Background and Aims

Background & Aims

The Wadden Sea – worldwide unique…

The Wadden Sea along the Danish, Dutch and German North Sea coast is unique throughout the world. Nowhere else another tidal landscape with a comparable extent and diversity can be found.

As nursery ground of many North Sea fish species and “turntable” of bird migration between the Arctic and Africa the ecological importance of the Wadden Sea reaches far beyond the national borders.

... and internationally protected

Today, large Parts of the international Wadden Sea are protected - as nature protection areas, biosphere reserves and national parks. As only a trans-boundary approach to nature protection can take into account the ecological entity of the  Wadden Sea, the three bordering countries have been working together in the “Trilateral Cooperation on the Protection of the Wadden Sea” and coordinate their nature protection measures since 1978.

However, not very many people are aware of the international dimension and importance of the Wadden Sea. Yet, a “boundless Wadden-awareness” and the appreciation of this unique landscape are an important factor for the long-term protection of the Wadden Sea as a whole.

IWSS- Trilateral education for ONE Wadden Sea

Against this background, the Trilateral Wadden Sea Cooperation and nature conservation organizations have established the “International Wadden Sea School” (IWSS) on the occasion of the Cooperation’s 25th anniversary in October 2003.

The aim and tasks of the IWSS are to raise the awareness among children and youths of the Wadden Sea as a shared natural and cultural heritage and to create an understanding for the need to jointly protect the Wadden Sea as a whole.

To achieve this aim,

  • the IWSS supports immediate nature- and wilderness experiences through educational excursions and activities
  • the IWSS facilitates international “Wadden experiences” by providing an information and service-platform for international school trips
  • the IWSS supports the internationalisation of high-quality environmental education with networking activities and joint projects of the participating education centres