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New Ideas Box connects humans to the ocean

When you put a seashell to your ear it sounds like the sea thanks to the air vibrations inside. The beauty of listening to the sea feels real though, and as it taps into our deep connection with water, with the oceans, we are transfixed for as long as we hold it in our hands. Next month in Venice, at the Ocean Literacy World Conference, this human relationship with the ocean is set to go deeper than ever before – when an intergenerational approach is taken to permanently reset it for the good of both.

The upcoming two-day event on 7 and 8 June falls within the framework of SEA BEYOND – an educational programme launched in 2019 to support ocean preservation, led by Prada Group in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO.

Experts from 87 countries will help to shape the Venice Declaration for Ocean Literacy, which will be a major outcome from the event. These recommendations will be shared with all UN Member States this summer in New York, when they meet to finalise the agenda for the third UN Ocean Conference, being co-hosted by the governments of France and Costa Rica in Nice in June 2025.

“In Venice, we will define together what are the priority issues and concrete actions that we must implement in the coming years to make the relationship between humans and the ocean more harmonious, just and sustainable,” explains Francesca Santoro, Senior Programme Officer of UNESCO-IOC.

Ideas Box

The Ideas Box, an ingenious innovation that French architect and designer, Philippe Starck, created 10 years ago for the NGO Bibliothèques Sans Frontières (Libraries without Borders), will be recreated in the form of the first SEA BEYOND Ideas Box. Starck and Patrick Weil, founder and chairman of Bibliothèques Sans Frontières, will showcase the tool before children and young people are given the chance to interact with its contents and take part in sea-themed workshops inspired by the box.

The Ocean Literacy World Conference takes place in Venice on 7 and 8 June. It will also be live streamed on the UNESCO Venice YouTube channel.


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Written By

Susan is the co-founder of Innovators Magazine and a consultant for OnePoint5Media. Susan is also a member of the UNFCCC-led Resilience Frontiers Nexus group and the Chair of the APOPO Foundation UK board.


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