Bringing the Ocean to Society
9 May 2018
Marine Graduates Vital to Sustainable Future Blue Economy
How can we train the marine graduates of today for the ocean challenges of tomorrow?

The seas around us have been identified as being key for economic growth and innovation. The European Commission estimates “that the ‘blue’ economy represents roughly 5.4 million jobs and generates a gross added value of almost €500 billion a year”. However, in order to realise this sustainable growth, we will need a highly educated, knowledgeable and multi-skilled workforce. These future marine professionals will be largely drawn from the pool of graduates who are currently receiving Masters and Doctoral level training in marine science and engineering fields across Europe.

Given the significant role they will have to play, it is vital to ensure that the education and training programmes for those graduates are able to deliver. A new Future Science Brief, published by the European Marine Board, presents a vision for the future of marine graduate education and training in Europe, and makes recommendations that will help modernise the current landscape to ensure a fit-for-purpose system.

“It is recognized that training itself, and the delivery of high-quality graduate programmes, is a key part of the engine which will drive innovation, sustainability and technology development in marine and maritime sectors.” says Jan Mees, Chair, European Marine Board (EMB) and Director, Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ).

A key recommendation of the EMB report is that marine education and training institutes must identify ways to improve the capabilities of future marine scientists and engineers to work at a systems level. This is essential to build, and apply, multi-disciplinary knowledge to address complex marine issues which cut across scientific, environmental and social systems.

It will take collaboration between the marine community, the marine and maritime industries, and research funders to implement this vision and ensure that we are not just equipped to face the challenges ahead, but are also able to benefit from the opportunities that arise.

You can find out more here.