Virtual Ocean Dialogues

Cologny, Switzerland
1–5 June 2020


2020 Theme: Connecting Communities for Ocean Resilience, Innovation and Action

  • Connecting Communities for Ocean Resilience, Innovation and Action
  • 1-5 June 2020, online
  • Interactive global online event, covering key ocean topics from protection and pollution to data and blue economy
  • Humanity needs a healthy, thriving ocean to protect communities and build resilience

The World Economic Forum and Friends of Ocean Action are hosting a global online conference for ocean action, the Virtual Ocean Dialogues, on 1-5 June 2020. The Virtual Ocean Dialogues will connect communities across the world that are seeking innovation and taking bold action for a healthy, resilient, thriving ocean.

The rapid global spread of COVID-19 is posing unprecedented challenges and uncertainty, with large conferences and gatherings being postponed for reasons of health and safety and with global mobility drastically curtailed. As a result, our way of life and doing business are changing. Yet once beyond this pandemic, the ocean will be one of our greatest allies in economic recovery, food security, jobs and the battle against climate change.

The World Economic Forum and Friends of Ocean Action, a group of 58 global leaders fast-tracking scalable solutions to the most pressing challenges facing the ocean, are curating the Virtual Ocean Dialogues to convene leaders and communities online from across the global ocean space. Designed in collaboration with a range of other partners, the Virtual Ocean Dialogues will maintain momentum in the face of COVID-19 to continue working for ambitious and urgent global action for a healthy ocean.

“During these difficult times, the Virtual Ocean Dialogues are being created in order to maintain positive momentum in global efforts to better protect and manage the resources of the ocean," said Ambassador Peter Thomson, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean, and Co-Chair of Friends of Ocean Action.

"Now more than ever, humanity needs a healthy, thriving ocean to protect our communities and build resilience against future crises."

In accord with the global effort to overcome the spread of COVID-19, the dates of the 2020 UN Ocean Conference are in the process of being rescheduled. The conference was to have been held in the first week of June. In the meantime, the 1-5 June date for the Virtual Ocean Dialogues has been chosen to maintain global momentum in support of action to safeguard the well-being of the ocean.

The Virtual Ocean Dialogues will focus on bringing to light ambitious and inspiring solutions, as well as tangible opportunities for positive change.

The Virtual Ocean Dialogues will cover the following priority topics:

  • Setting the stage for ocean action
  • Finance and the sustainable blue economy
  • Launching UpLink – new digital crowdsourcing platform for ocean innovation
  • Stemming the pollution tide
  • Global priorities for ocean protection
  • The high seas: operating within the global commons
  • Feeding billions
  • Sustainable ocean economy
  • A digital ocean: data and science
  • Strengthening ocean and community resilience to climate change
  • Beyond the ocean
  • Communities taking ocean action

Registration details are on the homepage. For more information about the Dialogues please visit the Programme section. Speakers will be added as they are confirmed.

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