Ocean Science

The world's oceans are vitally important to all life on Earth. However, human activities are altering marine ecosystems in highly detrimental ways. To better protect our oceans, we need a greater understanding of how serious threats – overfishing, widespread pollution and global climate change – are altering these environments.

To improve our knowledge of ocean ecosystems and the life they support, the Ocean Science Division pursues a diverse portfolio of projects related to marine conservation. We develop and support scientific research, technical analyses and syntheses of scientific information that help to explain critical emerging issues, inform policy and advance solutions to conservation problems.

As part of our work, Pew funds the Sea Around Us Project at the University of British Columbia.  The project has assembled global databases of fisheries information, including catches, prices, distribution of commercial marine species and marine protected areas. The project analyzes and maps data, documents the impact of fisheries, and devises recommendations to reverse harmful trends.

Our Work

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  • NOAA Leader on Oceans, Atmosphere—and Making History in Space

    Pioneering astronaut Kathryn Sullivan—now the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)—made history in October 1984, when she became the first American woman to walk in space. Thirty years later, Dr. Sullivan sat down at The Pew Charitable Trusts with Lynn Sherr—author of the recent New York Times best-seller Sally Ride: America's First Woman in Space—to reflect... Read More

  • Down to Earth

    Thirty years ago, as Kathryn Sullivan floated through space, she looked past her astronaut boots to see Venezuela drifting below her. Sullivan, the first American woman to walk in space as part of the nation’s pioneer class of female astronauts, recalled a pretty “cool view.” Read More

  • The Blue Planet: Lessons for Earth Science from Space

    On Wednesday, October 8, Pew hosted a conversation with Kathryn Sullivan, the first American woman to walk in space as a crew member of the shuttle Challenger. Sullivan, now the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), was speaking in advance of the 30th anniversary of her spacewalk. Read More

Walking Shark Discovery

Walking Shark

Media Contact

Rachel Brittin

Officer, Communications

202.540.6312