Rethinking marine resource governance for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Elsevier, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Volume 34, October 2018, Pages 54-61.
Selina Marguerite Stead

Governments are facing mounting pressure to ‘do something on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14’. The SDG 14 comprises targets and indicators for countries to show progress in achieving conservation and sustainable use of oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development. One novel approach experiencing traction in improving growth performance of marine resource sectors — particularly marine biotechnology and fisheries — is open innovation. This review assesses the potential impacts of using open innovation approaches more widely with good governance principles to promote sustainable management of marine resource use.

Recent research filled the gap in creating a quantitative marine open innovation measure to monitor and manage marine sector innovation process. Prior 2018, formulation of marine policies — aimed at building economic prosperity from sustainable use of marine environments — were constrained by the absence of a tool to provide an index to compare marine sectors’ innovation performance. This review highlights a need to broaden the measures used to determine marine management effectiveness especially in the context of achieving the SDGs. Governments are urged to pay more attention to new governance tools including open innovation when formulating new policy aimed at building future scenarios of economic resilience involving marine resource use.