The Monaco Statement: Aligning the Philanthropic Community in Global Ocean Action

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The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation signed a joint statement with 23 other philanthropic organizations, amplifying the role of the philanthropic community in global ocean action as part of the Ocean Decade. The Monaco Statement was launched on the sidelines of the 2023 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Summit in New York City.

The Monaco Statement was developed on the occasion of the Third Ocean Decade Foundations Dialogue Meeting co-organized on 14-16 June 2023 in Monaco. The meeting was hosted by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, a long-standing partner of the Ocean Decade and founding member of the Ocean Decade Alliance, and co-organised with UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission in its role as coordinating agency of the Decade.

During three days, leaders from over 30 philanthropic organizations discussed the crucial role that their community plays in the global Ocean Decade movement through targeted investment in ocean science and knowledge. To further support ambitious actions and high-impact solutions in ocean science, they defined a joint action framework that extends beyond foundations at national, regional and international scales. Structured around four priority areas, it addresses multiple key initiatives and tools aimed at facilitating support to both ongoing and future Ocean Decade Actions, and highlighting the importance of creating best practices and standards for philanthropic engagement.

“Philanthropy has a unique role to play in the Ocean Decade movement,” emphasizes Vladimir Ryabinin, IOC/UNESCO Executive Secretary. “Through resource mobilization, outreach, advocacy, and the development of an enabling environment, foundations bridge the gap between the private and public sectors, local communities and NGOs, thereby catalyzing broad support for Ocean Decade priorities.”

In this regard, the Monaco Statement builds on discussions and outcomes of the First and Second Foundations Dialogue Meetings, including the Bouknadel Statement, and serves as a reference point and guide for individual and collective action for the institutions involved in generating ocean knowledge for sustainable development.

“Through the Monaco Statement, we, the participants of the Dialogues, reaffirm our support to the Ocean Decade and its vision for the “science we need for the ocean we want.  We commit to advancing and expanding the role of philanthropic organizations to strengthen science–policy–society connections and support a more equitable distribution of resources for ocean science,” said Olivier Wenden, Vice-President & CEO of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation.

Members of the Ocean Decade Foundations Dialogue reaffirmed their commitment to exploring innovative financing, providing support for co-design and capacity development, and spearheading global strategic communications efforts during the launch event of the Statement on 19 September 2023 in New York which was supported by The Ocean Foundation, Elizabeth Fast Ferries, OceanX and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.

During the launch event, members of the Foundations Dialogue discussed the importance of continuing to raise awareness of the unique role that Foundations can play in the Ocean Decade and committed to working together to bring a strong philanthropic voice to the 2024 Ocean Decade Conference, hosted by Spain in Barcelona, 10 – 12 April 2024.

The Monaco Statement

About the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation:

The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation is a nonprofit environmental organization that works to protect and restore the world’s oceans through scientific research, outreach, and education. As part of its commitment to Science Without Borders®, the foundation provides data and information to organizations, governments, scientists, and local communities so that they can use the latest science to work toward sustainable ocean protection.

About the Ocean Decade and the Ocean Decade Foundations Dialogue:

Proclaimed in 2017 by the United Nations General Assembly, the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) (‘the Ocean Decade’) seeks to stimulate ocean science and knowledge generation to reverse the decline of the state of the ocean system and catalyse new opportunities for sustainable development of this massive marine ecosystem. The vision of the Ocean Decade is ‘the science we need for the ocean we want’. The Ocean Decade provides a convening framework for scientists and stakeholders from diverse sectors to develop the scientific knowledge and the partnerships needed to accelerate and harness advances in ocean science to achieve a better understanding of the ocean system, and deliver science-based solutions to achieve the 2030 Agenda. The UN General Assembly mandated UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) to coordinate the preparations and implementation of the Decade.

The Ocean Decade Foundations Dialogue is an informal, global network of more than 30 community, corporate and private philanthropic funders working together to support the Ocean Decade vision for ‘the science we need for the ocean we want’ and thus contribute to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and relevant UN processes.

About the IOC/UNESCO:

The Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC/UNESCO) promotes international cooperation in marine sciences to improve management of the ocean, coasts and marine resources. The IOC enables its 150 Member States to work together by coordinating programmes in capacity development, ocean observations and services, ocean science and tsunami warning. The work of the IOC contributes to the mission of UNESCO to promote the advancement of science and its applications to develop knowledge and capacity, key to economic and social progress, the basis of peace and sustainable development.

UN Ocean Decade

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