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Ocean Citizenship: An Emergent Geographical Concept

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Ocean citizenship describes a relationship between our everyday lives and the health of the coastal and marine environment. Through our everyday lives we affect, and are affected by, the marine and coastal environment in numerous ways. As such, individuals have a responsibility to make informed lifestyle choices to minimize this impact. In doing so, the actions of individuals can contribute to the amelioration of large-scale and seemingly insurmountable geographical problems. This article outlines the concept of ocean citizenship within the context of the public understanding of marine environmental issues. The article draws heavily on the experience of the National Maritime Museum as an important contributor to the development of ocean citizenship in the United Kingdom. Specifically, the Planet Ocean initiative will be examined, in which the Museum has adopted a multimodal approach to public engagement through exhibitions, educational resources, and specific research publications. The article concludes by highlighting the importance of geography in the development and sustainability of ocean citizenship.

Keywords: Integrated Coastal Management; National Maritime Museum; citizenship; geography; ocean citizenship

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: School of Conservation Sciences, Bournemouth University, Dorset, United Kingdom 2: School of Environmental Design and Management, University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth, United Kingdom

Publication date: 2007-07-01

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