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Capacity Development is an essential tenet of UNESCO/IOC’s mission. It enables all Member States to participate in, and benefit from, ocean research and services that are vital to sustainable development and human welfare on the planet. The two purposes of the IOC, as stated in its statues, are as follows:

  • The purpose of the Commission is to promote international cooperation and to coordinate programmes in research, services and capacity-building, in order to learn more about the nature and resources of the ocean and coastal areas and to apply that knowledge for the improvement of management, sustainable development, the protection of the marine environment, and the decision-making processes of its Member States.
  • The Commission will collaborate with international organizations concerned with the work of the Commission, and especially with those organizations of the United Nations system which are willing and prepared to contribute to the purpose and functions of the Commission and/or to seek advice and cooperation in the field of ocean and coastal area scientific research, related services and capacity-building.

Equally, IOCAFRICA has listed institutional capacity development as a cross-cutting function within five other themes including: ocean research, observing systems/ data management, early warning& services, assessment and information for policy and sustainable management & governance. IOCAFRICA works on several projects to meet these purposes.