Introduction to Ocean Governance Short Course


Introduction to Ocean Governance: Insights into Ongoing Policy Process and Lessons for Early Career Professionals

Co-hosted by: Beth Orcutt (Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences and Associate Director of COBRA) and Ben Boteler (Research Institute for Sustainability (RIFS) in Potsdam and TMG Think Tank for Sustainability)

Have you ever wondered how your science can connect with ocean policy development, like those related to climate change or deep-sea mining? Or have you wondered about how ocean policy is developed and informed by science and scientists? This virtual event (2 half days) aims to provide a general introduction to ocean governance for scientists and other stakeholders, and will cover key policy processes and ongoing discussions in selected policy fields relevant to ocean science. Topics covered in the event include the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), fisheries including key global and regional processes, deep-sea mining and the International Seabed Authority, and the global agreement covering biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (the BBNJ Agreement). In addition, the event will offer insights into capacity development and scientific outreach, and opportunities for engagement including from early career professionals. The event will include presentations and an interactive group session to explore sticking points within ocean governance in small groups, with opportunities for participants to engage in these processes.

Day 1 Thursday - 7 September (2.5 hours)

Time Description
8:00AM EDT/ 2:00PM CEST IntroductionBeth Orcutt (COBRA Network) & Ben Boteler (RIFS & TMG) – 10 minutes

8:10AM / 2:10PM Introduction to ocean governanceDavid Johnson (Seascape Consultants & GOBI) – 30 minute presentation + 10 minute Q&A

Perspective: Barbara Neumann (RIFS)

8:50AM / 2:50PM Introduction to fisheriesMatt Gianni (GC & DSCC) – 20 minute presentation + 10 minute Q&A

9:20AM / 3:20PM Comfort break – 5 minutes
9:25AM / 3:25PM Capacity development for ocean governanceVikki Gunn (Seascape Consultants & GOBI) – 20 minute presentation + 10 minute Q&A

9:55AM / 3:55PM Early career researchers in ocean governanceMaila Guilhon (RIFS & Ocean Voices) – 10 minute interactive + 15 minute presentation + 5 minute final reflections

10:25AM / 4:25PM Wrap up and close of dayBeth Orcutt (COBRA Network) & Ben Boteler (RIFS & TMG) – 5 minutes
10:30AM / 4:30PM End of Day 1

Day 2 Friday - 8 September (2.5 hours)

Time Description
8:00AM EDT/ 2:00PM CEST Introduction to Day 2Beth Orcutt (COBRA Network) & Ben Boteler (RIFS & TMG) – 5 minutes
8:05AM / 2:05PM Deep sea miningPradeep Singh (RIFS) – 20 minute presentation + 10 minute Q&A

8:35AM / 2:35PM Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ)Ben Boteler (RIFS & TMG) – 20 minute presentation + 10 minute Q&A

9:05AM / 3:05PM Comfort break – 5 minutes
9:10AM / 3:10PM Interactive exercise, including opportunities for engagementBen Boteler (RIFS & TMG), Pradeep Singh (RIFS), and Maila Guilhon (RIFS) – 5 minute introduction + 60 minute group discussion + 10 minute reporting back

Moderators: Ben Boteler (RIFS), Laisa Branco (DOSI Minerals WG), Maila Guilhon (RIFS), Pradeep Singh (RIFS), Linda del Salvio (RIFS), Daniela Loock (COBRA/ONC), Beth Orcutt (COBRA), Geoff Wheat (COBRA)

10:25AM / 4:25PM
Wrap up and close of workshopBeth Orcutt (COBRA Network) & Ben Boteler (RIFS and TMG) – 5 minutes
10:30AM / 4:30PM End of Day 2


Durussel, C., Wright, G., Wienrich, N., Boteler, B., Unger, S., Rochette, J. Strengthening Regional Ocean Governance for the High Seas: Opportunities and Challenges to Improve the Legal and Institutional Framework of the Southeast Atlantic and Southeast Pacific, STRONG High Seas Project, 2018.

Diz D., Hazin C., Boteler B., Durussel C. Glossary of Ocean Governance Terms. STRONG High Seas Project, 2022.


COBRA Code of Conduct

Like in our monthly webinar series, COBRA is committed to providing a virtual meeting space where all participants feel welcome, safe, and included. By registering for and attending this training, you agree to review and abide by our non-discriminatory Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct and Conflict of Interest Policy in line with our commitment to contributing to making deep-sea research more just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive.

COBRA Monthly Webinar Series

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