Ocean and Coastal Governance for Sustainability Training Course at the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research, Bremen

From 5. November 2018

Photo by: Peter Prokosch / GRID-Arendal

From November 29th to December 1st, the International Ocean Institute (IOI) and the ZMT (Anna-Katharina Hornidge, Werner Ekau, Achim Schlüter) are jointly organising a training course on the topic of ocean and coastal governance in Bremen and Hamburg.

Registration deadline: November 10th, 2018

Course Description

The ocean and its ecosystems are of highest socio-economic importance for humanity. Besides space for navigation and trade (roughly 10 billion tons of commodities are transported across the oceans), the provision of biological resources is the most important service of the marine ecosystems. Yet, these ecosystems are increasingly impeded by human activities and interventions. Urbanisation and population growth at the coast goes along with severe levels of pollution stressing coastal environments and hampering or interrupting life cycles of species and the well established and naturally balanced internal interconnections within and between ecosystems. The result is a decline in ecosystem services and a negative feedback into the socio-economic systems.

This negative retroaction is specifically true for many tropical countries, where an integrated coastal management is hampered by insufficient enforcement of and lack of informal support of formal regulations. However, governance of tropical coastal ecosystems, resources and societies cannot be treated as a local or national challenge. Fish and Seafood is one of the most traded food commodities in the world and some 38 % of world production enters international trade, of which more than half originates from developing countries. The net trade income for developing countries (export – import) from this source is valued at US$ 36 billion in 2016, much greater than all other agricultural commodities combined. Around 58 million people are directly engaged in fisheries, another 200 million indirectly. The need for a sustainable management of these coastal resources is obvious!

Although the term ‘sustainability’ originates from forestry and was introduced into fisheries in the early 20th century focussing on single biological species, it today comprises a very holistic view of principles including three main pillars with ecological, economic and social aspects encompassing the whole ecosystem. The implementation of sustainable management of resources and coastal areas, that considers all three pillars, requires a strong effort in tropical coastal countries to build human and infrastructure capacity at individual and institutional level as well as in management systems and governance structures.

The three day training course is intended to make participants familiar with basic principles of ecological, economic and social sustainability, introduce examples for sustainable management and deepen the understanding by means of intensive exercises in ecological/resource, economic and governance approaches for sustainability. Each thematic block will be opened by two expert lectures, introducing the participants to some of the ongoing challenges in the field. These challenges will then be jointly addressed in group exercises and discussions, allowing for substantial time to interact and reflect some of the proposed solutions for addressing the challenges by drawing on the regionally and disciplinarily diverse experiences in the room.


Places are limited, so please register until November 10th. In case of questions regarding the registration you can contact Janine Reinhard (janine.reinhard [a] leibniz-zmt.de).