Bringing the Ocean to Society
10 Dec 2019
IOC launches Alliance for Un Ocean Decade
The EurOcean Cooperating Member will build a network to stimulate and motivate ambitious actions in advancing ocean science towards addressing societal needs.

As a commitment to Our Ocean Conference (23-24 October 2019, Oslo, Norway), Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of (EurOcean's Cooperating Member) UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission has announced the constitution of an Alliance for the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).

The Decade Alliance will recruit its members in the lead to the 2nd United Nations Ocean Conference (2-6 June 2020, Lisbon, Portugal), where it will be officially presented as a global coalition of ocean actors working together to support, enhance and leverage commitments towards the Decade.

The idea is to form a network of leaders from governments, United Nations organizations, scientific institutions, private sector and philanthropic organizations, among others, who will stimulate and motivate others to take ambitious action in advancing ocean science towards addressing societal needs. 

“All our actions must be knowledge-based. The United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development will help us by providing ocean science, data and information to inform for our policies”, declared Erna Solberg, Norway Prime Minister in her opening speech.

The announcement was made by Vladimir Ryabinin, IOC’s Executive Secretary during the opening of a side event on Forging Transformative Partnerships for the Decade – co-organized by the IOC-UNESCO and the United Nations Global Compact. Dr. Ryabinin “cordially and enthusiastically invited” all interested actors to join “the Ocean Decade Alliance, a coalition of willing of institutions, agencies, foundations that will be implementing and injecting energy into the Decade”.

Three main tasks are foreseen for the Alliance:

  • Raise awareness about the Decade objectives and activities world-wide and build support to the Decade by all concerned actors; 
  • Create a platform demonstrating the role and power of science in providing solutions for ocean sustainability; and
  • Establish a broad international network that stimulates actions and commitments in the framework of the UN Decade at all societal levels.

As part of the Alliance, members agree to the following principles: 

  • Promote  and communicate the importance and value of ocean science at all level of society;
  • Support the development of inter-operable ocean knowledge systems as a decision support tool and means to deliver effectively information to those who need it;
  • Apply good scientific practice and ethics for publicly funded ocean science, and engage end-users from the design phase;
  • Integrate an ecosystem-based approach in policy making, e,g. maritime spatial planning at the global, regional and local level;
  • Facilitate the development and deployment of innovative technologies and solutions;
  • Support individual and institutional capacity development, especially in least developed countries and Small Island Developing States;
  • Contribute with funding and/or in-kind contribution to the Decade activities;
  • Increase national support towards ocean science, and research relevant infrastructures;
  • Adhere to the principle of free, open and accessible data;
  • Be committed to undertake outreach activities to stimulate international and interdisciplinary collaboration.

For more information, please contact Julian Barbière, Focal Point for the Decade - j.barbiere@unesco.org