who coined the phrase “the more-than-human world” in The Spell of the Sensuous as a means of referring to what is commonly described as “nature”. Since then, several thinkers have adopted the term in an effort to describe the varying degrees of subjectivity that may be associated with beings and environments that are not exclusively human (see, for instance, (Braidotti, 2006; Haraway, 2016; Jaque et al., 2020). In this project, the term will be used interchangeably with “nonhuman” to refer to the marine world, particularly seaweed, as the main representative marine species.


Multispecies coexistence

Multispecies coexistence, multispecies future, multispecies cohabitation, and multispecies response‐ability are some of the many terms that deal with the need for co‐existing with other species in a more equitable and mutually beneficial manner in the age of the Anthropocene. There are many scholars and proponents of this theory; one of the prominent scholars who made this term well known is Donna Haraway (Haraway, 2007; 2016).


The term is used to refer to a network of protected nature areas in the EU. The areas need to maintain and protect rare and endangered animal and plant species that are characteristic of the EU countries (European Commission, 2021a; Miljøstyrelsen, 2022e).


Nature-based solutions

The official EU definition of nature-based solutions “are inspired and supported by nature, which is 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. Hence, nature-based solutions must benefit biodiversity and support the delivery of a range of ecosystem services” (European Commission, 2021b).


A point in a network or diagram at which lines or pathways intersect or branch. It is referred to in this research on the Kumu maps, where the nodes host various information and can be connected to other nodes.



Ocean literacy

Ocean literacy is an understanding of society’s impact on the ocean and vice versa. For instance, an ocean-literate person understands fundamental concepts about the way the ocean functions and thus is capable of engaging in discussion about the ocean in an informed manner that could also lead to decision-making about the way the ocean and its resources should be handled (Kelly et al., 2022).


Ocean Sprawl

Ocean sprawl is the act of expanding human activity out into the ocean near the coastal areas by reclaiming land from the sea for human use by dredging and draining the water to make space for industrial, commercial, residential and recreational activity. Duarte et al. (2012) are the first to coin the term (Pilkey and Young, 2011; Firth et al., 2016). See “land reclamation”.


QGIS is a free open-source cross-platform that functions as geographic information system software that allows users to edit, analyse and compose spatial information. Additionally,  exporting graphical maps for viewing and printing (QGIS, 2022).

Rights of Nature

According to IPBES, “Rights of Nature is a legal instrument that enables nature, wholly or partly, i.e. ecosystems or species, to have inherent rights and legally should have the same protection as people and corporations; that ecosystems and species have legal rights to exist, thrive and regenerate.  It enables the defence of the environment in court – not only for the benefit of people but for the sake of nature itself” (IPBES, 2018).


Salt Marsh

A salt marsh is a coastal ecosystem in the upper coastal intertidal zone between land and open saltwater or brackish water that is regularly flooded by the tides. It is covered with dense salt‐tolerant grass-like plants that traps and bind sediments. Since soil is consistently wet from flooding, marshes are extremely nutrient-rich and can support a wide variety of plants and animal life while also providing coastal protection (Adam, 1993).


Salt Meadows or Wet Meadows (eng in Danish)

“A wet meadow is a type of wetland with soils that are saturated for part or all of the growing season. Unlike a marsh or swamp, a wet meadow does not have standing water present except for brief to moderate periods during the growing season. Instead, the ground in a wet meadow fluctuates between brief periods of inundation and longer periods of saturation... Wet meadows, therefore, do not usually support aquatic life, such as fish. They typically have a high diversity of plant species and may attract large numbers of birds, small mammals, and insects” (Los Huertos, 2020).



“[S]patially heterogeneous and dynamic [marine] spaces that can be delineated at a wide range of scales in time and space (Pittman, 2017, p.6).



Terrestrial bias

Terrestrial bias is a situated perspective that responds to the fact that humans live on land and thus is bound by gravity and experience daily life as such (i.e., immersion in the air rather than water). This parameter restricts human thinking and experiences to the ones on land, thus lending to biased ways of thinking, perceiving and decision-making to prefer the terrestrial realm as the norm. This can be problematic when dealing with the watery realm of the sea with different parameters and conditions that require human stakeholders to depart from the anthropocentric and terrestrial way of doing things (Jue, 2020).



Tilling is the act of preparing the soil for agricultural purposes via machinery to enact digging, stirring, and overturning. Deep tilling was possible due to the invention of powerful machines, which were able to reach deep depths into the geological layer to mix clay with the topsoil, which resulted in contributing to the suspended particles of water bodies as rain washed away these “lighter” soil such as clay (SSSA, 2008; Organo Quintana, 2020).



Topobathy integrates topography (land elevation) and bathymetry (water depths) (ARCGIS, 2022).


Urban Commons

The term urban commons represents shared material and immaterial resources (i.e. land) that belong to or impact the whole community in an urban environment (Hardt and Negri, 2009). It is founded on the guiding principle of equity that fundamentally reconceptualises how we view spaces and entities as something that affects all.



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