Networking Fridays on Ocean Literacy for Sustainable Blue Economy

On June 28th, 2021, 12 PM UTC / 2 PM UTC, a fantastic panel will present and discuss ocean literacy for sustainable blue economy. Ocean literacy plays a relevant role in developing the blue economy due to its multifaceted significance. A comprehensive understanding of oceanic ecosystems, resources, and processes enables informed decision-making and effective management practices. Such knowledge empowers stakeholders to capitalize on marine resources while mitigating negative environmental impacts, fostering long-term economic growth. Moreover, ocean literacy promotes innovation and technological advancements in fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, and renewable energy sectors.

This Networking Friday session is promoted by  Sustainable Blue Economy Partnership – SBEP . SBEP represents an unprecedent effort of 60 Partner institutions from 25 countries and the European Commission to pool research and innovation investments and align national programmes at pan-European scale. As a Horizon Europe co-funded partnership, its strategy takes into consideration the R&I agendas of the sea basins (Mediterranean, Black Sea, Baltic and North Sea) and the Atlantic Ocean and builds on lessons learned from previous initiatives.

This webinar aims to debate and explore how investing in ocean literacy initiatives is essential for harnessing the full potential of the blue economy while safeguarding the health and resilience of marine ecosystems.

Programme (12 PM UTC / 2 PM CEST):

2:00  Welcome remarks and introduction by Jack Coulton, UNESCO-IOC
2:05  Ocean Literacy in the SBEP, Thorsten Kiefer, JPI Oceans
2:15  From barriers to solutions: Seafood Literacy in the Blue Economy, Juanita Zorrilla, SUBMON
2:25  Ocean literacy as a driver to attract talent to the maritime technologies, Lucia Fraga, CETMAR, ORESkills partnership
2:35  Ocean Literacy and Social media, Adriana Lippi, Women’s League for the Ocean (Liga Das Mulheres Pelo Oceano)
2:45  Q&A, moderated by Jack Coulton, UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe
3:00  Closing remarks


Thorsten Kiefer

Thorsten Kiefer

Ocean Literacy in the Sustainable Blue Economy Partnership

While Ocean Literacy traditionally has promoted mainly the environmental stewardship of the ocean, the SBEP emphasises a complementary perspective on how the transformation to a sustainable blue economy will create environmental and economic win-wins that benefit all of society. In this presentation, JPI Oceans will present the Partnership’s vision focussed on innovative ocean literacy for a sustainable blue economy.

Thorsten is the Executive Director of JPI Oceans, a pan-European platform aiming to increase efficiency and impact of research and innovation for sustainably healthy and productive seas and oceans. JPI Oceans leads the ‘ Communication, outreach and Ocean Literacy’ work package in the Sustainable Blue Economy Partnership. Before joining JPI Oceans in 2019, Thorsten was director of the Future Earth Global Hub in Paris, a global network of researchers and innovators in support of sustainability in environmental and societal sectors. Going back further, Thorsten was Executive Director of the Past Global Changes programme PAGES, faciliting global research and synthesis of environmental changes that pre-date systematic observations by using archives such as fossil corals, tree rings, sediments or ice cores. Thorsten’s roots are in research in the field of paleoceanography. At the Universities of Kiel, Germany and Cambridge, UK, he analysed deep-sea sediments to study the substantial oceanographic and climatic changes that took place over the past thousands to ten-thousands of years. In that capacity he was editor and co-chief editor of the open access journal Climate of the Past for about 10 years.

Juanita Zorrilla

Juanita Zorrilla

From barriers to solutions: Seafood Literacy in the Blue Economy

We will present the essential link between seafood literacy and the blue economy, highlighting how informed consumer choices can help prevent the overexploitation of marine resources. By educating the public on seafood sources, sustainability practices, and the ecological impact of their consumption, seafood literacy enables individuals to support marine conservation.
The SEA2SEE project, involving collaborative efforts across four European countries, has identified nine key action areas for promoting responsible seafood consumption through a Collective Intelligence process. A common factor identified in this process was the lack of seafood literacy. Based on these insights, a comprehensive strategy has been developed to engage consumers and promote greater awareness of responsible seafood consumption.

Juanita, Project Manager at SUBMON, holds an MSc in Marine and Coastal Management and a PhD in Environmental Education. She is a dedicated professional committed to ocean literacy, bridging the gap between science and society through innovative communication strategies. Juanita is involved in three Horizon Europe projects: SEA2SEE, OCEAN CITIZEN and BLUECONNECT, focused on engaging with communities through multiple creative strategies using science communication, seafood literacy, and awareness activities. Her aim is to increase ocean literacy and to develop practical solutions through this channel to overcome challenges in marine conservation.

Lucía Fraga

Ocean literacy as a driver to attract talent to the maritime technologies

Ocean literacy has the potential to shape attitudes within maritime sectors toward more sustainable practices. Recognizing the Principles of Ocean Literacy may lead to shifts in stakeholder behaviors, fostering greater environmental awareness and resource stewardship. The ERASMUS+ project ‘MATES’ has developed a strategy to address skills shortages in maritime technologies, emphasizing the importance of integrating ocean literacy into training programs. By aligning maritime education with transversal skills and environmental understanding, the strategy aims to enhance workforce readiness and resilience. This presentation provides insights into collaborative initiatives exploring the intersection of ocean literacy and talent attraction in offshore renewables. Attendees will delve into ongoing efforts and available tools, with an invitation to engage in discussions shaping the future of maritime technologies and connect with the vibrant communities driving skills development in offshore renewables.

Lucía graduated in Sciences of the Sea; since 2002, Lucía coordinates the Training department of the Technology Centre of the Sea, CETMAR, developing projects to improve the quality of life of the maritime sectors through training, promoting the green skills, and ocean literacy. She coordinated the MATES Blueprint project, to create a skilling strategy for the maritime technologies. Since 2021, she acts as secretariat of the Offshore Renewable Energy Large Scale Partnership in the Pact for Skills.

Adriana Lippi

Adriana Lippi

Ocean Literacy and Social media

Adriana is an Oceanographer, Science Communicator, Web Designer, Data Analyst and project manager in the not-for-profit sector. She communicates about science for its popularisation and to engage in discussions on the Climate Crises. Member of the Executive Secretariat of the Women’s League for the Ocean, a network movement that integrates efforts to emancipate women and works towards ocean conservation.


Jack Coulton

Jack Coulton

Jack Coulton is an Ocean Literacy Consultant and Focal Point for Communication at the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe. Experienced writer, translator and editor.

We will continue with the Networking Fridays during the next months. 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 Catarina Paes Duarte.

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