Greeting

Satoshi Tanaka
Director of RCME
Graduate School of Education
Satoshi Tanaka

“Marine education” is the basic principle of “coexisting with the ocean” on a primary and secondary education level.

In order for children, and us, to “coexist with the ocean”, one has “to be familiar with, to know the ocean” and from that make use of the knowledge and ability to think, judge and express “to protect and utilize the ocean” specifically.

The basic principle of “coexisting with the ocean” is the basic premise of the underlying specific aim and significance of marine education which is: 1. the prevention of ocean disasters, 2. the conservation of the ocean as land, 3. the utilization of marine resources, 4. the development of marine industry (water industry), 5. the maintenance of marine environment and the conservation of marine life, and 6. the development of marine-based culture and art; these six aims appear to signify the field of marine education curriculum.

However, considering the various situations in the current world, we think that we should indicate a more focused direction; therefore we have three keywords to offer: environment, life and safety. The ocean is our support as well as an environment that we enjoy; it connects various forms of life as well as serves as a sphere filled with life, an influencing element for survival. When utilizing the ocean, we think that it should be treated like public goods (Res Publica). Such a marine education just might deliver all our wishes.

Toshiyuki Hibiya
Director of UTokyo Ocean Alliance
Graduate School of Science
Toshiyuki Hibiya

More than 250 faculty members and researchers at the University of Tokyo work on a broad range of topics related directly to the ocean. This represents the largest group of researchers in this field anywhere in Japan.

Nonetheless, in order to tackle and resolve contemporary ocean-related issues, much work remains to be done in terms of establishing a platform for thinking about the oceans in an interdisciplinary and comprehensive way.

On July 3, 2007 the University of Tokyo established the “Ocean Alliance”—a university-wide organization to address this challenge. The alliance draws on seven graduate schools, five research institutes, and one research center. This initiative established a multidisciplinary nucleus for ocean education and research that ties together all these departments across the university.

With a view to resolving the ocean-related issues faced by society, the Ocean Alliance strives to contemplate the future of Japan as an ocean nation from a global perspective, deepen our knowledge and understanding of the oceans, create and develop new ideas, technologies and industries, and cultivate new academic disciplines that integrate these connected fields. The alliance also contributes as a think tank to national efforts on ocean issues.

Hajime Kayanne
Program Director of UTokyo Ocean Alliance
Graduate School of Science
Hajime Kayanne

The mission of the Marine Education Literacy Program is to promote marine education within primary and secondary education.

The core of such activity is the Marine Education Promotion Research Center established as the program’s base. The program allows students to abandon textbooks for a time to give them a chance to know the appeal of the ocean, not to cultivate a handful of marine researchers. Careful selection of educational content for 10,000,000 elementary and junior high school students and 3,000,000 high school students and curriculum for 1,000,000 teachers must be prepared.

A part of the mission of the program was achieved in 2017 when there was praise of the enrichment of marine education when revising curriculum guidelines in elementary and junior high school. However, the revision concerned mainly the account of territories and territorial waters in social studies and only one of the three pillars of marine education, safety. In order to implement the true meaning of marine education, we oceanography experts and education experts will continue to work with teachers.