SimCoast is a fuzzy logic rule-based expert system designed to enable researchers, managers and decision-makers to create and evaluate different policy scenarios for coastal zone management. It is interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral. It aims to combine traditional and advanced specialist knowledge about coastal zones with a set of reasoning and analytical tools. Experts involved include engineers, natural and social scientists, lawmakers, administrators, community and national leaders. Via workshops and consensus discussions, sensitive issues such as transboundary pollution and cross-sectoral socioeconomic effects can be translated into rules for policy formulation and decision-making.

The conceptual basis of SimCoast is a two-dimensional multi-zoned map onto which key features such as ports, legal regimes and different habitats and activities such as shipping, tourism, aquaculture are mapped. Activities are often associated with different zones and processes to which they are linked (e.g. land tenure, erosion).

What Is It?

Data collection tool

  • Geophysical data collection tool (e.g. oceanographic, climate, or habitat data)
  • Biological data collection tool (e.g. species or ecological community data)
  • Socioeconomic data collection tool (e.g. economic, human use of resources, or coastal demographic data)

Data processing and management tool

Stakeholder engagement and outreach tool (for participatory goal and priority setting and stakeholder education)

Conceptual modeling tool

Modeling and analysis tool

  • Tools to develop model
  • Geographic Information System (GIS)
  • Watershed Model
  • Estuarine and marine ecosystem model
  • Oceanographic and dispersal model
  • Habitat suitability and species distribution model
  • Socioeconomic model
  • Other modeling and analysis tool

Visualization tool (for data and scenarios)

Decision support tool

  • Conservation and restoration site selection tool
  • Coastal zone management tool
  • Fisheries management tool
  • Hazard assessment and resiliency planning tool
  • Coastal and watershed land use planning tool

Project management tool (for budgeting, scheduling, reporting, etc.)


  • GIS based, GIS platform: Includes STEMgis Temporal GIS as part of software package 

  • Tool is web based

  • Tool has a GUI available

  • Tool does simulations

  • Tool does simulations

  • Tool handles socio-economic impacts

  • Visualization capabilities: 2D, 3D, 4D

Expertise Needed

Equipment needs: Windows 2000, XP, Vista

Technical expertise: Basic computer skills sufficient, Some computer/GIS/programming skills necessary

Scientific expertise: Extensive scientific training required

Types of Data Needed

Input formats: Shape, DXF, MIF, CSV, BMP, JPG, PNG,native formats

Output formats: Shape, AVI, BMP, SVG, Printer

How Do I Get It?


Tool cost: 350/500 British pounds academic/commercial license

Related Tools

Related tools: Sim Coast is hosted within the STEMgis GIS software

Contact Information

Developer: Discovery Software Ltd. & View The World Ltd.


Phone: 44 (0)1803 663975