On April 1, 2015, the Ship & Ocean Foundation--commonly known as the Ocean Policy Research Foundation (OPRF)--merged with The Sasakawa Peace Foundation, and, as the Ocean Policy Research Institute, SPF embarked on initiatives aimed at integrated management and sustainable development of the oceans.
Prior to the merger through which this new institute was formed, the OPRF (among its other activities) had engaged in research and development of technologies related to the oceans and in human resource development. In 2000, the foundation initiated research on ocean policy, and, as a think-tank working for co-existence of humanity with the oceans, commenced advocacy of policy and dissemination of relevant information. These activities helped bring about the enactment of the Basic Act on Ocean Policy in 2007, which strives to make Japan into a new maritime nation.
The foundation went on to participate actively in international conferences and discussions on ocean governance. It also served as a think-tank to help construct and implement the twelve Basic Measures prescribed by the Basic Act on Ocean Policy.
Covering 70% of the surface of the earth, the oceans are a treasure shared between all of humanity, and one on which humanity depends for its survival. On its own, Japan cannot tackle the problems that relate to the oceans. These global problems include: ocean warming and acidification resulting from climate change, the depletion of fishery resources and their sustainable use, conservation and management of biodiversity, development of offshore resources; governance of the Arctic, small island nations, and conservation and management of their surrounding waters, integrated coastal management, freedom and security of navigation, marine education, and human resources development. These issues must be tackled from a global perspective through initiatives that are based on international discussion.
Our Ocean Policy Research Institute (OPRI) aspires to become a "think-and-do-tank" to tackle these challenges and thereby achieve the mission of the reorganized Sasakawa Peace Function to establish a new system of ocean governance. To do so, the Institute will build upon the activities, human resources, knowledge, and network of the former OPRF, and expand research, advocacy, dissemination of relevant information, facilitation of necessary measures, and networking activities. We sincerely wish to collaborate ever more closely with likeminded stakeholders who are also concerned about our oceans.