With the aim of promoting the development and application of digital twin ocean technologies, the DITTO Summit 2023 (International Digital Twins of the Ocean Summit) was held in Xiamen, China, from 9 to 12 November 2023. The Summit gathered 450 renowned experts, scholars and industry representatives from 19 countries and regions to discuss supporting ocean protection, enhancing ocean governance, and fostering a sustainable ocean economy. It was the occasion to make an exciting announcement – the launch of the ECOP China node.
During the Summit an Early Career Ocean Professional (ECOP) workshop was co-organized by the DITTO organizing committee and the ECOP China coordination team (led by Dr. Yuntao Wang) in order to gather the power of young-generation Chinese marine scientists. The workshop was held on 9 November with ECOP representatives across regions and ocean-related sectors present. It was a special moment that included the ECOP National Node of China launching ceremony.
Dr. Baolan from ECOP China and Dr. Jae-Hyoung Park from ECOP Korea co-chaired the event, screening introduction videos from the ECOP Programme featuring global coordinator Evgeniia Kostianaia and Asia coordinator Raphael Roman. Dr. Martin Visbeck joined in person as a guest speaker and encouraged the audience to participate in devoting their wisdoms to the digital twins ocean technologies, make their voices heard and engage in the ECOP Programme. Presenters from China, Korea and Thailand showed their research about leveraging numerical simulations and DITTO in monitoring and climate change. Together with Jae-Hyoung Park’s introduction of ECOP Korea node, Dr. Lin Wang introduced the initial stages of ECOP Programme, and Chunhua Jiang showed the timeline of her internship at the ECOP Programme. As ECOP China coordinator she presented the development and prospects of the ECOP China node, and called for new participants, executive committee members and new national coordinators.
A lively roundtable discussion followed, covering the topic of how ECOPs can contribute to certain UN Ocean Decade Outcomes. Four groups of participants chose four Ocean Decade Outcomes and using insights from their own scientific research discussed how they can play a more active role in promoting the sustainable development of the global oceans.
With this meaningful network created, new members joined the ECOP China WeChat group as well as the global registry. Through the launch of the ECOP China node, Chinese ECOPs will be connected to a broader platform, and have access to career development opportunities, as well as be able to contribute to the development of the UN Ocean Decade through the Programme.