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Navigating the Future IV

Navigating the Future IV was organized around the framework of key societal challenges in the areas of climate, human health, food security, energy and safe and sustainable use of marine space. NFIV also addressed strategic and enabling issues such as the European Ocean Observing System (EOOS), training, the science-policy interface and ocean literacy.


Navigating the Future IV was published on 20 June 2013 in Brussels.




In June 2013, Marine Board-ESF published the fourth version of its flagship series, Navigating the Future IV (NFIV). NFIV scans the horizon to anticipate emerging societal challenges and corresponding future research priorities concerning the seas and oceans. The paper demonstrates the key role of marine science in addressing societal challenges and supporting blue growth. It outlines the tools and technologies that will be needed to realize these opportunities including the next generation of ocean observation infrastructure. It also examines the training and skills that will be required by tomorrow’s marine experts, and the importance of creating better interactions between marine scientists, policymakers and the general public.

The Chapters of NFIV are:

  1. Navigating the Future: Progress and challenges in marine science and science policy
  2. Understanding marine ecosystems and their societal benefits
  3. Changing oceans in a changing Earth system
  4. Safe and sustainable use of marine and coastal space: Balancing use and conservation
  5. Sustainable harvest of food from the sea
  6. Linking oceans and human health
  7. Energy and raw materials from the seas and oceans
  8. Sustainable use of deep sea resources
  9. Challanges in polar ocean science
  10. Blue technology: Innovation hotspots for the European marine sector
  11. An integrated and sustained European Ocean Observing System (EOOS)
  12. Training and careers for the next generation of marine experts
  13. Towards effective European marine science-policy interfaces
  14. Europe’s maritime ambitions require and ocean literate population