Humans depend on a healthy and productive ocean - for their livelihoods, health, and cultures. As well as being a vital source of sustenance, the ocean regulates the global climate and hosts a wealth of biodiversity. But it is facing growing threats as human uses and impacts continue to exceed sustainable limits. A lack of adequate management frameworks is adding to the severe pressures on it.
The Ocean Governance research group at the IASS generates knowledge and initiates participatory dialogues in order to analyse and respond to the causes of ocean decline and to support ocean governance processes. It also contributes to the development of new approaches and regulatory frameworks.
Its transformative work focuses on three processes:
- The implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in particular the Sustainable Development Goal on oceans, seas, and marine resources (SDG 14)
- The negotiation of a legally binding instrument under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ)
- The development of international rules for deep seabed mining
The interdisciplinary team addresses the following key questions: How can the SDGs be translated into policy processes? How can marine biodiversity be protected in areas beyond national jurisdiction? What regulatory frameworks do we need to manage the mining of deep seabed mineral resources?
As part of a transdisciplinary research agenda, the team also provides solution-oriented advice to decision-makers and societal actors with a view to transforming the responses to the urgent challenges facing our ocean.
In addition to the projects listed below, the research group conducts the project "Marine Conservation in the Arctic" in cooperation with the group "Arctic Governance".