Latest News and Upcoming Events



NEW COURSE DATES: 24th September – 19th November 2018


The OCEANMOOC will begin on September 24, 2018. ENROLL TODAY on


Is the ocean the real final frontier? Humans have a greater understanding of the surface of the moon than they do of the depths of our ocean. But what we know of the ocean proves it hosts a wealth of opportunity – connecting the world; supporting important and basic economic, cultural and environmental functions – despite being under significant threat. Stressed by unsustainable lifestyles and the increasing demands of a growing global population, how do we become good stewards of this massive natural resource?

In the massive open online course One Planet – One Ocean: From Science to Solutions, learn from the world's leading experts on ocean science. They will present the issues and potential solutions – grounded in rigorous scientific research – to fight for our endangered waters.

This Massive Open Online Course was broadcast in 2016 and 2017, attracting over 6500 participants from 62 countries! It provides you a knowledge base that brings to you to the science and fascination of the ocean. Marine scientists team with economists, lawyers and philosophers to bring you a holistic view of how the ocean functions, how human interactions with the ocean can be understood, and what solutions are available to support both sustainable use and stewardship of our blue planet.






The 2nd Ocean Forum was co-organised by United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), UN Environment, the Commonwealth Secretariat, the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP Group), the IOI, the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), with the shared goal of providing a healthy and sustainable ocean. To reach this goal and achieve SDG14 targets, novel integrated and cross-sectoral approaches are needed, along with sound ocean governance and policy coherence at all levels. 


The main aim of the Second Oceans Forum was to identify challenges and opportunities related to the sustainability and integration of the seafood value chain within the framework of the oceans/blue economy. The Forum provided a stage for presenting analytical reports, individual country experiences and opportunities for exploring public and private best practices. The Forum proved to be a well-timed opportunity for Member States and other stakeholders to display their views on numerous trade-centric aspects of SDG14.


The IOI (a partner of this forum) was represented in Geneva by Awni Behnam (IOI Honorary President), Alan Deidun (IOI Malta Training Centre Director), Mahin Faghfouri (Vice-President of IOI Governing Board), Azmath Jaleel, Peter Leder (IOI Governor), Behzad Alipour Tehrany and Antonella Vassallo (IOI Managing Director). 


A detailed report is available on the IOInforma News Bulletin 0418.





The 8th June has been designated as World Oceans Day (WOD) by the United Nations following paragraph 171 of its resolution 63/111 on Oceans and the Law of the Sea. The theme of World Oceans Day is selected on an annual basis to reflect an issue of importance. The theme of this year’s celebrations was “Clean our Ocean”.


The IOI joined the rest of the ocean community in celebrating World Oceans Day and, as usual, the global IOI network of centres responded enthusiastically to the invitation to commemorate this day by organising a diverse range of scientific, social and cultural activities. Thanks go to all the contributors for the organisation of events and for supplying photos. Please read on to see how World Oceans Day was celebrated by the IOI network worldwide. All photos courtesy of IOI Centres and Focal Points.


As we individually or collectively celebrate World Oceans Day, all our activities are inspired by what Elisabeth Mann Borgese wrote: 


“The ocean is the real thing, covering almost three-quarters of the surface of our blue planet; the continents are islands floating on the world ocean; the ocean links and unites the continents, rather than separating them and isolating them. The world ocean is our common heritage”.

 (Mann Borgese, E: The Oceanic Circle: Governing the Seas as a Global Resource; United Nations University Press; pub 1998; 346pp; ISBN-13: 978-92-808-1028-8)


To see how World Oceans Day was celebrated by the IOI network worldwide kindly click on the IOInforma News Bulletin series (0418) in the Archives section (Documents & Publications); reports of the WOD events held each year are included.


On the 14th of June Dr Awni Behnam (IOI Honorary President) was appointed as Affiliate Professor with the Department of Geosciences within the Faculty of Science at the University of Malta. This further consolidates IOI’s academic contribution to the annual IOI programmes (MA in Ocean governance and the Malta Training Programme) offered by the University of Malta. 



The 2018-2019 Bursary will be awarded to one person/research team carrying out postgraduate studies/research in ocean/marine/maritime related studies at the University of Malta.  Staff or students are to be registered with the University of Malta where research in the relevant fields is carried out.


For more information as well as the application form/guidelines kindly click here.


The official application deadline is the 28th July 2018.

  • Forum on Fisheries Science in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea (Fish Forum 2018) - CALL FOR ABSTRACTS 



The Fish Forum 2018, in which IOI is a  technical partner,  gives participants the opportunity to submit abstracts in relation to three thematic sessions. All abstracts submitted for the different sessions will be evaluated by the International Scientific Committee (ISC).


The criteria for the assessment of abstracts will be based on the technical quality of the documents and relevance to the topics. The ISC will select the abstracts that will be published in a book of abstracts before the start of the Fish Forum 2018. You are invited to visit and submit your abstract for one of the three thematic sessions.


  • "Spot the Jellyfish" and "Spot the Alien Fish" - LAUNCH of Apps and other campaign activities 

Two smartphone apps were recently launched for the Spot the Jellyfish and the Spot the Alien Fish campaigns. The apps take these two citizen science campaigns to a new level by allowing users to report sightings of jellyfish and of alien (non-indigenous) fish in local waters, as well as to view information on specific species and background information on the campaigns.


The apps were developed by students from the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST) as part of their final year projects, and in collaboration with Prof Alan Deidun (IOI Malta Training Centre Director) from the University of Malta’s Department of Geosciences, who coordinates the campaigns.


The first version of the apps is already available on   the Google Play platform and will be available soon on the Apple App Store. The final versions of the apps are expected to be released in the coming weeks after they are fine-tuned by the developers.


