A  web·guide to sustainable development, conservation & the glocal environment



International organizations (non-UN)

International Union for the Conservation of Nature & Natural Resources (IUCN)

     · Marine and Polar page

World Fish Centre

International initiatives & networks

Earth System Governance Task Force on Ocean Governance

Global Ocean Biodiversity Initiative (GOBI)

Global Ocean Commission

     · A 2013-16 initiative to raise awareness for the degradation of the oceans; see Wikipedia entry.

Global Ocean Forum

Global Programme for Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Sources

High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy

Independent World Commission on the Oceans (IWCO)

     · 1995-1999; see UIA-GCSD entry

     · Produced the report: The Ocean, Our Future

International Association of Classification Societies (IACS)

     · “A Dedicated to safe ships and clean seas, IACS makes a unique contribution to maritime safety

       and regulation through technical support, compliance verification and research and development.

       More than 90% of the world's cargo carrying tonnage is covered by the classification design,

       construction and through-life compliance rules and standards set by the eleven Member Societies

       of IACS.”

International Programme on the State of the Ocean (IPSO)

     · “an initiative created to enable a greater scientific understanding of the services the ocean provides to humankind and the impact of

     the main human stressors upon it, enabling solutions to be explored and greater communication with decision-makers and the public.

     To that end, the initiative brings together science, communications, policy and legal disciplines."

Monaco Blue Initiative

Ocean Project

     · "...advances conservation in partnership with aquariums, zoos, museums, youth, and many others in our growing network worldwide.

     Since 2002, The Ocean Project has also been the global leader for coordinating and growing World Oceans Day."

     · Vision: "A healthy ocean and sustainable and civically-engaged society."

Taskforce on Ocean Governance

Research institutions

Benioff Ocean Initiative

Center for Coastal Studies

Center for the Blue Economy @ Middlebury

Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research (CLEAR)

    · "...a feminist, anti-colonial, marine science laboratory. This means our methods foreground

     values of equity, humility, and justice. We specialize in community-based and citizen science

     monitoring of plastic pollution, particularly of plastics in food webs.

Institute for Ocean Conservation Science

Flanders Marine Institute

Marine Science Institute @ UCSB

MIT SeaGrant

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI)

National Center for Integrated Coastal Research

Nereus Program

Ocean Nexus Center @ School of Marine & Environmental Affairs, College of the Environment, University of Washington

Ocean Visions

Shirshov Institute of Oceanology of Russian Academy of Sciences

Professional societies

American Bureau of Shipping

American Fisheries Society

International Game Fish Association

Private sector ~ Industry associations & initiatives

National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA)

Our Oceans Challenge

     · Private sector initiative of ~2014-15; website defunct as of 2023, but see UNDESA description

Private sector ~ Consultancies

Marine Environmental Research (MER) [Cypress]

Grantmaking foundations

Marine Conservation Initiative @ Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation


Monterey Bay Aquarium

National Aquarium [Baltimore, Maryland, USA]

New England Aquarium


Blue Frontier

Blue Marine Foundation

     · a small NGO that attempts to solve the crisis in the ocean by establishing marine reserves; has many international projects

Blue Ventures

Blue Water Metrics

Center for Coastal Studies

     · From mission statement: "To conduct scientific research with emphasis on marine mammals of the western North Atlantic and on the

     coastal and marine habitats and resources of the Gulf of Maine..."

Center for Oceanic Awareness, Research and Education (COARE)

Coastal Care

     · Hosts the site

Coastal Marine Education and Research Academy (CMERA)

Deep Sea Conservation Coalition

Diving with a Purpose (DWP)

Environmental Defense Fund


Environmental Justice Foundation


     · learn more about their ocean campaign through topics such as overfishing, marine biodiversity, and illegal fishing

Global Fishing Watch

     · "...promoting ocean sustainability through greater transparency. We use cutting-edge technology

     to visualise, track and share data about global fishing activity in near real-time and for free."

Global Maritime Forum

International Seafood Sustainability Foundation

Marine Conservation Institute

     · Works with "scientists, politicians, government officials and other organizations to build

     workable solutions to pressing ocean issues." They are working "to enhance marine protection

     efforts in the U.S. and around the globe."

Marine Conservation Science Institute

     · A nonprofit organization that is committed to promote issues within marine biology and fisheries.

     It is involved in "research projects around the globe dedicated to protecting and conserving marine resources."

Marine Defenders

Marine Stewardship Council

Marine & Environmental Research Institute

    · This is a nonprofit scientific organization dealing with marine wildlife exposure to toxins, marine coastal monitoring, oil spill

          recovery, and plastics and micro plastics

Mission Blue: Sylvia Earle Alliance

Nature Conservancy

     · Oceans

     · works to provide food sustainability, build coastal resilience, and protect the oceans

North American Native Fishes Association

Ocean Agency


Ocean Alliance

Ocean Conservancy

Ocean First Institute

Ocean Foundation

     · Formerly the Coral Reef Foundation

Ocean Guardian

Ocean Recovery Alliance

Ocean River Institute

Ocean Unite

Ocean Wise

     · learn about the plastic waste in our oceans, and take a pledge to reduce plastic consumption


Oceanic Defense

Oceanic Preservation Society

Oceano Azul Foundation


Open Communications for the Ocean

Project AWARE

     · "...a global movement for ocean protection powered by a community of adventurers. We connect the passion for ocean adventure with

     the purpose of marine conservation."

Sea Shepherd

     · a non-profit organization that works to end habitat destruction and preserve wildlife biodiversity


Seas At Risk

     · " umbrella organisation of environmental NGOs from across Europe that promotes ambitious

     policies for marine protection at European and international level."

Seaside Sustainability

     · "...composed of a small, dedicated, and streamlined staff with over 185 years of combined experience in the fields of Biology,

     Science, Engineering, Backcountry Medicine, Training and Development, Business Entrepreneurship, and Experiential Education. 

     Unified by our shared passions for engagement with the natural world, we inspire citizens to ask questions, challenge assumptions,

     and draw their own conclusions."

Smithsonian Ocean

Surfrider Foundation

Trout Unlimited

Urban Ocean Lab

World Fish Migration Foundation

World Fisheries Trust

World Ocean Observatory

     · "a major utility for ocean communication as a means to advance public awareness and political will, and is dedicated to

          providing information and education about the health of the ocean."

· This page lists a vast of institutions devoted to the marine environment. UN-related institutions

   for the oceans, including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), are on the

   United Nations Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) & UN agencies subpage.

Contents of this page:

      · International organizations (non-UN)

        · International initiatives & networks

            · Research institutions

              · Professional associations

                · Private sector

                       ~ Industry initiatives

                       ~ Industry consultancies

                  · Grantmaking foundations

                    · Aquaria

                      · NGOs


     · United Nations Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) & UN agencies

Also see:

     · Fisheries institutions

       · Climate change & oceans

         · Plastic pollution

           · USA Marine issues

             · GeoGuide for Region-specific marine institutions

               · Country-by-country, A>Z for country-specific marine instutions

Marine institutions