The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation is a marine science and ocean conservancy foundation.  We work to preserve, protect, and restore the world’s oceans and aquatic resources through research, education, and outreach. Each of the three Foundation’s three divisions work together in order to fulfill the mission of the Foundation: to protect and preserve ocean health by providing science-based solutions.

From 2011-2016, the Foundation nearly circumnavigated the globe aboard the M/Y Golden Shadow on the Global Reef Expedition. This once in a lifetime research mission set out to assess the health and resiliency of coral reefs around the world. Although the field research for the Global Reef Expedition is now complete, we are hard at work analyzing the data, publishing scientific papers, and sharing our findings with government officials, stakeholders, and local leaders so our findings can be used for ocean conservation.

Marine Science

For nearly twenty years, the Foundation has been conducting cutting-edge coral reef ecosystem research in remote locations around the world. In each location, the core marine science team from the Foundation joins together with local scientists to achieve the following goals:Marine Science Research

  • Habitat Mapping: Map and characterize the extent and spatial distribution of different habitats within poorly studied, remote coral reef ecosystems.
  • Scientific Surveys: Characterize the community structure and functional role of reef fishes, stony corals, algae and other ecologically and economically important organisms from aquatic ecosystems around the globe.
  • Reef Resilience: Identify their current status and major threats, and examine factors that enhance their capacity to resist, survive and rapidly recover from disturbance.

The resulting scientific findings and GIS maps are shared freely with participating countries and scientific and regulatory organizations and are used to develop sound environmental management strategies for coral reefs.

Media Relations and OutreachLOF_Jamaica_JacketFront

A key component of the Foundation’s conservation program is media relations and outreach. The Foundation:

  • Produces conservation films for international broadcast, online distribution, and local screenings around the world.
  • Professional underwater photographers document the beauty of coral reefs around the world with stunning ocean pictures.
  • The Foundation’s newsletter, blog, and social media streams inform and update users about coral reefs and our work.
  • Articles are written for magazines, newspapers, and websites to notify people around the world about current research, outreach, and education that the Foundation is providing.

The Foundation strongly believes in the role of powerful imagery to illustrate the complexity of life underwater, convey ocean conservation messages, and inspire people to care more about aquatic ecosystems.


As part of the Foundation’s mission, the education department engages and informs students about the natural world of coral reefs by:DSC_0272RS

The education department aims to further advance ocean literacy and the conservation and restoration of living oceans.