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The EU4Ocean Platform: Co-Designing Ocean Literacy For Society

Event date:
24/09/2020 - 10:30
Table of Contents

    The EU4Ocean Platform is a focal point in Europe for professionals to connect, collaborate and mobilise efforts in Ocean Literacy. As part of a 2 day EU4Ocean online event, the EU4Ocean Platform organised a webinar on 24 September 2020 at 10:30-12:00 CEST. This was a fully public, online event, open to all and attended by over 240 participants from the European Union (87%), wider Europe (7%), Africa (2%), South America (2%), North America (1%) and Asia (1%).

    The main aims and objectives of the workshop were to raise awareness about the EU4Ocean Platform, to inform wider stakeholders about the latest Platform developments, and to motivate stakeholders to join the Platform, for collective action.

    The meeting was co-designed with EU4Ocean Platform founding members and Chaired by EU4Ocean Platform Chair James Nikitine. BBC Presenter and explorer Paul Rose gave a keynote introduction. A number of founding members, together with Platform and Working Group Chairs joined a Panel to discuss the challenges of successful ocean literacy for their sector, and the added value of the Platform and diverse stakeholder interaction to enable this. Andy Kontoudakis, DG MARE, European Commission, concluded with a forward look.

    Participants in the EU4Ocean Platform workshop included stakeholders from marine and other research organisations (41%), communication, advocacy and outreach (23%), education (22%), marine/maritime business (5%), art (2%) and other sectors (7%).

    Paul Rose pointed out that “the best way to understand the ocean is to be a diver! But - our great EU4Ocean Platform comes very, very close. We all feel a bit wet, salty, windblown and energized”.

    Key messages highlighted during the workshops were:

    • Everything is connected with Ocean literacy, but most progress is achieved by working together. We should build bridges across sectors which are not directly linked but could have multiple connections.
    • The Platform and the wider Coalition has been set up by members, for members, with a central guiding principle for inclusiveness and co-design. 
    • The EU4Ocean Platform now has over 100 members, and is ever expanding as an inclusive, diverse (by sector and country) professional stakeholder hub for Ocean Literacy in Europe. Check out the members’ map.
    • It’s crucial to connect the Youth, and Blue Careers with Ocean Literacy. 
    • A major challenge for researchers is promoting research results. Transferring knowledge is important, and cooperating with educators is a good way to achieve this.
    • The EU4Ocean network will be a chance to make existing [e.g. national ocean literacy] networks stronger, to be more active, to make collaborations, to be inspired.
    • The greatest challenge is to catch the multidimensionality, and the EU4Ocean Platform can move this forward.
    • Ocean Literacy is an opportunity to connect and add value. We need to have out of the box ideas, we need to be sustainable, we need to be creative, we need to be inclusive.

    To learn more about the workshop, download the final agenda, speaker biographies and the presentations.

    Upcoming activities include a EU4Ocean Platform online tele-meeting for all members in January 2021, further discussions and developments in and across the thematic Working Groups meetings on Ocean and Climate, Food from the Ocean and Healthy and Clean Oceans, and a series of sea-basin events in 2021.

    The EU4Ocean Platform will continue to grow as new organisations are encouraged to participate in the Platform. Interested in joining the more than 100 members and diving into the Platform’s activities? Read the Platform key facts  and then apply online!

    Workshop recording

    The workshop was organised as part of the EU4Ocean Coalition for Ocean Literacy. Further information on EU4Ocean is available on the website.

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