Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance (AORA)



The AORA (Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance) main objective is to implement the Galway Statement (2013) signed between the European Union, United States and Canada to promote the transatlantic collaboration on marine scientific research. AORA is a scientific, technical and logistical support action supported by the European Union through the H2020 funding Programme.

The main research areas where the collaboration between the European Union, United States and Canada is a priority are:

• Marine ecosystem-approach

• Observing systems

• Marine biotechnology

• Aquaculture

• Ocean literacy - engaging with society

• Seabed and benthic habitat mapping

• Marine Litter


In this project, Ciência Viva is responsible for the coordination of the area of Ocean Literacy, defined as an understanding of the ocean’s influence on us and our influence on the ocean. This concept is based on the North American program of Ocean Literacy, its implementation and development in Europe has been discussed by informal networks of educators, scientists and science communicators from both sides of the Atlantic (Ostend 2012, Plymouth 2013, Gothenburg 2014). The European Union has been promoting the implementation of Ocean Literacy in Europe by funding projects, in which Ciência Viva is a partner, through the programme Horizon 2020.



Until the 21st of May the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer will participate in an expedition to map the seafloor between Ireland and Canada.

Follow the researchers Blog here




Implementation Plan (being updated)



Co-ordination: Marine Institute (MI) (IR)


ICES - International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (DK)

Ifremer - Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer (FR)

PLOCAN - Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (ES)

IMR - Institute of Marine Research (NO)

RANNIS - The Icelandic Centre for Research (IS)

CV - Agência Nacional para a Cultura Científica e Tecnológica (PT)

WOC - World Ocean Council (UK)

IOC -UNESCO - Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (EU)


Project webpage



A Roadmap for Transatlantic Ocean Literacy

Mar e Sociedade - Curiosidades para que gosta de mar

Ocean Literacy



Lisbon Transatlantic Ocean Literacy (TOL) Workshop (2015)


Other Initiatives

TOL Copenhagen 2015 

EMSEA 2015 Conference


Relevant Links:

ResponSEAble Project 

Sea Change Project

Sea for Society: Towards a Blue Society Project

European Marine Science Educators Association's (EMSEA)  



Ocean literacy (from College of Exploration)


First collaborative Atlantic seabed mapping survey by AORA


AORAC SA - Peter Heffernan