The Ocean Account vol. 5 | January 2024

A note from GOAP's Co-Chairs

Dear friends and colleagues,  

We are thrilled to introduce ourselves as the new Co-Chairs of the Partnership, elected at the GOAP Members Meeting, December 2023. We are strongly committed to supporting the development and use of ocean accounts for sustainable ocean development. We are proud that the GOAP is now co-chaired by organisations from two developing economies and look forward to driving global collaboration and knowledge sharing.  

We thank the previous GOAP Co-Chairs, UNESCAP and Fisheries and Oceans Canada, for their leadership over the past four years, under which the Partnership has grown to over 30 Members, significantly increased global engagement with ocean accounting, and has held many collaborative events. Their leadership and vision have driven the success to date and, as we take over as Co-Chairs, we look forward to working with all Members to build on this valuable work.  

Over the next two years we aim to strengthen the GOAP regional Communities of Practice and expand their coverage to welcome all interested stakeholders in Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, and North America. We will continue to work with the Partnership to explore the practical utility of ocean accounting for broader sustainable ocean development processes—for example implementation of Sustainable Ocean Plans, Marine Spatial Planning, ocean-based climate action, and sustainable finance. We also strongly support the global agenda for biodiversity under the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We look forward to optimising communication and international collaboration with regional and international organisations. We are working closely with the Secretariat to produce a two-year Agenda outlining our ‘vision’ for the Partnership during our time as Co-Chairs. This will be shared shortly. 

Preparations have begun for the Global Dialogue on Sustainable Ocean Development, the 5th Global Dialogue from the GOAP, which will take place in Bali, Indonesia from 1-5 July 2024. Full registration will open 12 February.  We welcome your ideas for side events, plenary discussions and training workshops. All event details can be found here

The GOAP Secretariat and partners continued to engage in discussions and workshops across the globe including presentations on the use of ocean accounting to monitor blue carbon projects in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea and account for marine and coastal natural capital in Sri Lanka, Latin America, Norway and the Western Indian Ocean region. For more details, see the ‘recent events’ section below.   

Thank you for your continued support and happy reading,   

Registration for the Global Dialogue on Sustainable Ocean Development Opens 12 February

Date: 1-5 July 2024  
Location: Bali, Indonesia  
Registration open
 12 February - 30 April 2024 in English, French and Spanish (here).
The Global Dialogue on Sustainable Ocean Development is the 5th Global Dialogue from the GOAP.  The multi-day event will unite multi-disciplinary stakeholders from governments, international organisations, research institutions & NGOs to discuss the progress and future pathways toward sustainable ocean development. Participants will learn from local, national and regional sustainable ocean development projects and collaborate with researchers, local knowledge experts, policy-makers and project leads from across the globe. This event will begin with two days of training sessions, followed by three days of main conference with interactive side events. For the draft Agenda and event updates, see the event page here.

Latest news

GOAP Members Meeting 

Over 50 individuals from 27 GOAP Member organisations convened in early December for the GOAP Members Meeting to hear the progress the Partnership has made recently, address a number of administration requirements and discuss their role in the future of sustainable ocean development. In summary, Members:

  • Agreed to the appointment of two additional directors of the GOAP Secretariat, now co-directed by Dr Ben Milligan, Dr Philip James and Eliza Northrop;
  • Agreed to updates to the Partnership's Terms of Reference;
  • Agreed on the title, objectives and aims of the Global Dialogue on Sustainable Ocean Development (registration opens 12 February here); and
  • Recognised the significant global demand on the Partnership and agreed to collaborate to support the Partnership's agenda.

New GOAP Members

Two new members were welcomed to the GOAP Membership over the last quarter: the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) and the Sasakawa Peace Foundation’s oceanic program, the Ocean Policy Resource Institute (OPRI)

NIVA is Norway’s leading institute for fundamental and applied research on marine and freshwater ecosystems. The Institute provides authorities at all levels with the data, knowledge, and solutions they need to make evidence-based decisions. The partnership looks forward to collaborating with NIVA on their ecosystem accounting activities in Indonesia, India and Norway. 

OPRI is the oceanic program of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation, Japan. The research Institute uses marine and coastal research to propose feasible, evidence-based policy strategies and drive sustainable ocean development. OPRI operates nationally throughout Japan, regionally in the Arctic and Asia-Pacific and fosters international cooperation. The GOAP looks forward to collaborating with OPRI to explore the potential of the ocean accounting framework in evaluating the blue economy in Japan.  

Interesting in becoming a GOAP Member? Find out more here


Recent project milestones for the Global Community of Practice include a workshop on ocean accounts and governance for blue carbon ecosystems in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, as well as continued work to mainstream the use of natural capital accounting (NCA) in decision-making. Read more below.

Ocean Accounting for Blue Carbon Ecosystems in Indonesia and PNG

Natural Capital Accounting in Laamu Atoll, Maldives

View all projects

New Knowledge Products!

