Our story

The Marine CoLABoration was created following a Forum for the Future report, commissioned by The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s UK branch, on developing a systems programme for leveraging change on marine issues.


The report found that lacking information and insufficient flow of existing information on the marine environment were key barriers to creating change and tackling marine issues.

The Marine CoLAB was established, with it’s first meeting on the 15th January 2015 to foster engagement and a shared, co-created vision by providing the space and resources for a small group of organisations to meet regularly.

Gulbenkian Oceans Initiative

Over a six-year period the Marine CoLAB has explored existing practice, identified and experimented with new approaches and ideas – looked to bridge the gaps between innovative local practice and influence at national and EU levels and explored how to convey the intrinsic as well as socio-economic value of the ocean.

You can explore the CoLAB’s projects, known as experiments, under the Experiments tab. You can also read more about the evolution of the CoLAB and its different phases in our guide, The Marine CoLABoration: An Introduction to Our Approach.

The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation aspires to bring about long-term improvements in wellbeing, particularly for the most vulnerable, by creating connections across boundaries which deliver social, cultural and environmental value. The Foundation’s Valuing the Ocean strand is part of the wider Gulbenkian Ocean’s initiative and is working towards the conservation and good management of the ocean for the wellbeing of people now and in the future.