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Networking Friday on the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development

On December 18th, 2020, 1-3 PM UTC, we had our last session of the year of 2020 and this was a very special session on “The Ocean Decade: a framework for transformative change at the regional and national level“. After years of thoughtful design and strongly participative preparation, the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development will start January 1st, 2021. It will be key to “reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health and gather ocean stakeholders worldwide behind a common framework that will ensure ocean science can fully support countries in creating improved conditions for sustainable development of the Ocean”.

The program covered several aspects of the Ocean Decade:

  • 1:00 PM UTC | Welcome and housekeeping, Luis Pinheiro, Chairman, Portuguese Committee for IOC
  • 1:05 PM UTC | Update on the Ocean Decade and launch of the report ‘Engaging and Empowering Regional Stakeholders: Synthesis of Regional Consultation Workshops (2019–2020)’, Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary, IOC.
  • 1:15 PM UTC | Opening remarks, Minister Manuel Heitor, Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, Portugal
  • 1:25 PM UTC | Video – Ocean Decade preparation phase
  • 1:30 PM UTC | Co-designing the science we need for the ocean we want at the global and regional level, Susanne Moser, Expert in collaborative research and co-design, IOC Consultant
  • 1:50 PM UTC | Panel discussion moderated by Luis Pinheiro: Translating the Ocean Decade to regional and national action, with Cesar Toro, Western Tropical Atlantic Regional Planning Group; Karen Silverwood-Cope, Brazil National Committee; Taylor Goelz, Research Associate NOAA, Early Career Ocean Professional Working Group
  • 2:15 PM UTC | What’s next for the Decade?, Alison Clausen, Programme Specialist, IOC
  • 2:30 PM UTC | Closing Concert with Jazz Pianist Mário Laginha

Relevant Links


Minister Manuel Heitor

Minister Manuel Heitor

Manuel Heitor is the Portuguese Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education of Portugal since November 2015, having been Secretary of State for Science, Technology and Higher Education between March 2005 and June 2011.

He is a Full Professor at the Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisbon, having a PhD from the Imperial College of London in Mechanical Engineering (Experimental Combustion, 1985).

He did a postdoctoral position at the University of California at San Diego, 1986, having subsequently pursued an academic career at the Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) in Lisbon, where he started to develop his research activity in the area of ​​energy and environment, with an emphasis on Fluid Mechanics and Experimental Combustion.

He served as Deputy President of the Instituto Superior Técnico between 1993 and 1998, having dedicated himself since the early 1990s to the study of science, technology and innovation policies, including higher education policies and management. In 1998, he founded the Center for Innovation, Technology and Policy Research (IN+) at IST, which was named in 2005 as one of the Top 50 global centers of research on Management of Technology, by the International Association for the Management of Technology (IAMOT).

He coordinated, among others, the IST PhD programs in Engineering and Public Policies and in Design Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing Systems. He was a Research Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin, at the IC2 Institute, Innovation, Creativity and Capital, and during the 2011/12 academic year he was a Visiting Professor at Harvard University, both in the United States of America.

Vladimir Ryabinin

Vladimir Ryabinin

Vladimir Ryabinin is the Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO and Assistant Director-General of UNESCO. He is an oceanographer, marine engineer, meteorologist, and climatologist.

He graduated in 1978 as marine engineer, defended his Ph.D. in 1982, and received the academic distinction of Doctor of Sciences Thesis in 1995. In 1980 he started to work at the Hydrometeorological Center of Russia occupying positions from junior researcher to a head of laboratory. In 1990-1991 he gave a course of lectures on numerical modelling at the Geographical Faculty of the Moscow State University. In 2000 he joined the International Ocean Institute, initially as consultant and later was selected as the Executive Director. In late 2001 he joined the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) as the Senior Scientific Officer of the World Climate Research Programme, contributing to international coordination of climate research on polar, ocean, cryosphere, stratosphere and atmospheric chemistry. He was appointed as Executive Secretary of IOC following voting to form a short list of preferential candidates by the IOC Executive Council. He took the post in March 2015. In 2017, by a Presidential decree he received a distinction of the Emeritus Meteorologist of the Russian Federation.

Dr. Ryabinin’s research started in 1970s with studies of turbulence in stratified fluids and analytical studies of the ocean circulation and thermodynamics. He is one of key contributors to the first technology of medium-range (weekly time scale) weather prediction in the USSR (1980s). In 1990s he was the scientific leader of national research on marine meteorological services. Also, then he led a major shelf engineering study aimed at determining the safe burying depth of a polar offshore pipeline in presence of sea ice and. He is originator of several mathematical models for ocean, atmosphere, wind waves, etc., and an author of hundreds of scientific publications.

