POGO-Konferenz auf den Kapverden | Foto: A. Villwock, GEOMAR

25.01.2019 | More than 40 managers from marine research institutions in 20 countries met last week at the Ocean Science Centre Mindelo on Ilha de São Vicente in Cape Verde. The conference was hosted by the Partnership for the Observation of the Oceans (POGO). It was founded 20 years ago to better coordinate the global observation of the oceans worldwide.

As a POGO member, the Leibniz Center for Marine Tropical Research (ZMT) was also represented at the meeting by its commercial director, Dr. Nicolas Dittert. The experts exchanged views on current marine research issues and innovative observation systems.

Global questions such as the impact of climate change on the oceans can only be answered in cooperation with international partners. The POGO network makes it possible to create synergies through international agreements.

The consortium consists of around 40 marine research institutions that deal with oceanographic observations, scientific research, the exchange of scientific data, operational services and training. In particular, POGO promotes the introduction of integrated global systems in ocean observation, such as multidisciplinary measuring platforms, robotic systems, satellite and weather observation.

The ZMT joined the POGO network in 2018. "The application of principles of sustainability in the management of marine resources is closely linked to the comprehensive development of corresponding capacities at all levels of society," says Dr. Nicolas Dittert. "Our aim is to make a fundamental contribution within the framework of POGO in three areas in particular, namely in building competences for marine research and protection, in understanding the effects of global influences on humans, and in setting up a global service that provides scientific data.

ZMT's long-standing involvement in the MSc program ISATEC (International Studies in Aquatic Tropical Ecology) and in the training of PhD students and young scientists from its partner countries has led to a worldwide network of over 700 alumni. The ZMT's Office for Knowledge Exchange has gained experience in knowledge and technology transfer and policy consulting.

About POGO (Partnership for Observation of the Global Ocean)

POGO brings together the leaders of major marine research institutions from 20 Member States. The consortium is represented on every continent. In addition to the ZMT, the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) and the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Marine Research Kiel are POGO members in Germany. Until this annual meeting, Germany was the leading country in this international organisation: Prof. Dr. Karen Wiltshire, Deputy Director of the AWI, chaired the POGO Group. This year's POGO meeting will be chaired by Nick Owens. He is Director of the Scottish Association for Marine Science.