Center for Ocean and Society

The Center for Ocean and Society conducts interdisciplinary research on ocean and society and involves societal actors in transdisciplinary projects.

The research at the Center for Ocean and Society is based on the understanding of seas and coasts as socio-ecological systems. Experts from economics, geology, oceanography, fisheries biology, chemistry and other disciplines work together on projects with the active involvement of societal actors. This makes it possible to examine a topic from different perspectives and changes the approach to these problems. To assess different scenarios, methodologically specific models from economics as well as climate research, ocean research and ecosystem research are linked.

The projects work on a local, regional and global level and actively involve non-university knowledge carriers in the development of research questions. Solutions for coping with the climate and ocean crisis are to be developed through the cooperation of participants from research, politics, business and civil society. The overarching goal of the research is a science-based and independent contribution to the implementation of the sustainability goals of the UN Agenda 2030.

The Center for Ocean and Society conducts research on the following topics:

  • Economics of natural resources

  • Natural hazards of the coasts and seas

  • Marine Food Security

The Center for Ocean and Society is a cross-faculty platform of the priority research area Kiel Marine Science (KMS) at Kiel University. KMS is comprised of more than 40 working groups from seven faculties at Kiel University and acts as the umbrella organization for ocean and climate research in the natural and social sciences.

Photo: Felix Gross

Marine Food Security

Researchers are investigating how marine food can contribute to global food security. Here, small-scale coastal fisheries in poorer coastal regions play an important role, as does the sustainable use of new technologies, e.g. in aquaculture.

Marine and coastal resource economy

Seas and coasts are characterized by a variety of different economic activities, for example in the fields of fisheries, offshore wind power or tourism. Every use influences the interests and opportunities of other sectors. The ecosystem and its biodiversity are also changed by anthropogenic influences.

Marine Natural Hazards and Effects on Coastal Areas

The coastal regions are among the most important habitats for mankind. They are densely populated, accommodate infrastructures such as ports and industrial plants and are of great tourist importance. Rising sea levels as a result of climate change, erosion and flooding threaten coastal regions worldwide - the largest cities in the world are located in endangered coastal areas.

Stakeholder Dialogue

The Center for Ocean and Society promotes the dialogue between science and society and therefore strengthens the exchange between scientists, civil society, politics and business. This transdisciplinary approach intends to support solution-oriented science to find ways for sustainable management of coasts and oceans.