Susanne Moser

Susanne Moser

Dr. Susanne Moser is a consultant to the IOC for the Global Ocean Webinar series and also serves as Senior Advisor to the International Science Council’s Transformations to Sustainability Programme, a partner to the Ocean Decade. Dr. Moser is a geographer by training (Ph.D. 1997, Clark University) who works in the US and internationally on adaptation to climate change, science-policy interactions, climate change communication, and psycho-social resilience in the face of the traumatic and transformative challenges associated with climate change. She has served on scientific advisory boards for Future Earth, the US National Research Council, and contributed to IPCC and US national and regional climate assessments.

Cesar Toro

Cesar Toro

Dr. Cesar TORO is the Head of the Subcommission for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions IOCARIBE of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC of UNESCO), based in Cartagena Colombia. Between 2009 and 2015 he was also responsible for the UNESCO Natural Sciences Programme for the Caribbean. From IOCARIBE he has promoted the development of marine and ocean sciences and technology in the states of the region through the strengthening of institutional capacity, coordination of intergovernmental group and networks of scientists and experts. He coordinates IOC of UNESCO programmes in the Latin American and Caribbean region with those of the organizations of the United Nations system, working actively with national, regional and international agencies and entities.

Dr. TORO is a physical oceanographer, M.Sc. in oceanography and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Quebec, Canada in Physical Oceanography. Dr. Toro is a specialist in dynamical oceanography and climate change adaptation and mitigation, sustainable development and ocean governance and policy. He also has an extensive experience working for the oil and gas industry, the United Nations, and in project and programme design and implementation, especially in developing countries and SIDS.

Karen Silverwood-Cope

Karen Silverwood-Cope

Karen Silverwood-Cope is the General Coordinator for Ocean, Antarctic and Geo Sciences at the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Brazil (MSTI). The MSTI is the leading organization of the national steering committee for the Ocean Decade implementation.

Taylor Goelz

Taylor Goelz

Taylor Goelz, MS/MPP, is a marine social scientist and policy analyst. Currently serving as a John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellow at NOAA Research, Goelz is leading preparation, collaboration, and outreach in the United States for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030). Her background and expertise spans the realm of marine resources management, from participatory decision making processes for oyster management to finance mechanisms for coastal resilience. She’s passionate about finding unique approaches and solutions to common problems and creating novel partnerships. Goelz graduated in 2019 from the dual degree program with a master’s degree in marine science and a master’s of public policy through William & Mary and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science. She received her bachelors in Environmental Studies from the University of San Diego in 2014.

Alison Clausen

Alison Clausen

Alison Clausen joined IOC as a programme specialist in 2019 with over twenty years’ professional experience in program and project development and management in the areas of marine conservation, marine policy, and climate change adaptation. Before joining IOC she was based in Madagascar, where she worked throughout the Western Indian Ocean region for the World Bank and most recently as the Regional Director for the Madagascar and Western Indian Ocean program of the Wildlife Conservation Society. Prior to that she lived in Vietnam where she worked through South East Asia for a range of development banks, UN agencies and NGO partners. She is currently working on diverse ocean and marine policy issues including support to the coordination of the preparation of the Ocean Decade.

Jazz Concert

Mario Laginha

Mário Laginha

Mário João Laginha dos Santos is a pianist and composer, one of the most well-known Portuguese jazz musicians today. He is mostly recognized for his collaborations with Portuguese jazz singer Maria João, with whom he recorded over a dozen albums and toured worldwide extensively. Other acknowledged collaboration work includes four-handed piano sessions with Bernardo Sassetti and Pedro Burmester.


Luis Pinehrio Menzes

Luís Pinheiro Menezes

Marine geophysicist. Professor of Marine Geology and Geophysics at the University of Aveiro, Portugal. Chairman of the Portuguese Committee to the IOC of UNESCO, and National Delegate to the IOC Executive Council. Chairman of the Marine Geosciences Committee of the Commission for the Scientific Exploration of the Mediterranean (CIESM). Participated in more than 50 Research Cruises (35 as Chief/Co-Chief Scientist). Author/co-author of more than 250 publications, including 60 ISI papers, book editions and book chapters. Research interests: Marine Geology and Geophysics; geophysical data processing and interpretation; structure and evolution of continental passive margins; mud volcanism, shallow gas and gas hydrates; Seismic Oceanography.


This session would not have been possible without Alison Clausen’s creativity, hard work and dedication. For that, we will be forever grateful.

We will come back with the Networking Fridays on January 15, 2021. More information about future sessions as well as presentations and videos from previous sessions can be found here. Twitter Hashtag: #netfridays. Expect some very exciting afternoons, or mornings or evenings, depending on where you are…

If you need any additional information please send an email to Jose Luiz Moutinho.