On World Oceans Day (June 8), the Marine Institute has announced a line-up of global innovators who will address this year’s ‘Our Ocean Wealth Summit’ on June 30 at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

Celtic Explorer

RV Celtic Explorer in heavy seas between St John’s Newfoundland and Galway. Photo Tomasz Szumski, Marine Institute 

Focussing on the theme ‘Rethinking Boundaries and Innovation for a Sustainable Marine Economy’, speakers from the USA, Canada and Europe will outline their views on sustainable strategies for Ireland’s blue economy.  

Tom Kelley, IDEO – author, innovator and father of ‘design thinking – will  deliver a keynote address on the challenges facing marine development. Designer of Apple’s first mouse, IDEO new designs corporate cultures to drive innovation.  

Representatives from the Maritime Alliance, GEOMAR, PwC and Statoil will outline the opportunties of a blue economy which will be further debated by panelists including economist David McWilliams; Tara McCarthy, CEO Bord Bia and Fiona Monaghan, Bord Failte.

Describing the ocean as a ‘national asset’ that supports a diverse economy, Dr Peter Heffernan, Marine Institute chief executive, said that businesses across many sectors have responded to the opportunites presented by the marine environment: 

“To enable our marine potential to be realised, it is essential that we seek new approaches and ways of thinking to harness the boundless opportunties that exist in our marine industry.”

Greg Murphy (Maritime Alliance) will deliver insights for the marine sector against a backdrop of the successful US ‘blue tech’ cluster, while Terry Garcia (Exploration Ventures LLC and ex National Geographic) will lead discussions on innovating in an ever-changing ocean environment. 

Dan O’Brien (Institute of International and European Affairs ) will outline issues facing Ireland’s seafood sector, and give his views on sustainable economic development in coastal regions. 

Progress on Ireland’s integrated marine plan – Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth’ – will also be outlined to delegates at this major national and international conference, moderated by broadcaster and journalist, Olivia O’Leary.