IJMS Themed Set - Co-Designing Science for the Ocean We Want

As we progress through the Ocean Decade, we look forward to gaining new insights and knowledge on how to collaboratively design ocean science. The articles in this themed set serve as the starting point for an ongoing collection.
Published: 5 April 2023

​​​​The United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development has set a requirement that all actions it supports must have concrete plans for involving stakeholders in the co-creation of ocean science. This presents a unique opportunity to experiment with different methods of stakeholder engagement and evaluate their effectiveness.

In ICES Journal of Marine Science "Food for Thought" series, leaders from Decade-endorsed Actions describe their plans for incorporating stakeholders in the co-design, co-production, and co-delivery of ocean science, and share how they will measure the success of these approaches. Additionally, submissions were invited to the "Stories from the Front Lines" series, in which authors provide unfiltered accounts of the lessons learned from previous efforts to co-design ocean science.

Measuring the effectiveness of co-design

To ensure that co-designed and co-delivered ocean science leads to superior outcomes, including improved decision-making and better decisions compared to conventional methods, it is vital to experiment with diverse approaches and document their effectiveness. Encouragingly, an increasing amount of literature is available that covers the monitoring and evaluation of transdisciplinary scientific approaches, which can offer valuable guidance on how to assess the efficacy of co-design initiatives in Ocean Decade programmes.

While co-design of science has become a norm in transdisciplinary research, it remains unfamiliar to many working in ocean science.

The Ocean Decade offers a unique chance to experiment with novel data collection methods for monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of co-design and co-delivery of ocean science. It also presents a natural opportunity to examine which approaches to co-design and co-production are effective, and which are not, and to understand the conditions that influence their success. By leveraging these opportunities, we can refine our understanding of how to optimize stakeholder engagement and promote sustainable ocean science.

Sharing knowledge about co-design

As the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development progresses, we anticipate acquiring fresh insights and information about the co-design of ocean science. ICES Journal of Marine Science encourages the authors in this series to submit follow-up articles, such as research papers, as they implement co-design initiatives and conduct associated monitoring and evaluation assessments. Additionally, new Ocean Decade Programmes are invited to participate in the series as they receive endorsement and embark on their own innovative approaches to co-design ocean science. By sharing our experiences and outcomes, we can collectively advance our understanding of stakeholder engagement and sustainable ocean science.

The main motivator behind this Themed Set is Linwood H. Pendleton, University of Brest and Ifremer.

To learn more about the submitted articles, explore the latest themed set in ICES Journal of Marine Science, Co-Designing Science for the Ocean We Want.

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​​Cartoon: Bas Köhler. ​Click to enlarge.

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IJMS Themed Set - Co-Designing Science for the Ocean We Want

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