A wave of excitement and learning

“Exciting news! We are thrilled to announce the upcoming #MarineRegionsForum conference! Join us from November 7th to 9th, 2023, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, as we focus on the Western Indian Ocean Region. Our aim is to enhance regional ocean governance.”

With these words, I embarked on an extraordinary journey with the Marine Regions Forum. My name is Hamza Buqaileh, a Water and Environmental Engineer, currently pursuing a MSc in Integrated Natural Resource Management at Humboldt-Universität of Berlin. I was given the incredible opportunity to contribute to the cause of saving the oceans through my role as a student assistant at the 2nd Marine Regions Forum.

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Shared opportunities for the future – an early career perspective on the Marine Regions Forum 2023

The Marine Regions Forum 2023 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Our ocean transcends borders. The waves carry with them the shared burdens.” This is a quote from Denis Matatiken from the first plenary to kick off the Marine Regions Forum 2023 that took place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in November. Little did I anticipate the profound impact these words would have as they set the tone for an enriching exploration of ocean governance through workshops, dialogues, and subsequent plenaries.

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Marine Regions Forum 2023 photo competition

We couldn’t visit all the countries in the region, or the other regions that are present in the conference so encouraged people to send in photos for a photo competition. We were excited to receive a large number of entries and the participants at the Marine Regions Forum conference were able to vote for their favourites via the conference app.

Congratulations to the first place winner, Frank Mirobo:

“Embracing the Community Ownership of the Ocean”

The current generation embracing the future generation’s enjoyment and ownership of the Ocean. Photo: Frank Mirobo


Congratulations to the second place winner, Tanguy Nicolas:

“Somanga, Kilwa district, Tanzania”

A young boy is paddling his makeshift mtumbwi (canoe) at high tide in the mangrove, attending a popular fish landing site on the seafront from his village, in Somanga, Tanzania. Photo: Tanguy Nicolas


Photo Gallery: Marine Regions Forum 2023

Photos of the conference from Empower Limited are available here, but we have picked out a few highlights below too.

7 November 2023: Welcoming address and keynote speakers

8 November 2023

Some of the Early Career Professionals at the Marine Regions Forum 2023 conference (photo by Empower Limited)


9 November 2023


Marine Regions Forum at LME22

Klaudija Cremers (IDDRI) and Shannon Hampton (RIFS) meeting with Abdoulaye Diagana (Abidjan Convention Secretariat – and MRF Advisory Board member) at LME22

It was an honour to be invited to the 22 Large Marine Ecosystems Consultation Meeting that took place from the 11 – 13 July 2023 in Paris. This event, a project of the GEF IW:LEARN project under the leadership of IOC-UNESCO, brought together marine and coastal practitioners to engage and discuss to ecosystem-based ocean governance and management.

Shannon Hampton had the opportunity to present the Marine Regions Forum and upcoming conference in Tanzania. There was an opportunity to explore ways to collaboration with the LME community and discuss the potential added value of the Marine Regions Forum as a platform for discussion and knowledge exchange outside of the formal negotiations to advance regional ocean governance.

Shannon Hampton from RIFS representing the Marine Regions Forum team on a panel at LME22


Marine Regions Forum at UN Oceans Conference 2022

The Marine Regions Forum team together with partners organised two events during the 2022 UN Ocean Conference (UNOC) from 27 June – 1 July 2022 in Lisbon, Portugal. The UNOC, co-hosted by Portugal and Kenya, had as theme “Scaling up ocean action based on science and innovation for the implementation of Goal 14: stocktaking, partnerships and solutions” and aimed to mobilise action to implement sustainable development goal (SDG) 14.
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