Civic monitoring report

Sent on 20/03/2023 | By WE SEA | @

What we found out

Project objectives

The project Sea MARVEL aims to raise awareness of the marine ecosystem risks and mitigate the effects of plastic pollution, marine resource tools, invasion of alien species and the effects of climate change, so as to safeguard the ecosystem and the protected sites of Natura 2000, specifically in the stretch of the Mediterranean between Sicily and Malta.

Foreseen activities

It has a duration of 36 months, in fact it was started on 11.14.2023 and the expected end is 11.30.2023, according to the latest updates. During these years, Sea MARVEL plans to engage in direct research in the Mediterranean, focusing on the presence of alien species, indicators of vulnerability and plastic waste. This is done thanks to the interventions of experts, but also of young people and local fishermen, who can become "Sentinels of the sea", applying the "Citizen Science". School awareness also plays a central role in this project.

Project origin

Sea MARVEL is part of “Programma di Cooperazione Transfrontaliera INTERREG V-A Italia Malta per il periodo 2014-2020”, approved by “Decisione della Commissione Europea C(2015) n. 7046”; the related subsidy contract, signed by the attorney of “Dipartimento regionale della Programmazione” and the represented of “Università di Catania” was approved by DDG n, 984/SV DRP of 23.12.2020.
It was born from the simple conviction of Clara Monaco and Iuri Peri, the project manager, of being able to solve the crucial problem of marine pollution thanks to the scientific collaboration with the University of Malta. So a team of experts from Catania and Maltese was immediately formed.


The beneficiaries of this project are all of us humans, as part of the great terrestrial system.


Sicily, like Malta, is truly the highest expression of wonderful Nature, today degraded. So our Mediterranean really needs projects such as Sea MARVEL, which is accompanied by the similar "Pesce diverso", to which various members of the aforementioned belong.


Although the OpenCoesione website admits that €0 of the €2104822.36 has been used, the project manager Iuri Peri points out that a part of the money has already been invested, but not recorded, since only the money paid is recorded, equivalent to 40% for UniCT and 100% for Malta. The main delays are caused by bureaucratic delays. The following data are taken from the interview carried out on 8th March 2023.


During the aforementioned interview, Iuri Peri remarked that his team has already concluded the focal research phase, now applying themselves to the direct analysis of the data collected to hypothesize solutions to the problems encountered; however, he did not go into more detail. Interviewing by email Adriana Vella, representative of the Maltese team, it emerged that they have entered into an agreement with the Ministry of Education, thus financing projects, photographic exhibitions and moments of debate in schools. Therefore it is evident that both the Catania and the Maltese sides are carrying out a very effective job and in line with the set objectives.


The project is not well publicized, at least in Sicily; maybe if it had a more widespread fame, its effects would be more evident.


Synergy, science and humanity. These are the three keywords of the project. SEA MARVEL is really proof that to solve human problems everyone needs to intervene in this sense. The Earth is not the responsibility of a few. Moreover, the project involves many women, often far from scientific commitment.


The slowness of the bureaucracy could really jeopardize the efficiency of the project: the environmental problem is really urgent. Furthermore, young people largely ignore the existence of SEA MARVEL, even if they are directly involved, thus denaturalizing the project.

Ideas and solutions

We believe that is useful, in addition to the exhaustive website, creating also a social pages, thanks to which to publicize the project and achieve even higher goals, perhaps even organizing events of public interest.

Results and Impact of the monitoring

Dissemination of results

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Territorial events organised by the teams


  • Professore ordinario di Economia e Gestione delle imprese, Università di Catania
  • Component of , Servizio di Cooperazione Territoriale Europea per il Centro EuropeDirect di Trapani
  • Component of , Servizio di Cooperazione Territoriale Europea per il Centro EuropeDirect di Trapani
  • Journalist , Press Office of UniCT

Contacts with media outlets

  • Blog or other online news outlet

Contatti con le Pubbliche Amministrazioni per discutere i risultati del Monitoraggio

  • Generic answer

Description of the case

We are really convinced that we have had a modest impact, especially in our school. We notice this both on social networks, always full of likes and comments, but also of presence; in fact, during one of our awareness-raising courses, a girl approached the project managers stating that she had reflected on topics very dear to her but from truly innovative perspectives. This really makes us believe in what we do!

Investigation method

How was the information collected?

  • Web research
  • Visit to the project's location, documented by pictures or videos
  • Interview with people responsible for the project's planning
  • Interview with people responsible for the project's implementation

First of all we interviewed Iuri Peri, the project manager of SEA MARVEL as well as associate professor of the University of Catania in the DI3A and Director of the Master in Viticulture of Oenology and Enomarket. He was also supported by Clara Monaco, marine biologist and university researcher, Alessandra Raffa, research fellow at Di3a, and Carla Tumino, researcher. We also contacted by email Adriana Vella, marine biologist and director of the Maltese team.
We plan to interview Chiara Di Bella, Ilva Parlato and Marco Sambataro, managing authorities.

Main questions

1- In your opinion, does the implementation of a cross-border cooperation project give more value to the member states and to the enhancement of scientific skills? What is your experience? (Adriana Vella, coordinator of the Maltese team)
2- The "Sea Marvel" project was born jointly with colleagues from the University of Malta; what prompted you to seek this collaboration? (Iuri Peri, project manager of Sea MARVEL)

Main answers

1- Obviously it helps to be able to be part of a well-funded research and application project and to work toward improvement of the whole central Mediterranean region which is a hotspot for biodiversity that is unfortunately declining while disturbance, pollution and anthropogenic impacts are on the rise.
2- The protection of the environment and source of fossiling and the efficient use of the resources that are included in this area.
This way we reflect together about what colleagues work on the same teams of our research group and respond also to the same objective of that all.
Prof Vella and his team were the good partners for the Sea Marvel adventure .