“The sea, the great unifier, is man’s only hope. Now, as never before, the old phrase has a literal meaning: we’re all in the same boat.”
So summed up legendary French scientist, Jacques Cousteau, an early proponent of the health of our oceans who also once bemoaned that the vast bodies of water covering more than 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface serve as, “…the universal sewer.”
Opportunities abound for those who care for blue
It’s the sheer immensity of the oceans around the world that allows them to house more than 90 per cent of the species on the planet, while hiding thousands of these species from discovery. With this vast unknown, it’s clear that proper protection and management of the world’s oceans can offer all countries the chance to benefit from the abundance available, a term known as the Blue Economy and the topic of a free, five-week online course.
“Whether you live in a landlocked or coastal nation, the benefits of developing and maintaining a sustainable Blue Economy for your country are significant,” says Kelly Hoareau, Director of the James Michel Blue Economy Research Institute at University of Seychelles (UniSey) and instructor of the course.
Focus on practical learning and application
As an active participant in developing resources and knowledge to support the Seychelles Blue Economy agenda, Kelly works internationally on research and education to advance ocean-based sustainable development. Her Blue Economy course is an introductory view for persons from a wide variety of backgrounds, both technical and non-technical, and designed to encourage interaction and collaboration with other learners.
Incorporating everything from discussion forums with experts, videos and readings, the course will illustrate how and why the Blue Economy concept is driving innovative thinking around how we can engage with the ocean and how it can support societies.
Helping people understand and realize the Blue Economy potential
From transportation to tourism, from food source to carbon sink, there are many facets of ocean protection and management that will be covered in this broad-based approach to helping learners grasp the potential available to their country and its people.
The five-week course follows a self-assessment model that allows for self-pacing and will serve as the prerequisite for three further Blue Economy courses Kelly will be offering in 2020. With no registration fee and a relatively small – 4 to 5 hours per week – investment of time, the Blue Economy MOOC will allow participants to:
- Explain the Blue Economy concept, its priorities and challenges
- Recognise the importance of ecosystem services
- Identify ocean sectors that have the potential to support livelihoods and wellbeing while considering what is needed for a resilient ocean
“The course is open to everyone interested in improving their ability to make a difference to their family and their country,” says Kelly.
Time to register is now
With registration open and the first session taking place on World Oceans Day (June 8), the time to act is now. Anyone wanting to kick start their journey can register here.
Once you sign up, your access will include all materials, including videos and course-related readings. All you need is a PC, laptop, tablet or mobile phone and internet access.
Participants will receive a Certificate to verify their achievement upon completion and be invited to participate in the three follow-up Blue Economy MOOCs to be offered later this year.