World Ocean Journal

This week, the World Ocean Observatory will launch World Ocean Journal, a new bi-annual electronic magazine on ocean culture, issues, and solutions to be read on your desktop, tablet, and smart phone.

As you will see, we intend to include essays, interviews, art, exhibits and performances in a vital profile of the impact of the ocean on our lives. We will introduce exemplary ocean advocates, describe innovative projects, and offer perspectives and ideas to help us understand the
full extent of the ocean crisis and
to suggest solutions and actions to mitigate destructive behaviors and to offer alternative approaches.

In this first edition we include education, design, art, music, and personal reflection. You will find an excerpt from the introduction to Lincoln Paine’s extraordinary The Sea & Civilization, a one volume maritime history of the world, just released by Knopf, and sure to be one of the most important history publications of 2014. We also include a video interview with Dr. Darron Collins, President of the College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor, Maine, about the synergistic relationship between the ocean and human ecology -- the inter-relationship between social conduct and the sustainability of Nature --  focusing on new interdisciplinary alternatives, economic practices, and individual and collection behaviors. This emphasis on change and revolutionary solutions continues in a conversation with Wendi Goldsmith, founder of the Bio-Engineering Group, on new engineering practice, ecological design, and innovative restoration projects in coastal wetlands, municipal parks, and inland waterways.

Internationally, you will also find a survey of artistic representations of Mami Wata, an African goddess of the sea, by Dr. Henry John Drewal, a colorful portfolio of artistic representations of this sea spirit who has found her way into the material and religious culture of Africa and the African diaspora.  You will hear a live performance by The Rubens Quartet,  a young Dutch chamber ensemble, of  “Visions at Sea,” composed by Joey Roukens, commissioned for the 2013 re-opening of the National Maritime Museum of The Netherlands in Amsterdam. And you will see a plea for international consideration of the impact of climate change and sea level rise on the small island nations by Ronnie Jumeau, the Seychelles Ambassador to the United States, excerpted from a video interview produce by the World Ocean Observatory and Compass Light Films at the Climate Summit in Copenhagen in 2009.

Finally you will see my own reflections on “reciprocity,” as a rationale and framework for exchange of value and engagement between the ocean and us, between civil society and the natural world that sustains it. This essay was first heard on World Ocean Radio on 2013.

We will distribute World Ocean Journal through presentation to the
more than 1.25 million unique annual visitors
to the World Ocean Observatory website last year, through our thousands of program and newsletter subscribers, through the ever-expanding international audience for World Ocean Radio, and through our many social media channels.

You can make a huge contribution to this effort. Take a look at the Journal. If you like what you see, let me urge you to share this new publication with your e-mail contacts, colleagues at work, your old and new friends, and other “citizens of the ocean” through your own organizational links and personal connections. Forward the Journal as a free gift to everyone, anyone you know who is concerned about the ocean today, about the fish we find in restaurants and the market, about the cleanliness of our beaches, marshes, and watersheds, about the viability of the ocean as the penultimate system on which we and our children will depend for fresh water, food, energy, health, security, recreation, and culture in the future. Let’s distribute the World Ocean Journal worldwide, and see what happens.

Join us, introduce this new tool for ocean communications to everyone you know. And why not help us evaluate the results? Please do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected] with your reactions, comments, suggestions, and ideas for future content and connections. Thank you for your interest and commitment to the world ocean.