Decade Advisory Board leverages Vision 2030 outcomes to identify priority actions for the Ocean Decade


Decade Advisory Board leverages Vision 2030 outcomes to identify priority actions for the Ocean Decade

Decade Advisory Board leverages Vision 2030 outcomes to identify priority actions for the Ocean Decade 2483 1378 Ocean Decade

One month following the 2024 Ocean Decade Conference, the new Decade Advisory Board members convened for their first in-person meeting from 21 to 23 May 2024 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France. The discussions centered on updates on Ocean Decade implementation, its prospects, and strategic orientation, guided by the outcomes of the Ocean Decade Vision 2030 process.

In response to the rapid expansion of the Ocean Decade ecosystem, the second cohort of the multi-stakeholder Decade Advisory Board was established last December. Comprising experts from diverse backgrounds and representing over a dozen countries, the 15-member panel will bring new viewpoints and strategic guidance on the next steps and priorities for the Ocean Decade for the period 2024-2025.

During the three-day meeting, the Decade Coordination Unit, hosted within the Secretariat of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (UNESCO-IOC), provided key updates and perspectives on the Ocean Decade, with a focus on resource mobilization strategies. With 2025 marking the halfway point of the initiative, it was also the occasion to outline requirements for a mid-term evaluation, allowing for a comprehensive stocktaking of progress at global and regional levels.

Members of the Decade Advisory Board at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France.

A large part of the discussions was dedicated to the outcomes of Vision 2030, the Ocean Decade’s strategic ambition setting process for identifying a common measure of success for each of the 10 Decade Challenges. Through dedicated Working Group sessions, Board members explored cross-cutting priority themes emerging from the Vision 2030 Outcomes Report and 10 White Papers and made a series of recommendations. Among these were the need for clear strategies to target, expand, and sustain financing and resources for Decade Actions, as well as to strengthen the ocean science-policy interface through dialogue with multiple stakeholders at all levels.

The overview and discussions around the strategic ambition for each Challenge enabled the identification of high-level targets for the Ocean Decade leading up to three key milestones: the 2025 UN Ocean Conference, the next Ocean Decade Conference in 2027, and the end of the Decade in 2030.

The exchanges also covered capacity development and inclusivity, in particular under the umbrella of the Ocean Decade Capacity Development Facility. Board members outlined a set of actions aimed at facilitating the development of funding models, skill sets, employment opportunities, access to data, and inclusion in global decision-making entities for scientists and policymakers.

“The Decade Advisory Board plays a key part in building the Ocean Decade roadmap to 2030,” said Vidar Helgesen, Executive Secretary of the UNESCO-IOC and Assistant Director-General of UNESCO. “We have come out of this gathering with tailored action frameworks to operationalize the key recommendations of the Vision 2030 process, including the translation of a global ambition to regional and national priorities.”

The Board also reviewed and made recommendations on the endorsement of Decade Programme submissions received as part of Calls for Decade Actions No.06/2023 and No. 07/2024. These suggestions will be considered by the UNESCO-IOC Executive Secretary in determining the final decision for endorsement, with announcements scheduled for World Oceans Day on 8 June 2024.

The next meeting of the Board is set to take place as a virtual event in September 2024.

Meet the Members of the Ocean Decade Advisory Board


About the Ocean Decade:
Proclaimed in 2017 by the United Nations General Assembly, the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) (‘the Ocean Decade’) seeks to stimulate ocean science and knowledge generation to reverse the decline of the state of the ocean system and catalyse new opportunities for sustainable development of this massive marine ecosystem. The vision of the Ocean Decade is ‘the science we need for the ocean we want’. The Ocean Decade provides a convening framework for scientists and stakeholders from diverse sectors to develop the scientific knowledge and the partnerships needed to accelerate and harness advances in ocean science to achieve a better understanding of the ocean system, and deliver science-based solutions to achieve the 2030 Agenda. The UN General Assembly mandated UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) to coordinate the preparations and implementation of the Decade.

About the UNESCO-IOC:
The Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (UNESCO-IOC) promotes international cooperation in marine sciences to improve management of the ocean, coasts and marine resources. The IOC enables its 150 Member States to work together by coordinating programmes in capacity development, ocean observations and services, ocean science and tsunami warning. The work of the IOC contributes to the mission of UNESCO to promote the advancement of science and its applications to develop knowledge and capacity, key to economic and social progress, the basis of peace and sustainable development.


The Science We Need for the Ocean We Want





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