Sustainable Oceans and Coasts: Consultation for a ten-year strategy

Laubenstein T1, O’Donnell T1

1Future Earth Australia


As a coastal nation, Australia is dependent on the health, resilience, and sustainability of its oceans and coasts. Yet a range of issues threaten these connected ecosystems and the human settlements that depend on them. Promoting health and resilience in the face of these issues will be challenging, particularly because of the multiple overlapping sectors that draw on ocean and coastal systems. A coordinated, systems-based approach is required that brings researchers, governments, industries, and communities together to develop a shared vision and to design and implement enduring solutions locally and at scale. To support this vision, we developed a national, ten-year strategy for sustainable ocean and coastal systems. Drawing off a series of national consultation workshops with stakeholders from government, industry, academia, and civil society, we created clear, actionable strategies for achieving healthy and resilience oceans and coasts for all of Australia. Together with a diverse Expert Reference Group, we developed the strategy, released in the first half of 2021. Here, we present the results of our consultation process, including common issues and ideas that emerged across the nation, as well as site-specific challenges and suggestions. We also discuss our strategies for engaging and influencing across multiple sectors through an inter/transdisciplinary lens.


Dr Laubenstein is a Research and Policy Officer at Future Earth Australia, a national branch of the international Future Earth research network. She is a qualified scientist and science communicator, having recently completed her PhD in marine biology at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies in Townsville, and works at FEA to promote transdisciplinary and cross-sectoral knowledge sharing in the ocean and coastal sphere.