With climate change, biodiversity loss, and still large unknowns about life in the oceans, the research community is faced by important societal challenges at a time when public research suffers from budget restrictions. ICES has not coordinated an international research exploratory programme for many years. Yet, important amounts of money are concentrated in the private sector and some patrons are now building open ocean research vessels. They can fund the exploration of the seas and oceans with innovative techniques to address the social challenges of our times. But for that they need to partner with academia and public institutes, where recognized scientific knowledge lies.
Key players from two such projects will be invited to give presentations. One from the Tara Oceans project under the patronage of the company Agnès B and the other from the Yersin project under the patronage of the prince of Monaco and the Fiat family. The presentations will show how the partnerships work, including project elaborations, scientific benefits, institutional constraints, public outreach, publications.
The discussion in this open session will tackle different aspects of the possible roles for ICES in such partnerships, for instance by coordinating surveys, collaborative international research. Outcomes of the session will foster the development of a strategy for ICES in seeking such partnerships to increase its capacity in the exploration of the ocean.