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Call To Action — Ocean Innovation Challenge 2020, United Nations Development Programme, Portugal

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)


March 05, 2020


Opportunity Cover Image - Call To Action — Ocean Innovation Challenge 2020, United Nations Development Programme, Portugal

Ocean Innovation Challenge

UNDP launches a new call to action— Ocean Innovation Challenge (OIC) to accelerate progress on SDG 14 targets. The OIC seeks innovations that are transferable, replicable and scalable. The Challenge grants range from $50,000 to $250,000.

Recognizing the increasing urgency of tackling ocean pollution, particularly from plastics and nutrients, the first of several planned OICs focuses on SDG 14.1- Reduce Marine Pollution.

 “At a time when the world’s oceans and seas face unprecedented pressures, UNDP’s new Ocean Innovation Challenge will shine a light on innovative, entrepreneurial and creative approaches that can advance ocean and coastal restoration and protection,” says Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator.

“Supporting the blue economy in this way can help us achieve SDG 14— while spurring economic development and helping to reduce poverty and inequality.”

From fisheries to aquaculture to industrial agriculture, the 'business as usual' scenario will not deliver the kinds of transformational change needed to move towards truly sustainable ocean use.

“With four of SDG14’s ten targets maturing in 2020, we have a critical year ahead for the well-being of the Ocean. Thus the UN Ocean Conference, to be held 2-6 June 2020 in Lisbon, will have special importance in supporting the implementation of SDG14,” says Peter Thomson, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy on Oceans.

“To achieve SDG14, we must break new ground with innovative technologies, policies, regulations and financial instruments. In this regard, the new UNDP Ocean Innovation Challenge is a most welcome addition to the growing number of ocean incubators and accelerators.”

For interested parties to take part in the Ocean Innovation Challenge:

·        The innovations to be submitted can include technological as well as cutting edge policy, regulatory, financial, economic or other actions that address either sea-based or land-based sectors.

·        Initial concepts can be submitted by public or private entities, including governments, private companies (including start-ups), NGO/CSO, United Nations entities, academic institutions, and intergovernmental organizations.

·        The Challenge must be implemented in and benefit stakeholders in developing countries, but may be submitted by developing or developed country proponents.

For more information and to submit a preliminary concept, see the Ocean Innovation Challenge website.

How to Apply

The first 'Ocean Challenge', focused on solutions to Ocean Pollution, opens here on 8 January 2020. The application process is in 3 stages:

  1. Starting 8 January 2020, interested applicants should submit their preliminary proposal here no later than 5 March 2020. Early applications are encouraged.
  2. In April 2020, successful applicants to the first round will be invited to submit a more detailed project proposal before 25 April 2020.
  3. OIC Award-winners will be announced at the 2nd UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, 2-6 June 2020.

Who can apply?

Proposals can be submitted by

  • Governments
  • Private entities (including start-ups)
  • NGOs
  • CSOs
  • Academic institutions
  • United Nations and other intergovernmental organizations

For more information click "LINK TO ORIGINAL" below.

Eligible Countries
Host Country
Publish Date
January 12, 2020


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