More campaign initiatives are planned for the coming months, including the publication of a manual on alien fish species found in Maltese waters. The campaigns are funded by the International Ocean Institute (IOI), the Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) and the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA).


As part of its citizen science and ocean literacy outreach, the campaigns encourage the public to send in their jellyfish and alien fish reports or sightings through the campaign websites below, via social media pages or by e-mail.


Email: aliensmalta(@)


The International Ocean Institute (IOI), on the recommendation of the IOI Board of Governors, has reached its aim of making the Ocean Yearbook contents more widely available as free or low-cost online access to readers in developing economy countries.


Following coordination by the IOI HQ, the Ocean Yearbook publishers – BRILL - and the Ocean Yearbook editors, we are pleased to announce that the Ocean Yearbook will be part of a new Research4Life program launched in early 2018. This will result in the provision of online access to academic legal content in developing economy countries. Researchers, librarians, policy-makers, judges and legal experts from more than 115 low- and middle-income countries will receive free or low-cost online access to law and law-related academic and professional peer-reviewed content through their institutions. Access will be provided by a new program, Global Online Access to Legal Information (GOALI), a multi-stakeholder initiative of the Research4Life partnership.


Eligible parties  can access the Ocean Yearbook FOR FREE at this link: 

 Additional details are available online:

The IOI’s Ocean Yearbook publication is published by Brill Nijhoff in cooperation with the Marine & Environmental Law Institute, Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada. Articles on issues and prospects, ocean governance, living resources of the ocean, non-living ocean resources, transportation and communications, environment and coastal management, maritime security, military activities, regional developments, training and education, and ocean polar issues will be considered for Volume 33. Submission deadline is 31st March 2018.

The Ocean Yearbook Student Prize is an annual competition open to students writing research papers on marine affairs subjects at any university or other tertiary education institution. The paper of the 2018 Ocean Yearbook Student Prize winner will be offered publication acceptance in Volume 33, to be published in 2019. Deadline for submissions is the end of the business day on 13 May 2018, with results being announced by 16 July 2018.



The Course Brochure and application form for IOI-South Africa's 2018 training programme can be downloaded from the Training section of the website: Any queries and expressions of interest may be addressed to: Mr. Adnan Awad, Director, IOI South Africa on e-mail: awad.adnan(at)


The official application deadline is the 13th April 2018.

The IOI hereby invites applications/nominations for the 2018 Danielle de St. Jorre Scholarship. Further information on the Scholarship as well as the application form and explanatory notes may be either requested/obtained by sending an email to: Madeleine Coffen-Smout, Programme Officer, IOI Canada on e-mail: ioi(at)


The deadline for receipt of applications is 9th February 2018.

BERLIN, November, 16th, 2017: "World Ocean Review 5" has been launched. The fifth World Ocean Review (WOR 5) explores the coastal habitat and the diverse expectations upon this habitat. It provides a glimpse into millions of years of history, elucidates the theory of continental drift and discusses the many ways in which coasts have changed. It also illustrates how the diverse ecosystem services rendered by the coasts are being subjected to increasing pressure, and profiles measures that will be necessary in the future to respond effectively to the threats from both climate change and natural disasters.


More information can be found under the Publications section.



The 2018 training programme on Ocean Governance: Policy, Law and Management is scheduled to be held from the 23rd May to 20th July 2018 (subject to final confirmation).


In order to obtain an application form kindly click here.


The official application deadline is the 5th January 2018.

The International Ocean Institute (IOI), established in 1972 and head-quartered in the premises of the University of Malta, decided, through unanimous decision of the Board of Governors, to confer on Professor Alfred J. Vella - Rector, University of Malta - the IOI’s Elisabeth Mann Borgese Medal in recognition of his invaluable support of the IOI and its capacity development, education and training programmes offered in Malta.


The award ceremony was held at the Valletta Campus of the University of Malta on Friday 10th November at 17.00hrs for a maximum duration of an hour. Present at the ceremony were Dr Awni Behnam, Honorary President of the IOI; the Registrar, and the Pro-Rectors of the University of Malta; Ambassador Simone Borg and Professor Louis F. Cassar, IOI Governors; Ms Antonella Vassallo, Managing Director of IOI HQ; and Professor Alan Deidun, Director of the IOI-Malta Training Centre. The celebration was also attended by current beneficiaries of ocean governance training in Malta following the IOI Training Programme on Regional Ocean Governance for the Mediterranean, Black, Baltic and Caspian Seas, and the students following the M.A. Degree in Ocean Governance offered jointly by the Faculty of Laws at the University of Malta and the IOI.


More information can be seen on the University of Malta website here.



The 2nd IOI Training Programme on Ocean Governance, Ocean Sciences and Geoethics is scheduled to be held in Valparaiso, Chile from the 8th January to the 2nd February 2018.


Pre-registration is now open. The form may be obtained by clicking on the website here. The deadline for registration is the 15th November 2017.



Please visit the website

Are you a professional, student, educator or citizen who aspires to use knowledge for better stewardship of our ocean? Yes? Then ENROLL NOW and explore this last great frontier on Earth. Together we can make a difference – gather friends and colleagues and JOIN TODAY!


In this era of globalization and sectoral integration, capacity building in ocean governance plays a pivotal role in ensuring safe and healthy oceans for the benefit of humankind and the planet. Additionally, obligations towards achieving the SDGs, notably SDG14 and its targets, and other intersecting SDGs, place a burden of responsibility on States and institutions which may benefit from targeted capacity development and training opportunities for their staff.

IOI-SA cares about empowering all sectors of the population with knowledge about the marine environment including the young ocean ambassadors. They have developed a (digital) booklet of games that are available as PDFs on the IOI-SA Kids website.