New interdisciplinary research group studies responses and solutions to ocean-related societal issues.
The Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS) at the University of Wollongong (UOW) has joined a research partnership with The Nippon Foundation Ocean Nexus Center, a new interdisciplinary research group that studies changes, responses and solutions to societal issues that emerge in relationship with the oceans.
The Ocean Nexus Center will be housed in the University of Washington’s EarthLab, and will coordinate a US$32.5 million 10-year research program with partners from universities from around the world. Topics cover a range of issues including ocean acidification adaptation, sustainable development of oceans, ocean sovereignty for island nations, and gender in ocean governance.
ANCORS is proud to be a member of this innovative and socially focused research program. The ANCORS Ocean Nexus Program comprises an ANCORS Ocean Nexus Chair, a post-doctoral research fellow, two PhD students, and a team of research fellows.
The ANCORS Ocean Nexus research program sits at the interface between science, policy, law, and development studies.
Its studies will directly address key challenges to achieving equitable outcomes in transboundary ocean conservation, governance and development.
Its research will focus on two linked themes: Ocean Science, Technology, Knowledge and Capacity; and Collective Strategies and Decision Frameworks.
Associate Professor Quentin Hanich (pictured above), ANCORS Ocean Nexus Chair in Fisheries Governance, will lead the ANCORS Ocean Nexus program.
“Our research theme offers a unifying focus for transformative research to address equitable management challenges by analysing potential solutions and their likely equity impacts, and fostering collective strategies and participation, science-based approaches and stewardship,” Professor Hanich said.
Researchers already know that environmental changes, such as pollution and ocean acidification, can cause health and economic impacts on communities. But scientists and decision-makers still do not have all of the information to implement solutions that take into account those most in need.
“Ocean Nexus exists to bridge the gap between decision makers, policy makers and the communities most affected and dependent on the oceans,” said Yoshitaka Ota, the Centre’s director and a research assistant professor in UW School of Marine and Environmental Affairs.
“This is a chance to do something bold and really push the boundaries of understanding our relationship with oceans, and that’s what I’m excited to do.”
Based on the philosophy of passing on sustainable oceans to future generations, The Nippon Foundation of Tokyo has been working for more than three decades with governments, international organisations, nongovernmental organisations and research institutions to foster 1,430 ocean professionals from 150 countries.
“The sustenance of humanity depends on our mother ocean,” said Yohei Sasakawa, chairman of The Nippon Foundation. “I am excited that the next generation of thought leaders will be emerging from this centre to share their research findings to guide the world toward ocean sustainability.”