In 2017, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) (‘the Ocean Decade’). The vision of the Ocean Decade is ‘the science we need for the ocean we want’, and it envisages nothing less than a revolution in ocean science that will trigger a step change in humanity’s relationship with the ocean. It will bring together scientists, resource providers, governments, business and industry, philanthropic Foundations, UN agencies and many other stakeholders from diverse sectors to generate scientific knowledge and develop the partnerships needed to support a well-functioning, productive, resilient, and sustainable ocean.
To stimulate the ambitious global ocean science agenda of the Ocean Decade, the Ocean Decade Alliance (‘the Alliance’) has been established to leverage and multiply financial and in-kind resource commitments towards the Decade. The Alliance aims to create a network of eminent partners of the Ocean Decade that can lead by example to catalyse support for the Decade through targeted resource mobilization, networking, and influence.
The Alliance is a global platform that will occupy a high profile and unique niche. The Alliance focuses on action and the shared development of solutions. Its mandate is unparalleled, and aims to support resource mobilisation for ocean science in all its manifestations to achieve the vision of the Ocean Decade and thus contribute to the 2030 Agenda.
At the highest level, the Alliance will allow members to be part of a collective, global, UN-led effort to resolve some of the world’s most pressing challenges. Rather than being bystanders, Alliance members will have the opportunity to shape the strategic implementation of the Ocean Decade. They will be recognised as global leaders supporting ocean science via the Ocean Decade communications tools and through high-level participation in conferences or meetings. In joining the collective effort of the Alliance, members will not relinquish their own priorities or procedures for providing support. Alliance members will have new opportunities for formal and informal networking – both amongst other members of the Alliance and with stakeholders seeking resources. This will potentially lead to new collaborations for joint funding or initiatives, as well as opportunities to optimise synergies activities supported by Alliance members. The Alliance will provide members with access to leaders in ocean science thus creating opportunities to fund or support the most innovative ocean science initiatives under the Ocean Decade.
Membership of the Alliance will be by invitation, based on a demonstrated and sustained commitment to the vision of the Ocean Decade including alignment of resource provision strategies with the priorities of the Decade, and commitment of significant in-kind or financial support to Decade Actions or coordination costs. The Alliance will have a diverse, yet relatively small, membership. Membership will primarily be at the institutional level; however, high profile individuals within member organisations can choose to be recognised as Ocean Decade Patrons and thus have their individual commitments to the Ocean Decade recognised. Importantly, the Alliance will create space for the emergence of new leaders within the ocean community that come from a diversity of profiles.
Patrons of the Ocean Decade Alliance
HE Hon Uhuru Kenyatta, President of Kenya
HE Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of Portugal
His Serene Highness Prince Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco
Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Norway
HRH Princess Lalla Hasnaa, President, Mohamed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment
Ms Inger Andersen, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme
Ms Wendy Schmidt, Founder Schmidt Ocean Institute
Mr John Schubert AO, Chair Great Barrier Reef Foundation
Republic of Portugal
Republic of Korea
Schmidt Ocean Institute
Prince Albert 2 of Monaco Foundation
Great Barrier Reef Foundation
Mohamed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment
United Nations Environment Programme
International Seabed Authority
UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) is coordinating the Ocean Decade preparations on behalf of the UN system, and leading the establishment of the Alliance. For more information on becoming a member of the Ocean Decade Alliance please contact:
Head of Marine Policy and Regional Coordination Section UN Decade Focal Point