Building Global Capacity for Marine Sciences, Observation, and Transfer of Marine Technology
Description/achievement of initiative

This commitment aims at conducting a global and regional assessment of capacity development needs in the field of marine scientific research and ocean observation in developing nations and SIDS, leading to the formulation and implementation of a global strategy to implement these needs, through partnership with countries, donors, UN Agencies, global financial institutions, and the private sector. This commitment is based on the proposal contained in the UN Blueprint Report on Ocean and Coastal Sustainability and will be implemented in close cooperation with Global Ocean Forum led Voluntary Commitment on building global capacity for integrated ocean governance.

Implementation methodologies

Many international fora (WSSD, Rio+20, UN-ICPOLoS, UN Regular Process) have identified the need to strengthen marine science capacities of developing nations in order to advance sustainable ocean management at all levels. This initiative will first develop a methodology, including indicators and sources of data, to conduct a capacity assessment in at least 20 countries, identified in consultation with regional ocean organisations. A report will be produced, providing a baseline, with statistical data, and a synthesis on national marine sciences and observation infrastructures. Recommendations concerning capacities and possible mechanisms that address gaps and needs will be identified. A strategy will be formulated in consultation with member states, based on the need to strengthen national institutions, individual skills and knowledge, national science-policy frameworks in the short and long term. Workshops will be organised with countries and donors to validate the strategy for partnerships and funding.

The IOC Capacity Development commitment will be aimed at three major audiences:
- national and regional marine science organisations and individuals,
- national policy-makers in charge of allocating resources,
- International and UN organisations, bilateral donors, financial institutions that will be able to identify priority areas for assistance.


Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO
(in partnership with Global Ocean Forum Commitment on Capacity Building for Integrated Ocean Governance)
Deliverable Date
Research methodology, including literature review, indicators and sources of information for the baseline assessment 2012
Full report of the survey, complete of statistics and recommendations for 20 countries 2013
Workshops to present and validate capacity building strategy with partners and countries 2013
Implementation of Capacity Building Strategy, through programme and project development leading to Phase II Implementation of the assessment and strategy formulation for 20 more countries 2013
Resources devoted to implementation
Type Details
Financing (in USD) $100,000
In-kind contribution In Kind contributions participating countries

  • Location: Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean and Asia and the Pacific, including SIDS Member States.
  • Date of completion: 2013-09-30
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Wendy Watson Wright, IOC Executive Secretary, ADG of UNESCO for IOC,

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