WMU Co-Hosts Satellite Event at Ocean Decade Conference

On 12 April, the World Maritime University (WMU) - Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute (GOI) co-hosted the “Empowering Women for the Ocean Decade: Achieving Gender Equality in Ocean Sciences and Policy Making” satellite event during the 2024 Ocean Decade Conference, held in Barcelona, Spain. Additional co-hosts included the International Seabed Authority (ISA) and the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO). 

Opening remarks on the topic of gender empowerment were delivered by Professor Ronán Long, Director of the GOI, Secretary-General Michael Lodge of the ISA, and Secretary-General Mathias Jonas of the IHO. Dr. Arran McPherson, Assistant Deputy Minister of Ecosystems and Oceans Science (Canada), delivered the keynote address emphasizing the pressing need to recognize women’s contributions to ocean science and take effective actions to promote women’s representation and participation in relevant bodies. This was followed by a scientific session on the topic of Transformative Actions to Empower Women. Ms. Marzia Rovere and Ms. Rima Browne shared the experience and lessons learnt from participating in the ISA Women in Deep-Sea Research project, followed by Ms. Ellen Johannesen, Dr. Renis Auma Ojwala and Dr. Mariamalia Rodriguez Chaves who shared their research work under the WMU-GOI Empowering Women for the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development Programme.

The event concluded with a town hall discussion titled “Achieving Gender Equality for the Ocean Decade”, in which speakers from the ISA, the IHO, IOC-UNESCO and the Schmidt Ocean Institute shared their insights on best practices to promote women’s representation in leadership positions, and actions needed to strengthen gender equality in the Decade and beyond.

The satellite event was well attended by participants from academia, governmental, non-governmental organizations, scientific community and policy makers.

About the DFO-WMU Empowering Women for the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development Programme

The purpose of the Empowering Women Programme is to advance an alternative, inclusive model for the sustainable governance of ocean spaces and maritime activities that duly takes into account the need to ensure effective gender equality and the empowerment of women at all levels in order to ensure the sustainable management of the global ocean. The Programme is endorsed by IOC-UNESCO as a Decade Action and will play a central role in supporting the Ocean Decade mission to catalyze transformative ocean science solutions for sustainable development. The Empowering Women for the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development Programme is generously funded by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) with additional support from The Nippon Foundation. 

About the WMU-Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute

The vision of the WMU-Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute is to act as an independent focal point for the ocean science-policy-law-industry-society interface where policy makers, the scientific community, regulators, industry actors, academics, and representatives of civil society meet to discuss how best to manage and use ocean spaces and their resources in accordance with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Institute was inaugurated in May 2018 and made possible through generous support from The Nippon Foundation of Japan, the Governments of Sweden, Canada, and Germany, as well as the City of Malmö. 

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