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Elisabeth Mann Borgese
Ocean Lecture

The Elisabeth Mann Borgese Ocean Lecture Series commemorates and celebrates the life and work of Elisabeth Mann Borgese, founder of the International Ocean Institute. Launched in 2005 to mark the 25th anniversary of the IOI Training Programme in Halifax, it aims to encourage the debate on oceans issues which was so dear to Elisabeth, by inviting internationally renowned speakers to discuss important and timely ocean-related topics. Through this lecture series, we hope to generate awareness among stakeholders, academics, students and the general public about important ocean issues.


7.00 p.m. Thursday 28th September


with guest speaker
CEO & Scientific Director, Ocean Frontier Institute
Associate Vice-President Research (Ocean), Dalhousie University

Listen to the RECORDING OF THIS LECTURE, which focused on how to achieve meaningful ocean-climate action, with reference to two initiatives led by Dalhousie and OFI: the North Atlantic Carbon Observatory and the Transforming Climate Action research programme.


2022: Canada’s Oceans and Coasts: Pathways to Sustainability in a Sea of Change -- event recording available here -- with keynote speaker Rashid Sumaila (University of British Columbia) joined by Discussants Megan Bailey (Dalhousie University), Robert Rangeley (Oceana) and Nancy Shackell (Fisheries and Oceans Canada), moderated by Ratana Chuenpagdee (Memorial University of Newfoundland and Too Big To Ignore), with an online introduction by Tirza Meyer (KTH Royal Institute of Technology) drawing on her recent book, Elisabeth Mann Borgese and the Law of the Sea. The 2022 lecture also marked the 50th anniversary of IOI's founding by Elisabeth Mann Borgese in Malta.

2020 and 2021: on hold due to covid.

2019: The "Blue Revolution": Challenges and Opportunities - VIDEO RECORDING available here (courtesy of Nexus Media) and livestreamed via the IOI-Canada Facebook page. Keynote Speaker: Renee Sauve, Acting Director General, External Relations Directorate, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, with panel responses from: Dr Ratana Chuenpagdee, Director, Too Big to Ignore, Memorial University of Newfoundland, and Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada; Dr Susanna Fuller, Senior Project Manager, Oceans North and Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada; Sigrid Kuehnemund, Vice President, Ocean Conservation, WWF-Canada; moderated by: Dr Sean Brillant, Manager of Marine Conservation, Canadian Wildlife Federation and Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada.  

2018: panel discussion on Peace and Equity in Ocean Governance - Possibility or Pipe Dream? with: Vice-Admiral (ret'd) Glenn V. Davidson, former Ambassador of Canada to Syria and Afghanistan, Dr Susanna Fuller, High Seas Alliance and Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada, Hugh Williamson, Adjunct Professor, Marine Affairs Program, Dalhousie University, and Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada, and Moderator: Dr Wendy Watson Wright, Chief Executive Officer, Ocean Frontier Institute. This was one of the 2018 anniversary events -- see: EMB @ 100: Marking the Centenary -- and the reception following the panel provided the first opportunity to view the EMB centenary exhibit.

2017: panel discussion on Marine Protected Areas - For Whom? incuding live streaming from New York, where the first UN Oceans Conference was taking place. The panel at Dalhousie consisted of: Moderator: Sean Brillant, Manager – Marine Programmes, Canadian Wildlife Federation; Maxine Westhead, Section Head, Protected Areas and Conservation Planning, Oceans and Coastal Management Division, Department of Fisheries and Oceans; Ken Paul, Director of Fisheries, Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs Secretariat; Paul Barnes, Director – Atlantic Canada & Arctic, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers; Veronika Brzeski, Executive Director, Cape Breton Fish Harvesters Association.

At the New York end, live updates and analysis were provided by: Ratana Chuenpagdee, Professor, Department of Geography, Memorial University of Newfoundland; Susanna Fuller, Marine Conservation Coordinator, Ecology Action Centre<Kevin Stringer, Associate Deputy Minister, Department of Fisheries and Oceans

2016: panel discussion on CLIMATE CHANGE IN NOVA SCOTIA: ARE WE READY? with Richard Zurawski(Chair), meteorologist, radio host and author; Blair Greenan, Research Scientist & Head, Oceanography and Climate Section, Department of Fisheries & Oceans (click here to download presentation); Shannon Miedema, Manager, Energy & Environment, Halifax Regional Municipality (click here to download presentation);Tim Webster, Research Scientist, Applied Geomatics Research Group, Nova Scotia Community College; and, Georgia Klein, Lecturer, College of Sustainability, Dalhousie University.

