Research Output
Blue economy and the total environment: Mapping the interface
  The term ‘Blue Economy (BE)’ is increasingly popular in modern environmental research. The concept seeks to explore ocean-based development opportunities with environmental stewardship and protection. Yet different scholars and actors adopt this term often in conflicting ways without attempting to explore the relevance and the link between the blue economy and the broader environment viz., total environment. The potential opportunities to resolve the conflicts require a better understanding of the impacts and/or interactions of the BE on the total environment. This paper aims to map the interface between the two for a better understanding of the total environment and implications for the BE. Using a systematic literature review, this study finds that the field of the blue economy in association with the total environment is very new and emerging in the literature, and the link between the BE and the total environment is increasingly being invoked, yet clarity on the link or interactions remain vague. By analysing the co-occurrence of selected keywords and networks, we present six clusters (three for general relationship, and the other three for specific dimensions of total environment). In a general relationship between the BE and the total environment, clusters of environmental sustainability, marine resource, and economic development are identified to link directly to the BE. In specific dimensions of the total environment, clusters of growth and sustainable development, spatial planning and environmental management, and environmental sustainability and the BE are presented. The analysis outcomes show that specific areas from the total environment (growth, spatial planning, environmental management, and environmental sustainability) are directly linked to the BE where a call for a wider range of studies in the future is identified.

  • Type:


  • Date:

    28 July 2021

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  • Publisher

    Elsevier BV

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  • ISSN:


  • Funders:

    Historic Funder (pre-Worktribe)


Lee, K., Noh, J., Lee, J., & Khim, J. S. (2021). Blue economy and the total environment: Mapping the interface. Environment International, 157, Article 106796.



Blue economy, Ocean economy, Marine policy, Coastal management, Total environment, Interdisciplinarity

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