UH Mānoa contributes to first U.S. OceanObs’ Conference

The Hawai‘i Convention Center is hosting OceanObs’19 from Sept. 16-20, 2019, marking the first time that the premier global ocean sciences conference will be held in the U.S.

More than 1,200 attendees are expected from 63 countries, doubling the conference’s previous turnout. OceanObs’, standing for ocean observation, is held every 10 years, previously in Venice, Italy, in September 2009, and Saint Raphael, France, in October 1999. Attendees range from oceanographers to data scientists, engineers, and policymakers.

With the goal of connecting science and society, OceanObs’19 is a collaborative effort of the ocean observing community. The conference seeks to improve response to scientific and societal needs of a sustained, multidisciplinary and integrated ocean observing system, for better understanding the environment, monitoring climate, and informing adaptation strategies, as well as the sustainable use of ocean resources.

“We are working to best connect user communities and observers, with input, in the form of community white papers, helping shape strategy development throughout the conference and for the upcoming decade,” said Christopher Sabine, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Oceanography professor and OceanObs’19 Program Committee member. “People across the globe benefit from timely, reliable ocean observations every day. More accurate weather apps, sustainable seafood plans, and even today’s surf forecast are all thanks to our ever-advancing ocean observing capabilities.”

The community-driven conference will focus on connecting the technical and scientific aspects of ocean observing to its applications and societal benefits on topics ranging from ecosystem health to international governance. The conference will culminate in a consensus declaration with actionable steps that will guide the field over the next decade. In addition to the main conference, there will be a variety of side events and workshops, including a pre-conference networking gathering for students and early career professionals.

The UH Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) is a financial sponsor of the event and multiple SOEST faculty have served on the program and organizing committees. The conference includes participation and exhibits by major sponsors such as NASA, NOAA and NSF, as well as involvement from leading researchers at SOEST and the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS), among other organizations.

“OceanObs’19 provides Hawaii and countries throughout the Pacific Rim with the opportunity to shine on the international stage as leaders in ocean sciences,” said Teri Orton, general manager, Hawai‘i Convention Center, managed by AEG Facilities. “We are pleased to serve as the first U.S. location for this prestigious community-driven conference that will set the direction for the next decade of ocean observation and research.”

— Portions of this content courtesy of Hawai‘i Convention Center