In the past year we have cultivated new partnerships and collaborations with a number of groups engaged in ocean health and discovery. And we’ve continued to nurture our existing relationships too. By celebrating the successes of other organizations and engaging in relevant and meaningful collaborations, we are continuing to expand and imagine new solutions and advance public understanding of the ocean. A rising tide truly lifts all boats.

A Center of Excellence in Arctic Studies & Research in Maine

The Arctic Futures Institute (AFI) is a joint initiative of the Center for Oceans & Coastal Law of the University of Maine School of Law, the Climate Change Institute of the University of Maine, and the World Ocean Observatory. The three founding AFI institutions are a unique combination of science, law, policy and outreach based in Maine. The Climate Change Institute has forty years of Arctic science experience, the Center for Oceans & Coastal Law is engaged in advanced Arctic law and policy research, and the World Ocean Observatory reaches a global community of ocean advocates through web-based content and communication.
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2 Women, 1 Trapper's Hut, 9 Months, 6 Science Projects, 1 Mission

Sunniva Sorby and Hilde Fålun Strøm - the first women in history to overwinter in Svalbard solo - are ready to embark on a second polar night in the High Arctic of Norway in late 2020. Hearts In The Ice aims to bridge science and global citizens by building stories and sharing knowledge to inspire action, so we all play a participatory role in protecting our planet.
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An annual juried contest of films celebrating the heritage, spirit of adventure, and ingenuity of boats and waterborne pursuits

Each year the World Ocean Observatory partners with Main Street Bucksport for the  International Maritime Film Festival held in late September. IMFF is a celebration of maritime heritage, spirit of adventure, concern for the environment, and ingenuity of boats and waterborne pursuits. Interested filmakers can submit materials via FilmFreeway.
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A 21st century app designed to interpret an ancient
sub-Arctic farming landscape in Southern Greenland

In partnership with the Arctic Futures Institute and the Greenland National Museum & Archives, the W2O is developing a smart phone app to be delivered in June of 2021 for the interpretation of the astonishing historical landscape and artifacts located in Kujataa--Greenland's most recent UNESCO World Heritage Site. Kujataa is a stunning, extraordinary landscape that is perfectly preserved as a ruin that imbues spirituality and a reverence for Nature. These are remote places, accessible only by boat with no cell or wireless service, and places where expensive signage does not endure in the harsh weather conditions. The Kujataa app will help to transcend these limitations and will provide visitors to the ruins with specific information in English, Greenlandic, and Danish.

Encouraging innovative and sustainable approaches to economic opportunity

W2O is partnered with the NEOC as their non-profit-in-residence in their collaborative Ocean Cluster Hüs on the waterfront in Portland, Maine. NEOC exists to connect ocean-minded people with industry knowledge to help ensure opportunity is pursued inclusively, economically, and sustainably.
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How healthy is the ocean?
From tourism and recreation to clean waters and biodiversity, from carbon storage and natural products to artisinal fishing opportunities and sense of place, the OCEAN HEALTH INDEX  measures all that we value about the ocean, providing us with a holistic view of how to manage sustainably for future generations. In the coming months, in collaboration with the Ocean Health Index, the W2O is proud to be highlighting the fourteen goals and sub-goals of the Index and how countries are measuring up using the 2020 Index numbers. Read more about that collaboration here.

A virtual aquarium deep sea exhibit
In 2021 the W2O embarked on exciting new collaboration in support of the WORLD OCEAN EXPLORER virtual aquarium. Funded by the Schmidt Ocean Institute, we have begun development of a virtual Deep Sea exhibit to showcase encounters and discoveries during Schmidt's many deep sea expeditions, most specifically their Australia Campaign in 2020. These expeditions of deep sea environments, seamounts, sub-marine canyons and coral ecosystems brought to light a cache of new species and information that will be made available in Explorer's Deep Sea exhibit.