Most of us live our lives blissfully unaware of how our day-to-day actions impact on the health of the ocean, or how the health of the ocean impacts on our own daily lives. Ocean literacy is defined as "an understanding of the ocean’s influence on you and your influence on the ocean". An ocean literate person is able to understand the importance of the ocean for humankind, is able to communicate about the ocean in a meaningfully way, and has a more responsible and informed behaviour towards the ocean and its resources.
The ocean literacy framework and approach has been developed by a group of educators and scientists in the United States, and then taken up, and adapted by European, Asian and African scientists and educators. While all these organizations and associations have been critical to promote ocean literacy nationally and regionally, the need for an international collaboration and exchange of good practices and experiences led to the engagement of the IOC-UNESCO in ocean literacy. The IOC promotes the dissemination and the use of ocean literacy materials and resources to schools and students from all around the world, manages an ocean literacy portal which acts as one-stop-shop for ocean literacy resources, and organizes training and capacity development activities in collaboration with other IOC units and with the Ocean Teacher Global Academy. The IOC furthermore collaborates with media, philantropies, artists, scientists and educators to develop innovative tools and approaches to fully leverage ocean knowledge to promote ocean sustainability
IOC Ocean Literacy Activities