Grand Challenge III

Improving and achieving sustainable ocean governance

Co-Champions: Derek Armitage, Micaela Trimble and David VanderZwaag

Deputy Co-Champion: Marta Ballesteros

The Challenge: To improve linkages between science, policy and society to mitigate and adapt to global changes, and transition towards sustainable ocean governance. 

Infographic illustrating Grand Challenge III (left), which incorporates results from Grand Challenges I and II to develop the trade-offs, negotiations, communication and engagement mechanisms and decisions within aspects of natural science, social science and humanities research required for ocean sustainability under global change.

Priority research objectives (2022-2025)

  1. Develop knowledge on best practices for multilevel governance approaches to ocean climate adaptation and mitigation
    • How are regions, countries and local communities adapting to shifting marine species and ecosystems and what best adaptive governance practices can be identified?
    • What is the status of scientific and technical knowledge regarding potential marine options for climate mitigation  and what ocean governance responses are needed?
  1. Develop understanding on key ingredients for transformation towards more sustainable, equitable and inclusive governance approaches to fisheries and aquaculture
    • How are key sustainability principles, such as precautionary and ecosystem approaches and social equity, being applied (or not) at regional, national and local levels?
    • What are the major governance constraints?
    • How might law and policy frameworks be improved?
  1. Support implementation of post-2020 biodiversity targets for marine spatial planning, marine protected areas 
    • How are countries and regions proposing to implement the global targets?
    • What are the roles of scientists and stakeholders in identifying and promoting MPAs and other effective area-based conservation measures?
    • Are national laws and policies up to the task of ensuring social equity and justice in new protected and conservation area designations? 
    • Will international and regional organizations and arrangements cooperate in strengthening high seas governance?

Focused activity and outputs of Grand Challenge III

Fact Sheet | Current

Fact Sheet | Previous