The West Africa Marine Science Community has announced its maiden edition of the West Africa Marine Science Symposium (WAMSS) that will happen from 18th to 20th August 2023.

Endorsed by the United Nations Ocean Decade with funding support from the National Geographic Society, WAMSS underscores the commitment to drive transformative change in ocean science in the sub-region through knowledge and best practices exchange and sharing, partnership development, and networking while promoting an understanding of challenges and opportunities in marine research across Africa.

With the theme “Fostering Partnerships to Advance Ocean Science in West Africa”, WAMSS is a collaboration between the College of Basic and Applied Sciences of the University of Ghana, the National Geographic Society, Partnership for Observation of the Global Ocean, Nature Environment Wildlife and Filmmaking, and the Coastal Ocean Environment Summer School in Nigeria and Ghana. Other represented partners are the United States Office of Naval Research, Mission Blue, Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA), UNEP Regional Seas Convention-Abidjan, Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission-Africa, and the UN Ocean Decade Africa Taskforce.

The first day of the symposium, 18th August, will be held at the University of Ghana, with the remaining two days, 19th -20th August taking place at the African Regent Hotel in Accra, Ghana, in a hybrid style.

WAMSS will spotlight effective marine research and conservation models, strategically linking funders with potential grant applicants.

The symposium will focus on six thematic areas critical to advancing marine science and conservation: Promoting Marine Environmental Health, Restoration, Conservation, and Management of Living Marine Resources, Outreach, Science Communication, and Storytelling, Building Coastal Community Resilience Against Coastal Hazards, Community Leadership and Participation in Ocean Knowledge Generation, and Enabling Access to Enhance Critical Understanding of Africa’s Eastern Atlantic.

The hybrid event embraces a format that leverages physical and virtual platforms to accommodate diverse participants, fostering a globally inclusive dialogue on ocean science.

Furthermore, WAMSS recognises the pivotal role of early-career professionals and youth, spotlighting career paths, funding opportunities, grant writing workshops, and vital networking avenues alongside hosting a side event for Early Career Ocean Professionals.

WAMSS is an unprecedented opportunity for stakeholders to engage collaboratively, share insights, and pioneer innovative solutions for the marine environment in West Africa and beyond.

Source: Ghana/