Innovation policies for space and oceans

The Ocean Economy and Innovation


The world’s seas and oceans are under increasing pressure, both from a growing range and intensity of economic activities, as well as from climate change. The ocean economy’s long-term potential in terms of growth and job creation cannot be fully realised unless more effective steps are taken to improve integrated ocean management -- including ecosystem preservation -- at local, regional, national and international level. That in turn will require significant progress in innovation and new thinking in many areas – in science, technology, R&D, manufacturing, infrastructural design, consultation and decision-making processes, institutional co-operation, and last but not least, in the policy mix that governments implement to support and encourage innovative capacity in the ocean economy more broadly.


The OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation has launched an original programme of work on the ocean economy and innovation with the objective to provide decision-makers with an improved toolbox to foster innovation for harnessing the ocean economy’s potential in a responsible and sustainable way. This will include new evidence-based information to decision-makers to improve their innovation policy mix for sustainable ocean management.


This will be undertaken through a series of expert workshops, research on new OECD indicators, and innovation policy discussions with ocean-related communities around the world (ministries, agencies, academia, foundations, NGOs and the private sector). The activities are organised around four major themes:

  • Exploring the role of scientific advances and enabling technologies in driving innovation in the ocean economy.
  • Investigating emerging patterns and platforms of collaboration in innovation among different marine and maritime actors in ocean R&D around the world.
  • Extending the frontiers of the use of economic valuation, analysis and tools further into areas of ocean-related activities.
  • Analysing the role of the public sector and the impacts of policy mix in boosting innovation in the ocean economy. 



Conference on New Approaches to Evaluating the Ocean Economy
Paris, 22-23 November 2017

See more ocean economy and innovation news and events on the OECD Innovation Policy Platform



Ocean Economy to 2030

The Ocean Economy in 2030
Summaries available in 25 languages

This report explores the growth prospects for the ocean economy, its capacity for future employment creation and innovation, and its role in addressing global challenges. Special attention is devoted to the emerging ocean-based industries in light of their high growth and innovation potential, and contribution to addressing challenges such as energy security, environment, climate change and food security.

It examines the risks and uncertainties surrounding the future development of ocean industries, the innovations required in science and technology to support their progress, their potential contribution to green growth and some of the implications for ocean management. Finally, and looking across the future ocean economy as a whole, it explores possible avenues for action that could boost its long-term development prospects while managing the use of the ocean itself in responsible, sustainable ways.



 Mrs. Anita Gibson, Project Co-ordinator, OECD Innovation Policies for Space and Oceans (IPSO) Unit,  



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