Bringing the Ocean to Society
30 Mar 2017
Much remains to be done in supporting and institutionalising marine knowledge transfer
Outcomes of EurOcean organised Event at European Parliament on Knowledge Exchange now available in newly published report

The objective of the EurOcean and CPMR organised seminar and discussion held at the European Parliament on October 13 2016 was to explore how methods, processes and engagement in knowledge exchange between different stakeholders concerned with Blue Growth could be improved.

Speakers included MEPs and European Commission representatives, those working in marine clusters around Europe, those supporting knowledge transfer initiatives through projects and networks and regional authority representatives. The report published on the event evidences good practice and successful efforts in relation to marine knowledge transfer and mutually beneficial collaboration between academia and the private sector.

Examples of European and regional supports fostering the enhancement of Blue Growth were described. Yet much remains to be done in supporting, improving and institutionalising marine knowledge transfer, coordinating efforts across Europe and measuring the impact and success of Blue Growth initiatives. 

Although the presentations and discussions were wide ranging a number of conclusions can be identified:

  • Marine Knowledge Exchange and Transfer are multi-faceted and they still require specific recognition, supports and coordination at local, regional and European level in order to be effective. 
  • Marine clusters can be effective in breaking down barriers and encouraging fruitful collaboration between the research community and industry, nevertheless further regional supports are required to support cooperation and collaboration. 
  • Smart Specialisation Strategies are helping in coordinating activities at the regional level, but there is an ongoing need for improved trans-European coordination of marine regional research-driven clusters.
  • There are initiatives to measure socio-economic impact of investments in Blue Growth, however many are in their infancy.
  • There is a need for further capacity building and training in many areas, and particularly in relation to knowledge transfer to support Blue Growth. 
  • Knowledge transfer is supported through European Commission projects such as COLUMBUS but institutionalising such efforts for the long term remains a challenge.
  • There should be stronger and broader societal engagement in activities around Blue Growth.
  • Further dialogue between actors in this area is required and there was a proposal from Iain SHEPHERD, Marine South East to organise a follow-on event in association with the European Maritime Day Conference 2017.

The full report with links to the presentations can be downloaded here.