The 3rd Blue Society Expert Group (BSEG) meeting took place recently in Paris. Invited experts, members of the Sea for Society BSEG came together at Maison des Oceans in Paris to further work on defining the meaing of a Blue Society.
The aim of the final Blue Society Expert Group meeting, held on 22 September, was to reflect on key challenges to effective ocean governance and identify gaps in EU marine research. Insights gained during the meeting will help to develop Blue Society Concept Note, which outlines the vision for a Blue Society and recommendations for making it a reality.
Following brief introductory presentations by IUCN, experts were led into an open, interactive discussion concerning current deficiencies in EU ocean governance, and possible policy recommendations which could be presented to the European Commission. Experts particularly highlighted the need to strengthen the knowledge base for effective ocean governance; promote interdisciplinary cooperation and marine research and integrate missing disciplines (e.g. social sciences) into existing marine research institutions; boost research on policy instruments such as integrated coastal management and maritime spatial planning; and promote collaboration and partnerships between policy, science and the private sector. Experts also emphasised the need to integrate marine topics into education programmes across Europe.
The meeting provided a valuable opportunity to exchange with members of the group with expertise in marine science/planning, international marine governance, fisheries, marine research policy, marine protected areas management and sustainable development, and helped sparked new ideas and inspiration to develop the Blue Society Concept note.
The final concept note, which outlines the vision of a Blue Society, and recommendations for making it a reality, will be presented at the Blue Society Launch Event on 18 November.
Among the participants of the 3rd BSEG were:
Lara Bazari - CEO of Kefalonia Fisheries S.A, Greece
Maurizio Würtz - Professor Emeritus (University of Genoa), Italy
Puri Canals - Freelance Marine Consultant, Italy
Yves Henocque - Scientist, IFREMER Maritime Strategy Senior Advisor, France
Telmo Carvalho - Director, Office of Ocean Affairs, Fundação de Ciência e Tecnologia, Portugal.
Eelco Leemans - Consultant on sustainable development in the Maritime sector (Former Director of North Sea Foundation, The Netherlands)
Juliette Kowalski - Nausicaá
Pauline Lang - Nausicaá
Francois Simard - IUCN
Helen Klimmek - IUCN
Pierre-Yves Cousteau - IUCN