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Marine Directors meet with EU Commissioner Vella to discuss EMB perspectives on the future of marine research in Europe
From left to right: Andras Inotai (Commissioner Vella’s private office); Andreea Strachinescu (DG RTD - Maritime Innovation, Marine Knowledge and Investment); Bernhard Friess (DG MARE - Director of Maritime Police and Blue Economy); Vasileios Lykousis (Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, Greece); Gilles Lericolais (French Institute for the exploitation of the Sea, France); Ferdinando Boero (National Inter-University Consortium for Marine Sciences, Italy); Sheila JJ Heymans (European Marine Board); Peter Herzig (German Marine Research Consortium (KDM), Germany); Karmenu Vella (EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries); Jan Mees (Research Foundation Flanders, Belgium); Karin Kroon Boxaspen (Institute of Marine Research, Norway); Robert Precali (Ruder Boskovic Institute, Croatia); Carlos Garcia-Soto (Spanish Institute for Oceanography, Spain); Mark James (Marine Alliance for Science & Technology for Scotland, UK); Peter Heffernan (Marine Institute, Ireland); Yves-Marie Paulet (Marine Universities of France, France); Kate Larkin (European Marine Board); Jan Marcin Weslawski (Institute of Oceanology - Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland)

Not in picture: John Bell and Sieglinde Gruber from DG RTD

On Tuesday 10 July 2018, research directors from European Marine Board Member organisations met with Karmenu Vella,  EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, to discuss their perspectives on the future of marine research in Europe.

Commissioner Vella noted that he was keen to hear the EMB members perspectives and scientific views on future priorities and that this is an excellent opportunity for the commission to listen what the research community has to say. This meeting marks the third in a series of round table discussions between Commissioner Vella and EMB member organisations. More information on the previous 2 meetings, which took place on 2 March 2016 and on 8 July 2016 can be found on the EMB and the Commission website. EMB is grateful to enable this excellent platform to communicate directly with policy makers on ocean research issues.

At this third meeting, representatives from European Marine Board Member Organizations; the EMB Secretariat and the European Commission DG Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, and DG Research and Innovation discussed the progresses on Ocean Observation (EOOS), its economic benefits and how to move forward, e.g. by developing applications from ocean observing; as well as the different perspective and potential scientific action points regarding Food from the Oceans.

One of the key questions was how to bring science closer to the markets. The Commission highlighted that it would be beneficial to take science and research a step further to an application approach, and come up with concrete actions to connect ocean science to the market.

Further, ideas were discussed on the Horizon Europe programme and an Ocean Mission; and how this could be aligned with the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development. It was noted that there is broad support form the marine science community for the Decade of Ocean Science, and that the European Marine Board will make this a key topic at the EurOCEAN 2019 Conference to be organised in Spring 2019.

As the European Marine Board was identified as a key marine stakeholder for the Horizon Europe planning, a follow-up meeting will be planned in Autumn 2018 to discuss this topic more in depth.

The full agenda and the discussed presentations are available on the Commission website.


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