05/11/2019 | From November 7 to 8, around 40 international scientists from the African West Indian Ocean region meet in Zanzibar for the Kick-Off Conference of the West Indian Ocean Governance & Exchange Network (WIOGEN). This 25-months (June 2019 – July 2021) project is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through their "MeerWissen" initiative as joint project of ZMT (PA 4) and IOI South Africa.
The kick-off conference will underline the inclusive and democratic governance approach of the to-be-built group structure as it will allow conference participants to shape their network according to their requirements. From ZMT, Anna-Katharina Hornidge (Director IOI Germany) and Bianca Hurlemann represent the German partner while ZMT Alumni Abassador Robert Katikiro (University of Dar es Salaam) will also be there.
WIOGEN aims at establishing a science to policy networking platform, with an integrative vision of social learning approaches that foster regional ocean governance. WIOGEN will meet its objectives through the creation of a transdisciplinary institutionally-driven coalition of academic, policy-related, private and civil society partner institutions across the West Indian Ocean Region. It complements other regional marine science networks (e.g. WIOMSA), by focusing explicitly on ocean and coastal governance, thus bridging the social and marine sciences.
Furthermore, the networking initiative places emphasis on the capacity development of early career ocean governance researchers, policymakers, tertiary educators, and development practitioners. Thematically, WIOGEN will be structured around three ocean governance themes: (a) nutritional security, sustainable fisheries, aquaculture and livelihoods; (b) marine spatial planning and coastal management; (c) biodiversity conservation, pollution and habitat loss.
To achieve its overarching goal of a regional approach to ocean governance, the partnership format adopts an inclusive, democratically-organized science network structure for scientific exchange and joint academic publishing. Second, it aims at co-designing and rolling out tailored pedagogic and learning practices for capacity development of early and mid-career participants, with a focus on virtual and other experimental formats.
Third, the network will serve as an intra-regional and trans-continental Community of Practice (East Africa-Europe) – based on the model of an inclusively growing/evolving institutional structure in line with core objectives of the MeerWissen funding line.
More information https://wiogen.org/