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Location: Provinciaal Hof, Brugge, Belgium
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- Vlaams Instituut voor de Zee (VLIZ), more, organiser
- European Science Foundation; European Marine Board (EMB), more, organiser
- European Marine Science Education Association (EMSEA), more, organiser
- Marine Biological Association of the UK (MBA), more, organiser
- University of Gothenburg, more, organiser
- National Marine Educators Association (NMEA), more, organiser
- College of Exploration, more, organiser
Every European citizen, whether living at the coast or inland, is affected by the sea and the ocean. Members of the ocean sciences and education communities express their concerns about the limited understanding of European citizens on how the ocean impacts our daily lifes and how we influence the ocean. While in a time when oceans, seas and coastal areas are shaping the globe and men’s society, more than ever, being ocean literate could be vital to make informed and responsible decisions regarding the ocean and its resources.
The first European conference on ocean literacy addresses the lack of ocean-related content in science education standards. One cannot be science literate without being ocean literate. The conference also wants to emphasize how marine education projects and informal education efforts (aquaria, science centres, museums, media,…) lead to more public involvement and active participation. In addition Ocean literacy is a prerequisite for Europe’s quest for a more ocean-oriented society and economy. Preparing an entire community towards a closer living with the sea is rewarding for the marine research community and their science policy-makers. A more informed public will better understand and support investments in ocean sciences and the need to manage the marine ecosystem in a sustainable and respectful way.
Objectives of the conference
- Stimulate dialogue on ocean literacy between European (and international) marine educators, scientists and policy makers.
- Explore how to bring ocean sciences into the mainstream science education. Ocean sciences are to become an essential part to science literacy.
- Introduce initiatives that can facilitate networking and map ocean science education initiatives.
- Collaborate with the wider international community on Ocean literacy.