  • Are you an expert in environmental statistics and accounting? UN-ESCAP is hiring a Regional Adviser on Environment Statistics! In this role you will, among other duties, support countries to produce and use statistics for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement, and the Convention on Biological Diversity. To find out more details and apply, see hereApply before 20 Feb 2024! 
  • Want to learn more about the Blue Economy? Join Introduction to the Blue Economy, the latest online course from GOAP Member, the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, taught by Dr. Charles Colgan. Over 4 modules and 3-5 hours of self-paced study, the course provides an overview of the (1) components that define the blue economy, (2) challenges in managing the complex social and economic systems, (3) fundamentals of ocean accounting and their use in monitoring the contribution of the blue economy, and (4) basics of blue economy finance. For more information and registration see here.
View all knowledge products

Upcoming Events

13 February 2024 | Webinar Episode 1: Advancing Sustainable Ocean Governance: Updates from 2023 and Directions for 2024 | Online 
The first episode of the Sustainable Development Reform Hub webinar series will unite experts from across the globe to provide reflections on regional progress made in 2023 and strategies for advancing sustainable ocean development in 2024. Register and find out more about this webinar and the SDR Hub’s monthly webinar series here

12 February - 30 April | Registration opens for the Global Dialogue on Sustainable Ocean Development | Bali, Indonesia
The Global Dialogue will take place from 1-5 July 2024 in Bali, Indonesia. Registration is open from 12 February - 30 April (see here). The GOAP Secretariat is also seeking abstracts for training sessions and side events. Please submit your 250 word abstract to the Secreatariat at info@oceanaccounts.org. More details and the draft Agenda can be found above and on the official event page here.

Recent Events

17-18 October 2023 | Workshop on Ocean Accounts and Governance of Blue Carbon Ecosystems | Novotel Bogor Golf Resort and Convention Center, Bogor, Indonesia and Virtual 
This two-day workshop united government and non-government stakeholders with recipients of the Blue Carbon Accelerator Fund (BCAF) from Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Australia. The event aimed to advance collaboration on ocean accounts and its links to the management of blue carbon ecosystems (mangrove, salt marsh and seagrass) in these regions. Learn more

30 October 2023 | UN-ESCAP Sixth Asia-Pacific Day for the Ocean | Bangkok, Thailand and Online 
This conference provided a platform for [UN-ESCAP] Member States and key stakeholders to engage in systematic and inclusive dialogue on priority areas and challenges in Asia-Pacific. The event featured three thematic interactive dialogues on (A) Transitioning to a Sustainable Blue Economy in the Asia-Pacific, (B) Governance for Sustainable and Resilient Port Development and (C) Ocean-based Climate Actions. Representatives from the GOAP Partnership, K.S. Kavi Kumar from Madras International School of Economics, India and Annisya Rosdiana from Rekam Nusantara Foundation, Indonesia showcased the utility of ocean accounts in dialogues A and C. Learn more and read the event report here

6-10 Nov 2023 | 4th International ESP Latin America and Caribbean Conference | La Serena, Chile 
This week-long conference, themed ‘Sharing knowledge about ecosystem services and natural capital to build a sustainable future’, provided a platform to share regional knowledge and expertise on ecosystem services and strengthen the regional network. Maria Granada Alarcon Blazquez from the GOAP Secretariat presented “Ocean accounting as an approach to track progress towards sustainable development” and GOAP Director, Philip James, demonstrated the use of ocean accounting to help governments go beyond GPD and account for nature. Learn more here

7-9 Nov 2023 | Marine Regions Forum 2023 | Dar es Salaam, Tanzania  
This conference explored how to enhance cooperation and coordination to advance ocean governance within the Western Indian Ocean region and beyond. Program Lead of the GOAP Africa Community of Practice, Ken Findlay, chaired the session about information management. At the same session, Secretariat representative, Dr Taina Goncalves Loureiro presented "Sailing through Data Complexity: Data governance for Enhanced Ocean Stewardship". Learn more here

29 Nov 2023 | Mangrove Symphony: Harmonizing Blue Carbon, Climate Resilience & Sustainable Finance in the Indo-Pacific | Kolkata, India and Online 
This one-day hybrid workshop focused on the critical relationship between climate change and mangroves, particularly emphasizing their role as blue carbon reservoirs in the Indo-Pacific region. Secretariat representative, Dr Taina Goncalves Loureiro presented during the thematic session 'Devising Integrated Coastal Management Strategies', where she discussed balancing the conservation of blue carbon ecosystems with socio-economic development goals in the region. See event details here

View all events
Catch all the action from UNESCAP's Sixth Asia-Pacific Day for the Oceans. References to ocean accounting can be heard at 1:35:42 (KS Kavi Kumar, Madras School of Economics) and 4:04:00 (Annisya Rosdiana, Rekam Nusantara Foundation).

Submit your news

If you have any updates you would like to share through this newsletter, please get in touch with the GOAP Secretariat and we will include your items in the next edition. Please send your submissions of 250 words, plus any relevant links by December 30, 2023, to be included in the Q4 edition.
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About GOAP

The Global Ocean Accounts Partnership (GOAP) is a multistakeholder partnership established to enable countries and other stakeholders to go Beyond GDP to effectively measure and manage progress towards ocean sustainable development. GOAP aims to support at least 30 countries by 2030 to build complete sequences of national ocean accounts and co-create knowledge products that support the development of globally accepted and standardised ocean accounting practices. Co-Chaired by the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Government of Indonesia  and Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, GOAP brings together governments, international organisations, and research institutions to build a global community of practice for ocean accounting.
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