2015: panel discussion on THE OCEAN AND YOU: WHY DOES IT MATTER? featuring: Douglas Wallace (Chair), Scientific Director, Marine Environmental Observation Prediction & Response Network; Kumiko Azetsu-Scott, Research Scientist, Oceanography & Climate Section, Department of Fisheries & Oceans; Heather Kelday, Executive Director, Nova Scotia Sea School; Bud Streeter, President, Lloyd's Register Canada Ltd; and, Boris Worm, Professor, Department of Biology, Dalhousie University.

2014: Dr Susan D. Shaw, President & Founder, Marine Environmental Research Institute, Blue Hill, Maine and Professor, School of Public Health, Environmental Health Sciences, State University of New York, Albany. Dr Shaw spoke on Reckless Endangerment: The Gulf Oil Spill Revisited -- And Why Canada Should Pay Attention. For a copy of her speech, please e-mail IOI-Canada.

2013: Nikolaus Gelpke, President of the Ocean Science Research Foundation, Vice-President of IOI, founder & Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning mare, publisher of mareverlag, and Managing Director of maribus gGmbH. A video of his lecture on Communicating the Oceans is available by e-mailing IOI-Canada.

2012: In the run-up to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, a panel session on Blue Planet under Threat: Challenges and Opportunities at RIO+20 featured Dr Awni Behnam, President, International Ocean Institute, Dr Susanna Fuller, Marine Conservation Co-ordinator, Ecology Action Centre, Ms Megan Leslie, MP for Halifax, Deputy Leader and Environment Critic, NDP, and Hon. David MacDonald, Commons Group, and was chaired by Dr Larry Hildebrand (Senior Research Fellow, IOI-Canada). Dr Hildebrand's introductory presentation (990 KB) can be downloaded, and an MP4 video (3.4 GB) of the event is available upon request, by e-mailing IOI-Canada.

2011: CBC's Paul Kennedy hosted Arts and the Sea: a Celebration, a multimedia evening of ocean-focused conversation, music, literature, painting and photography.  He was joined by Dusan Kadlec (painter), Kathy Mac (poet), Scott Macmillan (composer) with Jennyfer Brickenden (librettist), and Donna Morrissey (author), with images on display by Damian Lidgard (photographer). 

2010: Dr Susan Lieberman, Director, International Policy, the Pew Environment Group, Washington, USA, lecturing on Science versus Politics: Tales from CITES. For the full written text of her lecture, click here. To listen to the evening's proceedings, with welcome from Mr Michael Butler, introductory remarks by Dr Gilbert Winham, the keynote address itself, and a questions session moderated by Dr Ratana Chuenpagdee, please contact IOI-Canada for the 84.5 MB mp3 file.

2009: Dr Rob Huebert, Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Calgary and Associate Director of its Centre for Military and Strategic Studies, Calgary, Canada, lecturing on Canada and the Circumpolar World: The Coming Blizzard. A full abstract is available here.

2008: Dr Elliott Norse,President, Marine Conservation Biology Institute, Bellevue, Washington, USA, lecturing on Oceans of Hope: Encouraging Signs in Marine Conservation. A 13.1 MB pdf version of the presentation is available upon request, and the text of Dr Tony Charles's introductory comments can be downloaded.

2007: Dr Kathleen Conlan, Research Scientist, Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, Canada, lecturing on Under the Polar Ice: Diversity, Disturbance and Climate Change

2006: Professor Ted McDorman, Faculty of Law, University of Victoria, Canada lecturing on Salt Water Neighbours: Canada-U.S. Ocean Relations (and Denmark Too!)

2005: Dr Andrew A. Rosenberg, Commissioner, U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy, and Professor, Natural Resources Policy and Management, University of New Hampshire, USA lecturing on Ecosystem-based Management of Ocean and Coastal Resources: Can We Get There from Here?  Introductory comments to this inaugural lecture of the series, delivered by the President of IOI, Dr Awni Behnam, can be downloaded here.


Last updated: 21st October 2023