The round table on the proposed ‘Pacific and Southern Oceans Institute’ (a working title) saw a compelling discussion, and it generated a wide range of ideas and observations regarding our ocean space. This event forms part of Project One Ocean.

On Tuesday evening, 16 June the Institute played host to 13 guests – a diverse group with a common interest in the effective management of New Zealand’s oceans. Together public servants, academics, industry experts, scientists, environmentalists, consultants and legal minds began the development of the proposed oceans institute.

We structured the discussion with three lines of inquiry: why a Pacific and Southern Oceans Institute is necessary; what success would look like; and how the institute would come into being and operate. It was then left to the table, who in 90 minutes established clearly why such an institute is necessary and provided ideas about what is needed and how that might be realised. Though opinions differed, the group were very eager to find a way forward.

The next step for the McGuinness Institute will be to synthesise the initial ideas of the round table. We will be emailing an initial draft discussion paper in early July to all attendees to review and provide feedback.

In August 2015 we hope to release the resulting draft to the oceans community, including all iwi and industry representatives, inviting further feedback and in particular seeking novel ways to strengthen the proposal. The draft will also be available to view and comment on through the McGuinness Institute website. If you prefer, you are also welcome to register your interest to be on the mailing list with Guy at

In late October 2015 we hope to publish the final discussion paper in such a way that it provides government and other stakeholders an opportunity too good to refuse – an initiative that New Zealand can be proud to call our own.

If you are keen to learn more about Project One Ocean or simply have questions, please contact Guy at 


 Picture of round table