Blue Heritage: The Role of Ocean Art and Culture in Ocean Science and Management


7 June


1:00 pm



More attention needs to be given to the human-cultural dimension of the ocean and its use. Recognising the role of ocean cultures and heritage in contributing to sustainable ocean governance, this event will discuss key messages in a forthcoming book entitled the Palgrave Handbook of Blue Heritage. The book highlights that while nature is inherently valuable, humans hold diverse, intrinsic and cultural connections with the ocean and coasts. The book represents a novel interdisciplinary collaboration between One Ocean Hub and global researchers, involving more than 25 authors worldwide, including scholars from Australia, US, Seychelles and India. It is edited by Professor Rosabelle Boswell, Nelson Mandela University (South Africa), Dr David O’Kane (Max Planck Institute, Germany) and Professor Jeremy Hills, University of South Pacific (Fiji).

As part of the event, panellists will discuss the role of arts and innovative methodology, such as Empatheatre, to creative praxis in ocean management and the role of singing in fisher-folk personhood and power in Ghana. Mpume Mthombeni, an award-winning performer, storyteller and theatre-maker from Umlazi, Durban and the co-founder of Empatheatre contributes to the second part of the event. She will read from Between Worlds, Professor Boswell’s third poetry anthology which articulates the nuances of human relations with the sea and the imagined responses of both animate and inanimate marine worlds.

Chair: Mr Eden Charles, former Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary and Deputy Permanent Representative of Trinidad and Tobago to the United Nations, Lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the International Seabed Authority for the Enterprise and the Chairman of the Advisory Board of One Ocean Hub UKRI.


  1. Professor Rose Boswell, Anthropology, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa
  2. Dr Kira Erwin, Urban Sociology, Durban University of Technology, South Africa
  3. Dr Eric Otchere, Arts, University Cape Coast, Ghana
  4. Dr John Ansah, Sociology, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
  5. Dr Georgina Yaa Oduro, Sociology, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
  6. Dr Bolanle Erinosho, Law, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
  7. Dr David Wilson, History, University of Strathclyde, UK
  8. Anthea Christoffels-Du Plessis, Law, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa


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