2nd Training Programme on Ocean Governance, Ocean Sciences and GeoEthics
(Valparaiso, Chile, 8th January - 2nd February 2018)
6th Training Programme on the Sustainable Development and Governance of the Caspian Sea, Turkmenbashi, Turkmenistan Organised by the IOI and the State Enterprise on Caspian Sea Issues at the President of Turkmenistan
(5th - 16th March 2018)
Prof Alan Deidun (Director, IOI Malta Training Centre) designated as Ocean Ambassador for Malta
Alan Deidun (Director, IOI Malta Training Centre) has been appointed Ocean Ambassador for Malta for the United Nations' 2021-2030 decade of ocean science for sustainable development. Prof. Deidun was recommended for the role by Malta’s Environment Minister José Herrera and appointed by Malta’s Foreign Minister Carmelo Abela. In his role as ambassador, Prof Deidun will be responsible for spearheading local initiatives related to ocean science and UN objectives for sustainable development.
Our congratulations go to Prof Deidun, as well as our best wishes for his success in bringing fresh attention and importance to ocean issues in his new role.
IOI delegation at the WMU-Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute inauguration
(Malmo, Sweden, 8th May 2018)
Mr Peter Leder (Treasurer, IOI Governing Board) and Ms Antonella Vassallo took part in the “Building Transformative Partnerships for Oceans Sustainability” Seminar organised in parallel with the official inauguration of the WMU-Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute on the 8th May in Malmo, Sweden. The new Institute will act as an independent focal point for ocean related dialogue and capacity-building, while also bringing to life a convergence platform where policy makers, the scientific community, regulators, industry actors, academics, and representatives of civil society can meet to discuss how best to manage and use ocean spaces and their resources for the sustainable development of present and future generations.
IOI was invited to participate in Panel Six on Civil Society where Mr Peter Leder stressed the importance of building transformative partnerships in order to deliver on the ocean related goals under the Agenda 2030. He emphasised that due attention should be focused on the issues faced by the oceans and marine sectors that are not currently adequately addressed.
Seminar on the Blue Economy “Living with the Ocean and from the Ocean in a Sustainable Relationship"
(Gozo, Malta, 19th May 2018)
The seminar organised in partnership with the Ministry for Gozo, the International Ocean Institute, Institute of Earth Systems and the University of Malta explored the concept of the Blue Economy and its potential to increase the long-term benefits of the sustainable use of marine resources. It addressed the different aspects of the Blue Economy and how the concept can be understood in its macro and micro dimensions, taking into account its original concepts and their regional and national reinterpretation, with emphasis on its importance to islands and their special vulnerabilities.
The Hon Dr Justyne Caruana, Minister for Gozo, opened the event, which was moderated by Prof Louis F. Cassar (Institute of Earth Systems, University of Malta and Governor of the IOI). The panellists consisted of Dr Awni Behnam who delivered a keynote speech entitled “The Blue Economy: Fifty Shades of Blue”; Mr Bonapas Onguglo (Head, Trade Analysis Branch, UN Convention on Trade and Development - UNCTAD, Geneva) presented on “National and Regional Blue Economy Strategies”; Dr Stefano Moncada (Lecturer, Institute for European Studies; board member, Islands and Small States Institute, University of Malta) elaborated on “Vulnerabilities of Islands and the Blue Economy”; and Ms Vicky Xuereb (Director, EcoGozo Regional Development Directorate, Ministry for Gozo) gave a presentation entitled “Achieving a Blue Economy on Gozo: Case Studies and experiences from the ECO-Gozo Project”.
The seminar concluded successfully with a lively question and answer session and a panel discussion.
“Your Ocean Your Future” - Mario Ruivo Tribute Event
(Brussels, Belgium, 6th June 2018)
A day-long event was organised by EurOcean at the Centre of Fine Arts in Brussels on the 6th of June in order to commemorate the lasting legacy of Professor Mario Ruivo. Professor Ruivo (1927-2017) was among those who supported the IOI from the early days of its founding by Professor Mann Borgese, to whom he provided friendly advice and support. This support continued through the years during his tenure as Member of the IOI Governing Board from 2005 - 2012.
Long-time IOI friends and colleagues of his, Dr Awni Behnam and Dr Iouri Oliounine (former IOI Executive Director, and Member, IOI Governing Board) delivered presentations during the event while Ms Antonella Vassallo moderated the second panel of speakers who explored the future of ocean matters, building on Professor Mario Ruivo’s legacy.
The speakers present acknowledged not only Mario Ruivo’s legacy as a true champion of the ocean, but also his invaluable contribution to the IOI over the years. IOI remains deeply appreciative of Professor Mario Ruivo’s efforts in bringing the oceans to the forefront of the scientific, political and human agenda and of his keen support to the Institute over the years.
IOI Participation in the 19th Meeting of the UN Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea
(New York, 18th - 22nd June 2018)
An IOI delegation comprised of Dr Awni Behnam (IOI Honorary President), Ms Antonella Vassallo (IOI Managing Director) and Ms Liliana Rodriguez Cortes participated in the nineteenth meeting of the UN Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (ICP19) convened at the UN Headquarters in New York. The meeting brought together representatives from governments, intergovernmental organisations, non-governmental organisations, and academic institutions to examine the topic of: “Anthropogenic underwater noise.”
Key issues covered during the meeting included discussions on:
Meeting with the Executive Secretary of the Group of 77
On the occasion of the nineteenth session of the ICP, the IOI delegation met with the Executive Secretary of the Group of 77 Dr Mourad Ahmia who expressed his recognition of the long standing and valuable contribution of IOI in capacity building for developing countries to meet current and future ocean challenges. He referred to the importance of the forthcoming negotiations on marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction and the need for capacity development in the follow up process and the role IOI should play.
The Honorary President of IOI, was invited to give a presentation to the UN Nippon Foundation Fellows of 2018
During his visit to New York, Dr Awni Behnam was also invited by the representatives of UN DOALOS to speak to the 2018 group of Nippon Fellows. Dr Behnam gave a presentation on Maritime Transport and Seaborne Trade, giving a brief history of the development of maritime law as well as touching on the biggest challenges currently being faced. The Fellows provided very positive feedback on the presentation and appreciated, in particular, the information shared by Dr Behnam based not only on his long-standing experience and insight on maritime transport, but also on the negotiations leading to the adoption of UNCLOS and the development of the Law of the Sea in general.