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Welcome from the Oceans Department Chair

Fiorenza Micheli

The VISION of the Oceans Department is to create transformative ocean research, education, and impact through interdisciplinary collaboration, technology development, use-inspired research, immersive education and training, innovative solutions, and the exploration of the ocean at all scales and domains of knowledge. The Oceans are Earth’s last frontier and are vital for our health and future. Comprising 71% of Earth’s surface and 95% of its habitable volume, the Oceans regulate Earth’s climate, provide food and livelihood for billions of people, and are home to an extraordinary diversity of plants, animals, and microbes with many species yet to be discovered. Our future is inextricably linked to the oceans, yet knowledge of the oceans and ocean life remains shockingly limited. We have explored only a fraction of ocean habitats and have yet to decipher the complex processes that support climate mitigation and adaptation, oceanic food webs and productivity, and human interactions, uses, and dependencies. Simultaneously, ocean change is accelerating, with evidence that 2022 saw the warmest ocean recorded to date, and escalating sea level rise, acidification, biodiversity loss, pollution and fisheries collapse. Our ultimate goal is to help the world understand, sustain and more equitably share ocean resources. This is critical to the future of life on Earth. A future where humans and nature thrive in concert and in perpetuity is not achievable without a healthy, productive, and resilient ocean.

Fiorenza Micheli

Chair, Oceans Department 

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